Saturday, October 30, 2010

V-Reds get Revenge on Panthers

The University of New Brunswick Varsity Reds ensured that there would not be a repeat of their season opening loss to the UPEI Panthers men's hockey team, as they controlled the game from start to finish in the 4-1 win, outshooting the visitors 41-19 in the game. The V-Reds offense was led by the first line, with Hunter Tremblay (Timmins, ON) scoring a goal plus assisting on the goals from linemates Jordan Clendenning (Fredericton, NB) and Chris Culligan (Howie Center, NS) in front of 2303 fans. With their fourth win in a row, UNB moves into a first place tie with StFX in the AUS standings.

There was a good pace to the game from the opening faceoff at the Aitken University Centre in Fredericton. The V-Reds speed drew the Panthers into penalties fairly early in the game, and on the second UNB power play Hunter Tremblay was deep in the UPEI zone with two open teammates to pass to. He elected to go through the slot to Clendenning who one-timed the puck past Mark Guggenberger (Richfield, MN) at 12:18. A minute later Dion Campbell (Melville, SK) was held up in front of the Panthers bench on a line change, and UNB was called for too many men on the ice. However on the penalty it was the V-Reds getting the best scoring chance, when Guggenberger was forced to make a big save with his right pads on Culligan. Late in the period UNB goaltender Derek Yeomans (St. Albert, AB) was tested, when he was forced to make a save off the streaking Jordan Knox (Skinner's Pond, PE) on a breakaway. The shots in the first period were 13-5 for UNB, and indicative of the territorial play.

The Panthers had a power play early in the second period, but it was UNB getting the two-on-one the other way. Tremblay snapped a pass cross-ice to Culligan who tipped the puck past Guggenberger who did the splits in trying to make the save2:41. UNB kept up the pressure and scored again at 7:46 when Jeff Lee worked the puck down low on the cycle, then bulldozed his way from behind the net on a wraparound attempt, and Luke Lynes (Rochester Hills, MI) knocked in the rebound for his first goal of the season. Although UNB was dictating most of the play, UPEI did get their opportunities. After Yeomans made a big save on Mike MacIsaac (O'Leary, PE) the Panthers kept up the pressure on the cycle until Matt Carter (Mississauga, ON) finally solved the UNB netminder at 14:36. A few minutes later UNB was on the power play, and their best scoring chance was when Nick Layton (Salisbury, NB) rang his shot off the crossbar after a sequence of crisp passing. At the end of the period one of the Panthers put the puck into the UNB net after the whistle had gone, which drew a crowd including V-Reds captain Kyle Bailey (Ponoka, AB). When the scrum was over both Bailey and UPEI's Cory Vitarelli (Peterborough, ON) were given roughing penalties to commence at the start of the third period. Shots in the second period favoured UNB 13-7.

The third period was much like the second, with UNB dominating the play. Nick MacNeil (Creignish, NS) hit the left post with a loud clang just over two minutes in, and that was the V-Reds' best scoring chance until five minutes later, when Tremblay was alone at the edge of the crease to tip in a pass from Clendenning at 7:16. That was the end of the scoring in the game, which saw UNB outshoot UPEI 15-7 in the final period and 41-19 on the night. The V-Reds were 1-for-5 on the power play while the Panthers went 0-for-5.

After the game UNB head coach Gardiner MacDougall noted that the biggest difference when comparing the win over UPEI with the loss on opening night in Charlottetown was hard work. ?Our whole game revolves around work ethic and having all four lines going. Tonight we got contributions from everyone, and our penalty kill was good, plus got a shortie. MacDougall singled out the energy line for their work, and in particular Nick Layton, who probably had his best game as a V-Red.

Hunter Tremblay echoed his coach in basing the difference in the game outcomes on hard work. He offered that his line hasn't been quite executing the last two weeks, but they played better as a unit in this game. Tremblay was also quick to point out that despite the lopsided shooting advantage UNB goalie Derek Yeomans played well, and he had to face some tough shots.

Three Stars: 1. Hunter Tremblay 2. Chris Culligan 3. Ryan Seymour

Saturday night the Varsity Reds travel east on the Trans-Canada to Moncton to play les Aigles Bleus, while the Panthers stay in Fredericton and play the St. Thomas Tommies.

1 comment:

Ed Trail said...

Watched most of the game on SSN. Sure appreciate the opportunity. Great game by the VReds keeping the up tempo game plan throughout the game. Still looking for the defence to improve in their own end. Plenty of talent in the remaining "D" pool but can sometimes find themselves in trouble in their own end by being a little too finesse advancing the puck.