Thursday, October 4, 2012

Pirates Get By V-Reds in Shootout

UPDATE: The Maine Hockey Journal has much more on today's game. Chris Roy says the "Pirates earn passing grade in first pre-season test" while Nathan Fournier points out that "Familiar faces suit up for the University of New Brunswick." Both are worth a read. They have also posted a bunch of pictures from the game on their Facebook page.

The University of New Brunswick Varsity Reds traveled south of the border today for an afternoon scrimmage against the AHL's Portland Pirates and came away on the wrong side of a 2-1 shootout decision.

The game remained scoreless until late in the second period when Jordan Szwarz beat UNB goalie Travis Fullerton to give the Pirates - the top affiliate of the NHL's Phoenix Coyotes - a 1-0 lead heading into the final period. The V-Reds would tie the game with 11:59 left in the third period when rookie Cam Braes skated through the crease and backhanded a shot over the Pirates Mike Lee. In overtime Tyler Carroll had a great chance to give UNB the victory when he had a breakaway with a minute remaining but his shot hit the post and stayed out. The game then went to a shootout where Chris Brown and Szwarz scored for the Pirates, giving them the win.

Despite the loss the V-Reds can take a lot of positives out of this game. From some accounts the Pirates dressed a full AHL squad, one which included top prospects Brandon Gormley (13th overall, 2010) and David Rundblad (17th overall, 2009), former Team Canada World Junior goalie Mark Visentin (who played the first part of the game), and the Canadian Hockey League's top scorer from last season Brendan Shinnimin. The fact that the Varsity Reds were able to push an AHL team featuring some pretty highly regarded players to a shootout should only help them going forward.

- 4 former Lewiston MAINEiacs suited up for UNB in today's game - Chad Denny, Antoine Houde-Caron, Cameron Critchlow, and Travis Fullerton.

- Former St. FX defenceman Mark Louis was in the Pirates line-up. He signed a professional contract earlier this summer.

- The V-Reds are back in action on Saturday night when they travel to Chestnut Hill to face the defending NCAA champion Boston College Eagles at the Conte Forum. Game time is scheduled for 8pm AST.