Saturday, October 24, 2015

V-Reds Salvage Tie Against Crimson

UPDATE: The Harvard website has a game recap posted, complete with highlights and post-game comments from head coach Ted Donato.

In what is becoming a fairly common refrain this season, the University of New Brunswick Varsity Reds scored two 3rd period goal to erase a 3-1 deficit and settled for a 3-3 tie against the NCAA's Harvard Crimson. This completes an impressive exhibition stretch against NCAA/AHL teams this season in which the V-Reds went 3-1-1.

- Matt Petgrave (Halley, Carroll) got UNB on the board 3:13 into the game when he took a drop pass and rifled a shot past Crimson netminder Michael Lackey.

- From there special teams was the story of the game with the final 5 goals all coming by way of the power play. Harvard scored with the man advantage at 18:16 of the 1st period to tie the game before adding two more in the 2nd period - at 4:57 on a two man advantage and then at 14:03 on a 5 minute major to Philippe Halley - to take a 3-1 lead into the 3rd period.

- The Varsity Reds answered with a pair of power play goals in the final 20 minutes to tie it up. Rob Mignardi (Caissy, Gazzola) drew UNB back within a goal at 8:24. However, the momentum was stalled two minutes later when Francis Beauvillier was assessed a 5 minute major and game misconduct. UNB killed off the penalty and made Harvard pay for taking a penalty with just under two minutes remaining. Cam Critchlow (Mignardi, Gazzola) was able to square the game with only 88 seconds remaining. The V-Reds successfully killed off a late penalty that carried over into overtime and neither team was able to find the back of the net in the 5 minutes of extra time, resulting in a 3-3 tie.

- UNB once again played shorthanded as Stephen Anderson, Jordan Murray, and Marcus McIvor all remained out of the line-up while Philippe Maillet (illness) took the pre-game warm-up but didn't play, leaving them with only 15 skaters. The problem was further exacerbated when Philippe Halley and Francis Beauvillier were handed 5 minute majors and game misconducts. It is unclear how this will affect their availability for Friday night's game against Acadia, but if they are forced to sit out another game (like they would have to if they were ejected from a CIS game) that could leave UNB in a very tough position with the possibility playing several players short.

- It sounds like the officiating was a bit "questionable" in this one. UNB went 2 for 4 on the power play while Harvard had 8 opportunities, including two that were for 5 minutes, and scored 3 times.

- Overall UNB picked up 44 minutes in penalties on 11 infractions and Harvard was assessed 5 minor penalties for 10 penalty minutes. The V-Reds played over 19 minutes of the game shorthanded while spending under 5 minutes with the man advantage. To be fair, those numbers are skewed a tad since UNB scored early on two of their power plays.

- UNB certainly carried the play at even strength. 

- Shots in the game were 30-23 for Harvard. Period totals were 12-6, 8-7, 8-8, and 2-2.

- Etienne Marcoux went the distance in goal and was solid in stopping 27 out of 30 shots.

- After dominating the face-off circle against Maine UNB struggled tonight, only winning 29 out of 65.

- Attendance was 355.

- UPEI was the only other AUS team in action tonight, falling 7-0 to Dartmouth on exhibition play.

- The V-Reds are back to conference play next weekend with a pair of huge games at the AUC. On Friday night they entertain the Acadia Axemen before welcoming the Saint Mary's Huskies the next night for a Halloween night affair. Both games are set for a 7PM start.