FINAL: Saint John 7, Val-d’Or 5
By Tim Lumsden
Saint John continued their visit to Quebec on Thursday evening as they travelled to Val-d’Or to take on the Foreurs.
Alex Fournier dusted off the pads and stepped into net for Saint John while Francois Tremblay guarded the Foreurs’ net.
Huberdeau took a stick to the face at 0:31 and Guillaume Gelinas was sent off for high sticking, sending Saint John to the power play.
Saint John then received a “to many men on the ice” call. Izacky went off at 5:30 to serve it.
Seconds later, Val-d’Or went on the attack. Fournier just couldn’t react fast enough and Samuel Henley walks away with the first goal of the game at 5:56. Val-d’Or took an early 1-0 lead.
Val-d’Or followed Saint John’s lead and received a call for “too many men on the ice” at 10:38. Anthony Mantha went to the box to serve that one as Saint John returned to the power play.
The game was tied as Stephen MacAulay shot one past Tremblay at 10:28. Durepos and Huberdeau each took an assist. Jonathan Huberdeau received his 252nd point with that assist which gave him the Sea Dogs leading scorer record.
Shortly after the Saint John goal, Anthony Mantha gave Val-d’Or the lead once more at 12:59 with the Foreurs’ second goal of the game. This brought the score 2-1.
Spencer Smallman got tied up with Nicolas Aube-Kubel at 17:17 which sent Saint John to their third power play of the night.
Shots in the first were 10-7 Foreurs.
Anthony Mantha started the period off with a bang. His shot into the Sea Dogs net at 1:06 resulted in a broken stick as well as the Foreurs’ third goal. That made it 3-1 for the Foreurs.
Brett Hester increased the lead even further as he scored the fourth goal for Val-d’Or at 2:21.
Steven Duda and Skyler Spiller decided to dance soon after Hester’s goal. Each were sent off for fighting, with Spiller also taking the instigator.
Julien Leduc pulled a cross-checking penalty at 4:59. It resulted in Stephen MacAulay scoring his second goal of the game and closing the gap 4-2. Huberdeau and Durepos received the assists.
Anton Zlobin headed off to the box for interference at 5:57.
Saint John capitalized once again on the power play as Pierre Durepos scored his first of the game at 7:03 with assists once again to Jonathan Huberdeau and Ryan Tesink.
Andreas Tsogkas took a hard hit from behind and Gelinas was sent off for the check from behind at 9:02. The Dogs went on the attack once more, looking to continue their power play success.
Val-d’Or scored their fifth goal of the game as Fournier dove to cover the puck but play was allowed to continue. Vincent Dunn was awarded the questionable goal. This gave the Foreurs the 5-3 lead.
Julien Leduc headed off to spend some time in the box as he took a slashing penalty at 13:16. Fans wondered if Saint John could close the gap some more thanks to a strong power play evening.
Artem Sergeev took aim on Gagne but missed and instead sent Gagne flying as he was tripped. Sergeev took the penalty at 14:19. It was penalty city as Stephen MacAulay was called for roughing at 14:37. Kevin Gagne must have told MacAulay not to worry however since he closed the gap 5-4 at 14:56.
16:53 sent the Foreurs on the power play as Oliver Cooper spent some time in the box for cross-checking.
Kevin Gagne pulled an interference penalty as the buzzer went off. This would send Val-d’Or to the power play at the start of the third period.
Shots were 13-11 Saint John in the middle stanza.
Gagne was on a roll as he tied the game 5-5 at 5:45 with Matthew Highmore and Steven Duda taking the assists.
The tied game was short lived however as Mason Gray scored the sixth goal of the game for the Foreurs at 9:14.
The Foreurs didn’t stop there. Cedrick Henley broke his stick firing one past Fournier to increase the Val-d’Or lead 7-5 at 14:02.
17:29 saw Ryan Tesink and Jeremie Fraser sent to the dressing rooms for roughing and a misconduct for unsportsmanlike conduct. Stephen MacAulay headed to the box for high-sticking.
Unfortunately the Sea Dogs would not be able to claw back from the two goal deficit. Val-d’Or won the game 7-5.
Total shots on goal for the game were 30-25 in favour of Val-d’Or.
NOTES: See Sea Dogs Postscript tomorrow on SN.
NEXT GAME: Saint John’s next game is a home game on Sunday afternoon as they take on the Rimouski Oceanic at Harbour Station. Puck drops at 3:00 pm.