Friday, November 27, 2015

RECAP: Sea Dogs Win 6-2

FINAL: Sherbrooke 2, Saint John 6
By Kevin Chambers | SN Staff

SAINT JOHN – On Friday night at Harbour Station, the Sea Dogs were looking to bounce back from a tough 4-3 overtime loss to the Quebec Remparts. It didn’t get any easier for Saint John as they faced off against a dangerous Sherbrooke Phoenix squad – but in the end, the pulled off a big 6-2 victory.

The Sea Dogs controlled much of the early going in this contest yet it was the Phoenix striking first when Nicolas Poulin banged home a loose puck past Marc-Antoine Turcotte at 6:24. The Sea Dogs dominated the period and were finally rewarded when Sam Povorozniouk scored his team leading 13th goal of the season at 14:31. Later in the opening period, some nice work by Adam Marsh and Joe Veleno ultimately resulted in a goal by Adam Bateman to give the Sea Dogs a 2-1 lead. The lead would be short lived, however, after Povorozniouk took a high sticking penalty at 17:47 and put the Sea Dogs in a four-on-three shorthanded situation. Guillaume Gauthier would knot the game at 2-2 at 17:58.

Dawson Theede came close to getting the second period off to a great start with his first QMJHL goal but clanked it off the post. Nico Blachman would not be denied though, scoring his first goal by tapping a loose puck past a down Alexandre Lagace at 8:23. Moments later, another first QMJHL goal, this time from Oliver Felixson, gave the Sea Dogs a 4-2 lead.

The Sea Dogs would extend their lead at the 4:36 mark of the third when Mathieu Joseph got one by Lagace, giving the Sea Dogs a three goal cushion. Saint John would strike again just 38 seconds later when Nathan Noel added to the onslaught, giving the Sea Dogs a 6-2 lead – and that would be how things would end.

GAME DAY 28: vs Phoenix

A preview of tonight’s game between the Sherbrooke Phoenix and Saint John Sea Dogs…

When and where: Tonight at 7:30 p.m., Harbour Station

TV/Radio/Webcast: None/96.1 NewSong FM/QMJHL Live

Records: The Phoenix are fifth in the West Division and 12th overall in the QMJHL with an 11-11-3-2 record for 27 points. The Sea Dogs are second in the Maritimes Division and seventh overall with a 15-10-2-0 record for 32 points.

Last games: The Phoenix are coming off a 3-2 loss in Charlottetown last night. Julien Pelletier scored both Sherbrooke goals while Evan Fitzpatrick made 28 saves in the loss. The Sea Dogs are coming off a 4-3 overtime loss on home ice to the Quebec Remparts last night. Joe Veleno, Mathieu Joseph and Adam Marsh all scored for Saint John while Marc-Antoine Turcotte made 27 stops in the loss.

2015-16 head-to-head: The Sea Dogs are 1-0-0-0 against the Phoenix this season while Sherbrooke is 0-0-1-0 against Saint John.

Last meeting: Nov. 4 in Sherbrooke where the Sea Dogs defeated the Phoenix 3-2 in overtime. Jakub Zboril scored the overtime winner while Daniel Del Paggio and Sam Povorozniouk scored in regulation time for Saint John. Sherbrooke goals came from Julien Pelletier and Kevin Gilbert. Marc-Antoine Turcotte made 35 saves in the win while Evan Fitzpatrick made 23 in the loss.

Ex-Sea Dogs on the Phoenix: None

Random fact/stat: Sherbrooke is only 6-6-1-1 when scoring first this season, giving them the third worst winning percentage in the league when netting the opening goal.

RECAP: Sea Dogs Lose 4-3 (OT)

FINAL: Quebec 4, Saint John 3 (OT)

By Kevin Chambers | SN Staff

SAINT JOHN - The Saint John Sea Dogs rolled out the welcome mat for the Quebec Remparts on a Thursday night. In their previous meeting, the Sea Dogs scored four goals in the third period en route to a 7-3 win over the Remparts. This time around, Saint John couldn’t score four goals in 60-plus minutes of action in a 4-3 loss.

The Remparts got the start they were looking for early on, controlling much of the play. Quebec would open the scoring on a goal by Yanick Turcotte who beat the other Turcotte – Sea Dogs goaltender Marc-Antoine – and gave the Remparts a 1-0 lead at the 5:50 mark. The Sea Dogs’ struggling power play would get a chance later in the frame and they would capitalize when Jakub Zboril’s wrist shot from the point was tipped in front by Joe Veleno and past Brady Labrecque. The Remparts would later take advantage of a long five on three power play on a goal by Nikolas Brouillard, giving the Remparts a 2-1 lead after 20 minutes.

The second period saw a lot of back and forth action but nothing on the scoreboard. Both goaltenders played very well, making some tough saves when called upon.

The Sea Dogs had a great chance early in the third period when Daniel Del Paggio appeared to have a wide open cage to shoot at when the official blew the play down after losing sight of the puck. During a four on four stretch, Turcotte made an unbelievable glove save to keep the Sea Dogs within a goal at that point. Later in the frame, Chabot jumped up into the rush and got spun out by two Remparts, causing a two on one the other way and Timashov would make no mistake and beat Turcotte high blocker side to make it 3-1 Quebec at 11:19. The Sea Dogs would get back within one when Mathieu Joseph ripped one past Labrecque with 6:42 left in the final frame. Saint John would complete the comeback with just 42 seconds left and the net empty as Adam Marsh managed to get one past Labrecque, sending the game to overtime.

The overtime saw lots of wide open hockey but in the end it was Massimo Carroza that would end things at 2:26 and secure the win for the Remparts.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

GAME DAY 27: vs Remparts

A preview of tonight’s game between the Quebec Remparts and Saint John Sea Dogs…

When and where: Tonight at 7 p.m., Harbour Station

TV/Radio/Webcast: None/96.1 NewSong FM/QMJHL Live

Records: The Remparts are second in the East Division and sixth overall in the QMJHL standings with a 15-11-2-0 record for 32 points. The Sea Dogs are second in the Maritimes Division and eighth overall with a 15-10-1-0 record for 31 points.

Last games: Quebec is coming off a 5-4 win in Charlottetown last night. Massimo Carozza scored twice for the Remparts while Bronson Beaton, Dmytro Timashov and Matthew Boucher added singles. Julian Galloway made 20 saves in the win. Saint John is coming off a 4-3 shootout victory in Chicoutimi on Saturday. Thomas Chabot, Kyle Ward and Adam Marsh all scored for the Dogs in regulation time while Alex Bishop made 23 saves in the win.

2015-16 head-to-head: The Sea Dogs are 1-0-0-0 against the Remparts this season while Quebec is 0-1-0-0 against Saint John.

Last meeting: Nov. 7 in front of 17,249 at the Videotron Centre, the Sea Dogs defeated the Remparts 7-3. Spencer Smallman, Adam Bateman, Kyle Ward, Daniel Del Paggio, Mathieu Joseph, Matthew Highmore and Thomas Chabot all scored for Saint John while Quebec goals came from Matthew Boucher, Charley Graaskamp and Bronson Beaton. Marc-Antoine Turcotte made 29 saves in the win. Julian Galloway made 35 stops in the loss.

Ex-Sea Dogs on the Remparts: None

Random stat/fact: The Maple Leafs signed Dmytro Timashov to an entry-level contract on Monday. He was a fifth-round pick of Toronto in this year’s NHL Draft.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Sea Dogs Need More Home Cooking

As frustratingly inconsistent as the Sea Dogs have been overall this season, they also haven’t been too hot at home.

Heading into tomorrow’s 7 p.m. tilt against the Quebec Remparts, the Sea Dogs are just 6-5-0-0 on Harbour Station ice this season. While it's still early and the Dogs have played four more games on the road than at home, their .633 road winning percentage is quite higher than their home rate of .545.

Only eight teams in the league have six or fewer wins at home this season.

Typically, good teams can get away with being average on the road but strong at home. The fact that Saint John sits sixth overall in the QMJHL standings while being just one game over the .500 mark at home is, in a way, impressive.

The Dogs still have plenty of time to turn things around at home this season, and could turn things around quite quickly with four of their next five games being played at Harbour Station. While Saint John is sporting a respectable 15-10-1-0 record for a .596 winning percentage, that pace will be hard to maintain if the team can’t improve their home ice performance.

Some other news and notes…
  • Along with hosting the Remparts tomorrow night, the Sea Dogs will take on the Sherbrooke Phoenix on Friday night at 7:30 p.m. at the Station.
  • Tomorrow night is Bingo Night in support of The Empty Stocking Fund. Fans are asked to make a donation to the fund in exchange for a bingo card. The recommended minimum donation is $2.
  • Friday’s game will feature the first ever Star Wars Night at a Sea Dogs game. Space legend Darth Vader will perform the ceremonial puck drop.
  • Three Sea Dogs made NHL Central Scouting’s list of players to watch for the 2016 NHL Draft. Luke Green was given a “B” rating, indicating a second- or third-round pick. Oliver Felixson and Nathan Noel were given “C” ratings, indicating fifth- or sixth-round picks.
  • Last Friday’s Sea Dogs-Drakkar game – which rattled us all - featured only 24 total minutes in penalties, which has to be some kind of historic low for a Sea Dogs-Drakkar game.

Photo: Marc Henwood/Station Nation

Monday, November 23, 2015

Dempsey Traded To Capitals In Big Trade

The St. Stephen County Aces and Summerside Western Capitals have completed a huge MHL trade.

The Aces sent the rights to former Sea Dogs forward and Boston Bruins draft pick Mitchell Dempsey to the Capitals in exchange for the rights to Halifax Mooseheads netminder Kevin Resop, a conditional first-round pick in the 2016 MHL draft, a conditional first-round pick in the 2017 draft and future considerations.

Dempsey has been floating around the ECHL this year on tryout agreements. On Nov. 9, the Manchester Monarchs released him from an amateur tryout agreement.

The 20-year-old forward has roots in St. Stephen, but the Aces sit in the MHL’s basement once again with only four wins in 21 games. Meanwhile, Summerside is stacked and boasts a league leading 17-4-0-0 record.

“Any time you can add some size, and play in your top six, we consider that a huge win,” said Capitals head coach and associate general manager Billy McGuigan in a news release. “We’re very happy to have Mitch, and looking forward to seeing him in the lineup.”

According to the Caps, Dempsey was expected to arrive in Summerside later this evening.

Dempsey was a seventh-round pick of the Bruins in 2013. The Sea Dogs picked up the Cambridge, Ont. native from the OHL last year and he went on to record eight goals and 17 assists in 60 regular season QMJHL games.

Summerside’s next game is on Thursday night against Pictou County.