MONCTON – Jeremy McKenna capped a four-point night with the game-winning goal late in the third period as the Moncton Wildcats defeated the Saint John Sea Dogs, 6-4, Friday at the Moncton Coliseum.
Mika Cyr scored twice for Moncton (2-1-0-0) while Simon Le Coultre, Jacob Pelletier and Jonathan Aspirot all had one apiece.
Alexis Girard and Cedric Pare registered a goal and an assist each for Saint John (0-3-1-0) while Anthony Boucher and Daniel Hardie also scored. William Poirier chipped in with two assists.
A scoring summary is available HERE.
The Wildcats opened the scoring five minutes into the first period when Le Coultre rifled a wrist shot from the top of the right circle that beat a screened Cody Porter, who was making his QMJHL debut in the Saint John goal.
Girard tied the game nearly three minutes later with his first QMJHL goal.
The second-year blueliner took a Joe Veleno pass at the left point and whistled a wrist shot past the glove of goalie Mark Grametbauer.
Saint John took the lead with a shorthanded goal with six-and-a-half minutes left in the period.
Boucher took a pass in the neutral zone, carried the puck down the right side and ripped a wrister that snuck past the blocker of Grametbauer to make it a 2-1 game.
But Moncton evened the score again less than a minute later, moments after that power play opportunity expired.
Pelletier pounced on a turnover in front of the Saint John net and chipped it past a helpless Porter.
Hardie gave the Sea Dogs the lead again with a power play goal one minute into the second.
Pare took a pass below the goal line on the left wing side and saw Hardie backing into the slot. The native of Brampton, Ontario, sent a one-timer past Grametbauer’s blocker.
Moncton made it 3-3 with five minutes left in the middle frame when the rebound of a Welsh point shot that went off the end boards and came out in front of the net to Porter’s right. Aspirot deposited it past a helpless goaltender.
Two minutes later, Jeremy McKenna tried a shot from the right side that deflected in front of the goal. Cyr redirected the puck off the right post and in.
A Pare power play goal squared the affair again with 2.3 seconds left in the period.
A turnover in Wildcat territory saw the puck go to Hardie in the left circle. He laid a soft pass across the slot to Pare. The Boston Bruins’ prospect hammered a one-timer past Grametbauer’s glove hand.
It was a 4-4 game after forty minutes.
Moncton scored the winner with just over seven minutes remaining, moments after killing off a penalty.
Pelletier grabbed the puck on the right side of the neutral zone and sent McKenna in on a breakaway. The second-year winger snapped a quick wrist shot past Porter’s glove.
Cyr added an empty-netter with under three minutes to go.
Grametbauer earned the win with 30 stops. Porter made 29 saves in the loss.
McKenna’s four-point night made him first star while Pelletier took second star with a goal and an assist. Pare was named third star with two points in front of 5,617 fans in attendance.
The Sea Dogs’ next home game is Wednesday, October 4th, at 7 p.m. against the Acadie-Bathurst Titan at Harbour Station. Tickets are available at the Harbour Station Box Office and online.
Sea Dogs Season Tickets are available for purchase at the Harbour Station Box Office until Friday, October 13th. Click HERE for more information. Fans wishing to buy using a payment plan can do so at the Sea Dogs Administration Office on the pedway level of Harbour Station.
(Photo courtesy Dan Cublerson/Saint John Sea Dogs)