Saturday, December 29, 2018

UNB Pulls Away From 'Horns

After a four week layoff, the #1 nationally ranked University of New Brunswick Reds picked up right where they left off as they pasted the visiting Lethbridge Pronghorns 8-3 in the 14th annual Peterbilt Pete Kelly Cup tonight at the AUC. The Pronghorns entered the game with a conference record of 5-9-2 this season, good for 6th place in the Canada West conference. The Reds, of course, are the only team in the country without a regulation loss thus far, going 15-0-3.

It looked like it was going to be a long night for the visitors right from the get-go as UNB dominated puck possession and took 10 out of the first 11 shots of the game. They got on the board 5:09 into the game when Mark Rassell (Dove-McFalls, Anderson) beat goaltender Taz Burman with a wrist shot from the high slot. It took the same trio only six - yes, six - seconds to score again, as Anderson got the puck off the ensuing face-off win by Dove-McFalls and fed Rassell on a two-on-one to make it 2-0. However, the Pronghorns turned the tide over the middle half of the period, generating a number of high quality chances among the seven or eight straight shots they threw at Alex Dubeau. The Reds weathered the storm and were able to extend the lead at 12:42, just 15 seconds into their first power play of the game. Christopher Clapperton, stationed on the half-wall, worked the puck down to Kris Bennett below the goal line before Bennett quickly bumped it out to Mark Simpson, who was stationed at the bottom of the face-off circle for a one-timer into the far corner. The Pronghorns cracked the scoreboard at 18:58 when Torrin White got the last touch of the puck on a scramble at the side of the goal. UNB would take the 3-1 lead into the intermission after out-shooting Lethbridge 17-11 in the period.

Much like the opening period the Reds were all over the Pronghorns to open the middle frame, but on their first chance of the period Sam McKechnie slid the puck in to cut the lead to 3-2 at 3:01. A Lethbridge penalty 11 seconds later would prove to be costly. After Tyler Boland hustled back to break up a potential shorthanded odd-man rush Simpson picked up the loose puck and skated into the offensive zone begorw executing a give-and-go with Clapperton to perfection to make it 4-2 with his second goal of the night at 3:49. Kris Bennett restored the three goal lead at 9:45 while shorthanded when he pounced on a turnover at the UNB blue line and split the defence, going in all alone on Burman and beating him with a backhanded shot between the legs. The Pronghorns quickly got that one back, though, when the puck ping-ponged through the slot and beat a helpless Dubeau at 10:10. The game would remain 5-3 through 40 minutes as they narrowly out-shot Lethbridge 14-13 in the period.

The 3rd period was all UNB as the shots favoured them 14-7 and they accounted for all three goals scored in the period. The goals were the result of a Randy Gazzola (Bennett, Boucher) wrist shot at 0:58, a Tyler Boland (Clapperton, Anderson) short breakaway at 10:10, and a Rassell (Boucher, Simpson) rebound to complete the scoring - and his hat-trick - at 17:52.

- The Reds iced almost a full line-up with defenceman Marcus McIvor the lone scratch.

- Shots in the game were 45-31 for UNB. The 31 shots allowed are a season-high for UNB and many of them were of the high quality variety as Lethbridge was able to find open space in the offensive zone throughout the game.

- Alex Dubeau and Rylan Parenteau split the goaltending duties. Dubeau surrendered three goals on 18 shots in 30:10 of work while Parenteau stopped all 13 shots he faced over the last 29:50.

- UNB went 2 for 4 on the power play. Lethbridge, who have operated at an abysmal 7% this season, went 1 for 6 and looked very dangerous most of the night with the man advantage.

- The Reds won 41 out of 70 face-offs on the night. Simpson was a beast, winning 15 out of 18.

- Rassell was named the player of the game. Simpson and former St. Thomas Tommie Connor Sanvido were the other two stars.

- Eight Reds had multi-point efforts with Bennett, Simpson, Clapperton, Anderson, and Rassell all going off for three points.

- Boland had a game-high six shots on goal.

- Attendance was 2500.

- This was the first ever meeting between UNB and Lethbridge.

- UNB improves to 18-2-0 in their last 20 games against Canada West competition. Their two losses both came at the hands of the Alberta Golden Bears - in the 2008 and 2015 University Cup final.

- The regular season resumes this upcoming weekend at the AUC. UNB hosts Saint Mary's on Friday night and then the Acadia Axemen the next night. Game time is 7PM for both contests.

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Reds Play Pivotal Role In Series Win

Five UNB players, along with head coach Gardiner MacDougall, participated in the annual series between U Sports all-stars and Hockey Canada's World Junior prospects this past week in Victoria, BC. It was an impressive showing for the Reds as they helped the U Sports team to a pair of victories following an opening game shoot-out loss.

In the series opener on Wednesday night, Christopher Clapperton scored early in the 2nd period and Alberta's Luke Philp tied the game with nine seconds remaining in regulation before Team Canada finally emerged with a 3-2 victory after a nine round shoot-out. U Sports out-shot Canada by a 38-30 margin.

The following night Team Canada held a 3-2 lead late in the 2nd period until Kris Bennett and Mark Simpson scored 57 seconds apart to give U Sports a 4-3 advantage through 40 minutes. Clapperton picked up assists on both goals. St. FX's Holden Cook scored an insurance goal midway through the 3rd period as U Sports picked up the 5-3 win. While they did not show up on the score-sheet, Marcus McIvor and Matt Murphy were both instrumental in helping kill off six out of seven Team Canada power plays. Shots in the game were 32-20 for U Sports.
 
The final game of the series went Friday afternoon and it was an impressive 5-1 victory for the U Sports squad with Bennett (2 goals), Clapperton (1 goal, 1 assist), and Simpson (2 assists) all registering multi-point games. Team Canada held a 33-28 advantage in shots on goal.

- Clapperton had a series-high five points in the three games while Bennett led everyone with his three goals.

- U Sports improves to 4-0-1 in the last two years against Team Canada.

- The five Reds representatives will try to keep the momentum going later this month when they - along with the rest of their teammates - play host to the Lethbridge Pronghorns on December 29th in the annual Pete Kelly Challenge.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Clapperton Wins Monthly Honour

Forward and AUS leading scorer Christopher Clapperton has been announced as the UNB Reds/Valley Graphics male Athlete of the Month for November.

After getting off to a bit of a slow start - at least by his lofty standards - with eight points in his first nine games this season, the diminutive 4th year winger found the score sheet in all eight of UNB's games in November, totaling eight goals and ten assists to vault to the top of the conference scoring race. He was also a +11 and had three game-winning goals during the month.

For the season Clapperton has amassed a league-leading 27 points and five game-winning goals. However, perhaps most importantly, is that after playing in only 43 out of 60 regular games the last two seasons, Clapperton has suited up for all 18 games thus far.

Clapperton, along with four of his teammates, will head to Victoria next week as members of the U Sports all-star team for a trio of games against Canada's world junior team prospects

Five Reds Named To All-Star Team

Five members of the #1 nationally ranked University of New Brunswick Reds - forwards Christopher Clapperton, Kris Bennett, and Mark Simpson, along with defencemen Marcus McIvor and Matt Murphy - have been named to the 25 player U Sports All-Star team that will face Canada's world junior team prospects next week in Victoria, British Colombia. Head coach Gardiner MacDougall will serve as an assistant coach for the squad.

UNB led the way with their five selections. The Calgary Dinos - whose head coach Mark Holwell will be serving the same role in Victoria - placed four members on the team with Alberta and Saskactehwan each contributing three players. There were only three other AUS players selected - Saint Mary's Huskies forward Hunter Garlent (returning for a second straight year), Huskies defenceman Alex Peters, and St. FX X-Men forward Holden Cook, who made the team for a third straight year.

Current Reds Randy Gazzola and Stephen Anderson represented UNB at last year's event.

After years of playing a pair of games against one another, this will be the first time the series will include a third contest. The Reds contingent is expected to travel across the country on Monday in preparation for their first game on Wednesday, December 12th (10PM AST). They will also play on Thursday, December 13th (10PM AST) and Friday, December 14th (6PM AST).

You can hear interviews with the five Reds players here.

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

U Sports Top Ten (#10): Reds Complete First Half Sweep

For the 10th time in as many polls the University of New Brunswick Reds are the top ranked men's hockey team in the country.

UNB was the unanimous choice, picking up all 15 first place media votes as well as 150 ELO points for a perfect total of 300 combined points. The Alberta Golden Bears (259) and Saskatchewan Huskies (246) remain 2nd and 3rd, respectively, after the two split their two game series last weekend. The Ottawa Gee Gees are up a spot to 4th with 207 points while the Queen's Gaels (148) make the biggest move in going from 8th to 5th.

The rest of the top ten is made up of the Ryerson Rams (139), Brock Badgers (97), Saint Mary's Huskies (95), Carleton Ravens (63), and McGill Redmen (41).

The St. FX X-Men (7) and UPEI Panthers (2) were among four teams to receive honourable mention.

Boland Picks Up Pair Of Awards

Reds forward Tyler Boland capped off an outstanding first semester by being named both the UNB Reds/Papa John's Pizza and Subway AUS male athlete of the week. 

Boland played a key role in both of UNB's road victories this past weekend. On Friday night he scored two goals and had an assist in a crucial 7-4 win over the 2nd place Saint Mary's Huskies. The next night he assisted on the eventual game winning goal in the Reds 5-1 win against Acadia. 

After joining UNB as a highly rated recruit prior to last season the 6', 194 pound Boland posted a solid rookie campaign with 7 goals, 20 assists, and a +20 rating while playing all 30 regular season games. He added a point per game during the AUS playoffs (5 points) and University Cup (3 points). However, the native of Saint John's, Newfoundland has elevated his game to another level thus far this year, currently sitting 2nd in the league in scoring with 13 goals and 13 assists in 18 games. He is also a league-best +19.

Boland and the rest of his teammates are back in action on Saturday, December 29th when they face the 2019 University Cup host Lethbridge Pronghorns at 7PM at the AUC.

Saturday, December 1, 2018

UNB Enter Break On High

The University of New Brunswick Reds wrapped up the first portion of their season with a win tonight in Wolfville, defeating the Acadia Axemen 5-1. For the second consecutive season UNB will enter the Christmas break with a 15-0-3, sitting comfortably in the top spot in the AUS.

The game got off to a bit of a slow start with minimal shots on goal and scoring chances in the early going. This changed at 7:46 when the Reds got on the board. Mark Simpson made a nice play to keep the puck in the offensive zone, finding Marcus McIvor with a pass along the blue line. McIvor then put the puck towards the net just as Matthew Boucher was gliding in front of the goal and the rookie forward was able to get a stick on it and get it past Logan Flodell. This was the only goal in a period in which UNB out-shot the Axemen 9-7.

The Reds blew the game open early in the 2nd period, striking for three goals in the first 4:19 of the frame. At 1:21 Christopher Clapperton (Boland, Anderson) took advantage of a defensive zone turnover by the Axemen to make it 2-0 and then, just 47 seconds later, Alexandre Goulet weaved through the slot on a delayed penalty before backhanding the puck in for an unassisted marker to push the cushion to three goals. This proved to be the end of the night for Flodell as he was replaced by Dawson Carty in the Acadia goal. The move quickly proved futile as Kris Bennett completed the onslaught minutes later when he took McIvor's long lob pass from inside the Reds zone at the Axemen blue line and beat Carty on a breakaway. The Axemen were able to get on the board at 6:04 when Loch Morrison collected a loose puck just off a face-off and found Rylan Parenteau's five-hole for his first career goal to make it 4-1. After the four goal flurry the game remained without a goal for the remainder of the period. Shots were 13-7 for UNB in the period.

The Reds would add the only goal of the 3rd period with Goulet (Boudens, Cooper) finishing off a nice passing play with his second of the night at 14:00. He later had a short breakaway with a chance to complete the hat-trick, but was denied. Shots in the final period favoured UNB 11-8 as they rolled to their fourth straight win over the Axemen this season.

- Noah Carroll was in the line-up for the first time since October 27th. He took the place of Matt Murphy on the blue line. Patrick Watling and James McEwan remained sidelined.

- Shots in the game were 33-22 for UNB.

- Acadia was 0 for 6 on the power play. The Reds had a rare scoreless night with the man advantage, going 0 for 2. This is only the 4th time this season they failed to score a power play goal and had been an absurd 9 for 15 on the power play against Acadia through their first three meetings.

- The Reds were called for two Too Many Men On Ice penalties. They also had one last night against Saint Mary's.

- UNB also uncharacteristically struggled at the face-off circle, winning only 23 out of 52 draws.

- Goulet was named the player of the game. Axemen forward Jack Flaman and Matthew Boucher were the other two stars.

- The Axemen were missing four regulars and only played with 16 skaters.

- Rylan Parenteau was solid in net in improving to 8-0-1 on the season. While he wasn't forced to make many really tough saves, the Axemen had a number of close calls around the crease throughout the game that weren't reflected on the shot clock.

- Christopher Clapperton (10 goals, 17 assists) and Tyler Boland (13 goals, 13 assists) enter the break ranked 1-2 in conference scoring. They are among six Reds who are averaging over a point per game thus far. Matthew Boucher (21 points), Stephen Anderson (20), Kris Bennett (20), and Cameron Brace (18 in 16 games) are the others.

- As mentioned, UNB was also 15-0-3 at this time last season. The only other time prior to these last two seasons they went through their pre-Christmas schedule without a regulation loss was 2009/2010 when they won all 15 games before Christmas.

- The Reds are 77-4-10 in conference play since the beginning of the 2016 calendar year. This also corresponds to the addition of Christopher Clapperton to the team.

- The other two games on the schedule tonight both went in UNB's favour. The UPEI Panthers defeated the 2nd place Saint Mary's 4-3 in Halifax and the Moncton Aigles Bleus picked up a 3-2 home win against the 3rd place St. FX X-Men.

- Here is how the standings look (NOTE - Not all teams have played the same number of games)

UNB = 15-0-3 (33 points in 18 games)
SMU = 11-6-1 (23 points  in 18 games)
St. FX = 9-7-2 (20 points in 18 games)
UPEI = 9-6-1 (19 points in 16 games)
UdeM = 8-7-3 (19 points in 18 games)
ACA = 5-10-2 (12 points in 17 games)
DAL = 4-13-0 (8 points in 17 games)

- The Reds are now off for 28 days. They next play on Saturday, December 29th when they host the Lethbridge Pronghorns of Canada West for an exhibition game at the AUC. Game time is 7PM.

Friday, November 30, 2018

Reds Strengthen Hold On First

A week after being dealt a 4-3 overtime loss on home ice, the #1 nationally ranked University of New Brunswick Reds exacted a measure of revenge on their rivals from Saint Mary's, posting an emphatic 7-4 win in Halifax tonight. UNB moves to 14-0-3 on the season and now lead the 11-5-1 Huskies by eight points for top spot in the conference.

Although it was a high scoring game, the opening twenty minutes was an evenly played, scoreless period with UNB holding a slight 12-9 advantage in shots on goal.

The offense finally broke through early in the 2nd period on an abbreviated power play with Tyler Boland (LeBlanc, Gazzola) getting in behind the defence and picking up a rebound before flipping the puck over Eric Brassard's out-stretched right leg at 3:05. Just under two minutes later Cameron Brace (Boland, Clapperton) doubled the lead with a sharp angled shot from the corner that found the top shelf. The Huskies got on the board and cut into the lead at 12:06 when Calder Brooks got his own rebound and found Bradley Latour for a shot into a wide open net, past goaltender Alex Dubeau. It only took 2:04 for the Reds to respond and restore their two goal lead. While on the power play Cameron Brace worked the puck down to Mark Rassell near the goal and he quickly found Matthew Boucher at the far face-off circle for a one timer into the top of the net. UNB would take the 3-1 lead into the 3rd period after a period in which each team had eight shots apiece.

Last week UNB came out flat in the 3rd period and allowed the Huskies to tie the game before eventually falling on overtime. This was not the case in this one as the Reds out-shot SMU 18-6 and found the back of the net four more times to close it out. At 2:20 Stephen Anderson (LeBlanc, Dubeau) gathered a bouncing puck and went in on a partial breakaway, beating Brassard blocker side to make it 4-1. Moments later UNB thought they had another goal, but it was waved off due to a high stick. However, they were able to extend their lead at 4:28 with another power play marker with Mark Rassell (Boucher, Gatenby) getting the tip-in at the side of the net. The Huskies got that one back 37 seconds later with Nick Welsh sifting a shot from the point that found the back of the net for a power play goal. At 8:31 Boland (LeBlanc, Bennett) added his second of the night - and the team's 4th power play goal - when he worked a nice give and go, getting in behind a defender and flipping a backhander over Brassard's shoulder, ending the night of the Huskies goaltender. After some scrambled play in the Huskies zone that resulted in goaltender Marc Terriault losing his stick, Joe Gatenby (Goulet, Boudens) made it a 7-2 game at 13:39 with a wrist shot from the point. Saint Mary's added a pair of goals in the final 103 seconds to round out the scoring.

- Patrick Watling, James McEwan, and Noah Carroll were all out of the line-up.

- Shots were 38-23 for UNB.

- The Reds had another big night on the power play, connecting 4 times on 10 opportunities. Saint Mary's was 1 for 4.

- UNB is 8 for 16 with the man advantage in their last two games and are operating at a 28.6% clip for the season.

- The two teams split the 86 face-offs in the game, each winning 43. Tyler Boland (13 out of 20) had the best night for the Reds.

- Alex Dubeau improved to 7-0-2 on the season with the win.

- Attendance was 950.

- UNB has scored 5+ goals in 7 of their last 8 games. They outscored opponents 48-13 in 8 November games.

- In other action around the conference, Acadia picked up a much-needed win with a 5-2 decision over UPEI on home ice and Moncton defeated Dalhousie 4-1 in Moncton in a game that featured 96 shots on goal.

- The Reds wrap up the first portion of their schedule tomorrow night with a game against the Acadia Axemen in Wolfville. Game time is 7PM.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Reds Split Weekend Games

After letting a 3-1 lead disappear, leading to a 4-3 overtime loss to the Saint Mary’s Huskies on Friday night, the University of New Brunswick Reds used four power play goals to dump the visiting Acadia Axemen 6-1 this afternoon at the 3rd Annual Teddy Bear Toss game. UNB is now 13-0-3 on the season.

Scoring for UNB last night were Cameron Brace, Samuel Dove-McFalls, and Christopher Clapperton. Clapperton (2), Tyler Boland (2), Dove-McFalls, and Boucher found the back of the net this afternoon.

Rylan Parenteau was charged with the overtime loss with Alex Dubeau getting the win today.

UNB out-shot both opponents - 29-23 versus Saint Mary’s and 48-27 against the Axemen.

The Reds close out the first half of their schedule next weekend with rematches on the road. They are in Halifax on Friday night to face the Huskies and Wolfville on Saturday evening to square off with the Axemen. Both games are scheduled for a 7PM start.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Reds Pull Away Late, Topple Tigers

The University of New Brunswick Reds blew open a tight game with four 3rd period goals on their way to a 5-1 victory over the Dalhousie Tigers tonight in Halifax. UNB moves to 12-0-2 and maintain their firm grip on the top spot in the AUS while the Tigers bring up the rear with a mark of 2-11-0.

Although they out-shot the Tigers 23-7 in the 1st period and 18-12 in the 2nd, the Reds only held a 1-0 lead through 40 minutes and the goal was the result of a fortunate bounce. Late in the opening period a Tigers rush into the offensive zone ended up with a hit crossbar and the puck ricocheted all the way out the neutral zone, where Stephen Anderson picked it up and found himself on a breakaway. The forward streaked down the left wing and beat goaltender Reilly Pickard with a quick snap shot for an unassisted tally at 15:12. UNB had a golden opportunity to strike again just after the goal when Dalhousie took two penalties on the same play to hand the Reds a full two minute 5-on-3, but Pickard and the Tigers defense were up to the challenge and kept it a one goal game.

Despite continuous offensive pressure, the Reds were unable to extend their lead until the 3rd period and that is when the flood gates would open. At 2:05 Cameron Brace (McIvor) chased down a loose puck in the neutral zone before scoring with his patented move - a laser beam of a wrist shot into the top right corner - to double the lead. Just over two minutes later Tyler Boland (Boucher, Bennett) made it 3-0 when his shot from the left face-off circle hit a defenders stick on its way towards the net, fooling Pickard. The barrage continued at 5:54 with Anderson getting his fourth of the weekend. Samuel Dove-McFalls found Tristan Pomerleau pinching in from the blue line and the defenceman, after moving in towards the goal thanks to a wide open lane, fed Anderson to his right for a one-timer to push the lead to 4-0. Randy Gazzola (Clapperton, Boland) sifted a wrist shot through traffic for a power play goal at 15:50 to pad the stats. Unfortunately, the Tigers were able to spoil Alex Dubeau's shutout bid on a Dillon Boucher goal with only nine seconds remaining. Shots in the period were 13-8 for UNB.

-  James McEwan and Alexandre Goulet were back in the line-up. Noah Carroll, Patrick Watling, and Matt Boudens were all out with Boudens most likely serving a suspension after picking up a fighting major towards the end of Friday night's game against St. FX.

- Shots in the game were 54-27 for UNB as the Tigers were able to generate much more offense against the Reds than most teams have recently.

- Face-offs were 56-37 in favour of UNB. Tyler Boland led the way with 19 wins in 26 chances.

- UNB scored once on six power play chances. The Tigers came up empty on five opportunities.

- Stephen Anderson added to his Subway gift card collection by being named the player of the game for a third straight game. Pickard and Brace were the other two stars.

- Attendance was 235.

- Clapperton had a game-high nine shots on goal.

- Boland was +4 on the night and is now tied for 2nd in the league with a +15. UNB players currently hold 14 out of the top 18 +/- marks in the conference.

- In other AUS play tonight, UPEI scored a big 5-3 road win over St. FX and Saint Mary's overcame a four goal performance by Maxime St-Cyr to defeat Moncton 6-5 in overtime in the hub city.

- UNB is back at the AUC next weekend for their last two home games before the Christmas break. On Friday they host Saint Mary's at 7PM and then on Saturday they welcome the Acadia Axemen to to town for the 3rd annual Teddy Bear Toss in a game that is scheduled for 4PM. As an added incentive for fans to bring stuffed animals, if more than 1000 are collected every ticket holder will get 40% off their bill at the Snooty Fox following the game.


Twice Is Nice

For the second consecutive Friday night the #1 nationally ranked University of New Brunswick Reds and rival St. FX X-Men met - this time in Antigonish - and once again the final result was a dominating performance for UNB, this time to the tune of a 5-1 final score. The win allows the Reds to tighten their grip on 1st place as they improve to 11-0-2 on the season, five points clear of 2nd place Saint Mary's. The X-Men remain in 3rd place with a 7-4-2 mark, 8 points back.

The X-Men were in penalty trouble right from the get-go in this one, taking five minor penalties in the first nine minutes of the game, and Stephen Anderson made them pay twice. His first came as a 5-on-3 was winding down, converting a nice passing play with Christopher Clapperton and Olivier LeBlanc at 3:41. Then, at 9:59, Anderson (Boland, Bennett) struck again, pouncing on a rebound in front and easily depositing it around X-Men goalie Blade Mann-Dixon. After surrendering the first nine shots on goal of the game, St. FX were finally credited with their first of the night with 5:21 left in the period. A couple late power plays tilted the momentum in favour of the home side, but the Reds maintained their 2-0 lead through twenty minutes, holding a 10-7 advantage in shots.

Despite another five power plays handed out in the second period - three to St. FX and two to UNB - the game remained 2-0. Shots in the period were 10-3 for the Reds.

It only took 78 seconds for the Reds to extend their lead in the 3rd period and it was a beauty. Cameron Brace found Mark Simpson with a cross-ice pass on a 3-on-2 rush and, after the puck bounced off Simpson's stick while trying to corral the pass, he spun around and let loose a no-look backhand that found the back of the net. Clapperton picked up his second assist of the night on the goal. Exactly six-and-a-half minutes later Brace (Clapperton, Gazzola) finally got one of his own after being snake bitten the last couple of games. Clapperton had the puck along the half boards when he fed Gazzola who was rushing into the offensive zone. The veteran defenceman waited as Brace crossed from the near side of the goal to the far side before feeding the puck down low where Brace had plenty of time and space to lift the puck past the sprawling X-Men goaltender. The only hiccup of the night for UNB came at 9:23 when St. FX got their only goal of the night thanks to a 2-on-0 shorthanded rush that resulted in Sam Studnicka chipping the puck past Rylan Parenteau. The X-Men's frustration started to percolate late in the period after X-Men forward Anthony Difruscia - who went after Mark Rassell late in last week's game and was also assessed a double minor for butt-ending earlier in this game - was called for tripping at 11:06 after a dangerous play on Patrick Watling that should have been a kneeing penalty. The Reds didn't do anything on the ensuing power play but they did add their fifth of the night shortly after it expired at 13:28 with Rassell (Dove-McFalls, Anderson) digging a loose puck out a crowd in front of the net and firing it home. With the outcome no longer in doubt the X-Men's frustration finally reached it's boiling point in the final minute - which seems to be their MO - and once again it was Difruscia going after Watling, this time leveling the Reds forward from behind in front of the the St. FX goal. Matt Boudens took exception to the play and went after Difruscia with the two dropping their gloves and getting into a fight. They were both assessed 5 minute fighting majors with Difruscia also receiving an instigating and aggressor minor penalty. The remainder of the game was played without incident. Shots in the period were 9-2 for UNB.

- Patrick Watling saw his first action since October 19th, replacing James McEwan in the line-up. Alexandre Goulet and Noah Carroll remained out.

- Shots in the game were 29-12 for UNB.

- There were plenty of power plays in the contest. UNB went 2 for 11 while the X-Men were stymied on their six opportunities. Special teams continue to be a major strength for the Reds recently. They have scored a power play goal in 10 out of their last 11 games and killed 40 out of their last 42 shorthanded situations.

- Stephen Anderson was named the player of the game. Mark Rassell and Sam Studnicka were the other two stars.

- Face-offs were almost dead even with the X-Men winning 36 out of 71. Samuel Dove-McFalls had the best game for UNB, winning 13 out of 21.

- Rylan Parenteau improves to 7-0-0 on the season and 16-0-0 in his career. He leads the AUS with a sparkling 1.51 GAA and is 3rd with a 0.916 save percentage.

- Cameron Brace picked up his 100th career point with his assist on Mark Simpson's goal. He now has 101 points (43 goals, 58 assists) in 112 career regular season games. He now has 10 points in his last five games.

- Christopher Clapperton has 12 points in his last four games to take over the conference scoring lead with six goals and 14 assists for 20 points.

- Attendance was 574.

- Since Randy Gazzola returned from his injury, the Reds have given up only eight goals and 16.57 shots/game in seven games. In the six contests they played in his absence, they surrendered 14 goals and 21.83 shots/game.

- UNB has out-scored their opposition 27-3 in their last four games.

- They have won their last two games in Antigonish by a combined 10-1 score.

- The other two games scheduled for last night - UPEI at Dalhousie and Acadia at Moncton - were both postponed.

- The Reds travel to Halifax on Saturday night for a 7PM tilt against the Dalhousie Tigers.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Tigers Mauled By Reds

The torrid offensive pace the #1 nationally ranked University of New Brunswick Reds have been on recently continued this afternoon as they picked apart the visiting Dalhousie Tigers to the tune of 7-0 at the AUC in the 4th annual Rod Pike Memorial Game. It is the 3rd straight game - and 4th time in six game - the Reds have lit the lamp at least seven times. UNB improves to 10-0-2 on the season while the Tigers fall to 2-10-0.

The first five minutes of the game actually favoured the Tigers as they out-shot the Reds 3-0 in the early going. However, that did not last. UNB finally got their first shot on goal at 8:09 and it ended up in the back of the net and they never looked back. Kris Bennett opened the scoring with an unassisted marker after he picked a pass basically off of a Tigers defenceman's stick right in front of the net, made a move to his right to get goaltender Connor Hicks down, and then brought the puck back to his left and slid it between Hicks' out-stretched leg and the post. The Reds took advantage of another defensive zone turnover to extend the lead at 11:57. An attempted pass out of the zone landed on the stick of Christopher Clapperton just inside the blue line and he one-timed the puck past an unsuspecting Hicks and into the right corner of the net. Just 38 seconds later Samuel Dove-McFalls (Anderson, McIvor) roofed the puck just under the cross-bar from in tight to make it 3-0. UNB then capped a successful opening twenty minutes while on the power play at 17:19 when Stephen Anderson spotted Cameron Brace pinching in from the blue line. Brace out-waited Hicks to get him down and then circled behind the net before finding Mark Rassell camped out in the crease for a tap-in into an empty net. Shots in the period were 17-3.

The Reds would eventually make it 23 straight shots on goal in the early going of the 2nd period and also added another goal in the process at 1:06. Tyler Boland (Anderson, Pomerleau) grabbed a loose puck behind the net and wrapped it in on his backhand to push the advantage to 6-0. That proved to be the only goal of the period as Hicks held the fort the rest of the way despite seeing his team out-shot 22-7 in the stanza.

UNB put a bow on this one with a pair of goals 46 seconds apart in the 3rd period. At 6:37 James McEwan (Murphy) knocked down the puck at the centre line and skated down the left side, beating Hicks with a hard wrist shot on the far side for his first goal in a Reds uniform. Clapperton (Simpson, Brace) picked up his second of the night at 7:23 with a one-timer from the hash marks that just grazed the post on its way in. Considering the score the game was not overly chippy, but there was an odd moment after the final whistle when Alex Dubeau - serving as the back-up for this one - came off the bench and confronted Tigers forward/agitator Kelly Bent at centre ice. The two were quickly separated and the two teams shook hands like usual without any further incident. Shots in the period were 20-3 for UNB.

- Alexandre Goulet was out of the line-up in favour of James McEwan, who got into his second game of the regular season. Noah Carroll and Patrick Watling remained out.

- Shots in the game ended up 59-13 for UNB. They have out-shot their last three opponents 59-13, 55-19, and 46-8 (in 51 minutes) for an insane total of 160-40. They have out-scored those opponents 22-2.

- The Reds also hit the post at least three times during the game.

- After being held to 11 shots on goal in the 1st period against St. FX on Friday night, UNB registered 20+ shots on goal in four of the next five periods this weekend. They have also accomplished that feat five times in their last four games.

- UNB received the first two power plays of the game, scoring on one. Dalhousie then had the next six opportunities. The Reds improved their league-leading penalty kill to 92.1%.

- Rylan Parenteau wasn't tested much this afternoon but did what he had to do to pick up his second shutout of the season. After surrendering seven goals in his first two starts of the season, Parentau has only allowed three goals in his last five games. He is now 6-0-0 with a 1.59 GAA and 0.916 save percentage on the year.

- Stephen Anderson (3 assists), Christopher Clapperton (2 goals), and Tristan Pomerleau (assist, +4) were named the game's three stars.

- The Reds won 44 out of 69 face-offs despite Mark Simpson only winning 11 out of 24. Samuel Dove-McFalls (13 out of 19) and Tyler Boland (10 out of 13) picked up the slack to make up for Simpson's off-night.

- Joe Gatenby was +5 on the afternoon.

- Matt Boudens was the only UNB player not to record a shot on goal.

- Prior to the game Boudens - an alternate captain - was awarded the 2018 Rod Pike Memorial Scholarship, which is awarded to a UNB player "who has special leadership abilities, a high compete level, and goes the extra mile for the team and his teammates."

- Attendance was 1726.

- The last time UNB scored 7+ goals in three straight games? 1997, when they did it four straight times between November 9th and 16th. This is the first time they have done it under Gardiner MacDougall.

- UNB has now beaten Dalhousie 25 consecutive times at the AUC and 29 consecutive times overall.

- There was one other game in the AUS today and it saw the Acadia Axemen righting their ship a bit with a 5-1 home victory over Moncton.

- The Reds are on the road next weekend for rematches against this weekends opponents. On Friday night they are in Antigonish to face the St. FX X-Men and then on Saturday they travelt o Halifax to face the Dalhousie Tigers. Both games are scheduled for a 7PM start time.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Tonight's Game Rescheduled

Tonight's game at the AUC between the UNB Reds and Dalhousie Tigers has been postponed due to the Tigers being unable to make it across the Confederation Bridge because of high winds. It will now be played tomorrow afternoon at 3PM.

The St. FX/UPEI game has also been postponed with a make-up date planned for the second half of the season.

Friday, November 9, 2018

Reds Blast X-Men

While nothing will ever wipe away the bitter taste from their 5-4 overtime loss to the rival St. FX X-Men in last season's University Cup semi-final, the University of New Brunswick Varsity Reds made a big statement in the first chapter of the 2018-2019 rivalry, eviscerating the X-Men 8-1 tonight at the AUC. UNB remain unbeaten in regulation on the year, improving to 9-0-2 while St. FX (7-3-2) has their six game winning streak come to an end with a thud.

After a choppy opening few minutes that featured a number of icings and face-offs, the game settled into a fast-paced, back and forth affair which, at one point, saw the two teams play over seven minutes of uninterrupted hockey. The Reds got the only goal in what was a pretty evenly played period when Tyler Boland, who rang one squarely off the post earlier in the frame, finished a nice tic-tac-toe passing play with Christopher Clapperton and Stephen Anderson. Boland received a pass from the bottom of the face-off circle across the slot and easily deposited the puck into a wide open net at 17:22. Shots in the period narrowly favoured UNB 11-9.

Much like last Saturday night, the Reds came out for the 2nd period and blew the doors off the rink, playing one of the best periods of hockey you will ever see. They out-shot the X-Men 24-5 and pumped four goals past reigning U Sports goaltender of the year and AUS MVP Chase Marchand - and could have had more as their offensive pressure was relentless. At 6:08 Clapperton (LeBlanc, Brace) corralled a bouncing puck while also getting around a defender at the hash marks before beating Marchand on the backhand to make it 2-0. UNB took complete control of the game in the latter half of the period with three goals in 83 seconds. Matthew Boucher (Bennett, Murphy) pushed the lead to 3-0 at 13:50 when he took a pass across the neutral zone and went in for a breakaway goal. They then struck for two goals in 11 seconds with Mark Simpson (Bennett, Gazzola), after taking a nifty spin-o-rama pass from Kris Bennett at 15:02, and Boland (Anderson, Clapperton), with his second of the night on a rebound at 15:13, finding the back of the net. The latter goal ended the evening for Marchand as he was replaced in the X-Men goal by Blade Mann-Dixon.

The Reds let up a bit in the 3rd period with the game under control - they only out-shot the X-Men 20-5 and out-scored them 3-1. Kris Bennett (Goulet, Brace) joined the scoring party at 4:35 when he cut through the slot and slid a backhanded shot just inside the post to make it a 6-0 game. Almost exactly seven minutes later Boucher (Clapperton, Brace) one-timed the puck past Mann-Dixon just 15 seconds into a 5-on-3 man advantage. In what has become a common occurrence in recent seasons, once St. FX starts to have a game get away from them they tend to start gooning things up and try to goad the opposition into doing something unwise and tonight was certainly no exception. At 13:53 defenceman Aaron Hoyles (league-leading 120 PIM last season) went at it with Matt Boudens, handing the Reds a power play that turned into a two man advantage one second after the ensuing face-off when Sam Studnicka took a slashing penalty. While UNB didn't convert on the power play - and Matt Needham broke Alex Dubeau's shut-out bid shortly afterwards at 16:18 - the Reds did make the X-Men pay after the next scuffle they started at 18:00. With Regan Spears taking an undisciplined double-minor for continually harassing Alexandre Goulet and Anthony Difruscia mugging Mark Rassell, UNB went back on the power play and Oliver Cooper (LeBlanc, Gazzola) put the finishing touches on the laugher by tipping in a point shot at 18:16. That would make it 8-1 and that is how the game would end.

- UNB went with the same line-up as the last few games as Noah Carroll, Patrick Watling, and James McEwan all sat out.

- The final shots were 55-19. They were 9-9 at one point late in the 1st period.

- The Reds went 2 for 7 on the power play with the X-Men being held scoreless on five opportunities.

- St. FX was assessed 40 out of the 56 penalty minutes in the contest. UNB has been by-far the least penalized team in the conference thus far, accumulating 156 penalty minutes compared to 194 for the next lowest team. This is in stark contrast to recent history as they have ranked in the upper half of the league in penalty minutes in each of the last six seasons.

- Face-offs were 41-27 for UNB with Samuel Dove-McFalls leading the way with 14 wins in 18 attempts.

- Alex Dubeau was steady all night in goal in improving to 4-0-2 on the season with a 1.92 GAA and 0.919 save percentage.

- Clapperton (1 goal, 3 assists) was named the player of the game. Boland and Boucher (2 goals apiece) were the other two stars.

- Attendance was 2830.

- The X-Men were clearly missing top defenceman Cole MacDonald as the Reds carved up the X-Men defence all night, generating a pile of odd-man chances.

- This is UNB's biggest win over St. FX since a 9-2 victory in Antigonish on November 27th, 1994. They have not defeated the X-Men by more than six goals on home ice since before the 1968-69 season (as far back as the records go).

- In other AUS action tonight the Saint Mary's Huskies kept pace with a 4-2 home win over the Acadia Axemen and the Dalhousie Tigers snapped their nine game losing streak with a 4-3 shootout win against the UPEI Panthers in Charlottetown.

- The Reds are back on home ice tomorrow night when they welcome the Dalhousie Tigers to the AUC for the annual Rod Pike Memorial Game. Game time is scheduled for 7PM.

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Reds Lights Out Versus Panthers

The number one ranked University of New Brunswick Reds, mired in a rare two game losing streak, took out their frustration on the visiting UPEI Panthers with a lopsided 7–1 victory last night at the AUC. The game was delayed due to a power outage caused by high winds in the Fredericton area with 8:30 left in the 3rd period and then eventually called off as both coaches agreed to make it official. The win puts UNB at 8-0-2 on the season and all alone in 1st place, two points clear of St. FX with a game in hand.

Much like their previous game against Moncton, UNB had an impressive opening twenty minutes as they out-shot the Panthers 18-4 and jumped out to a 2-0 lead. The opening goal came at 4:42 when Matt Boudens got the puck to Alexandre Goulet for an uncontested wrist shot that was stopped by Panthers netminder Simon Hofley. The hard shot generated a rebound that came out to Oliver Cooper, who was all alone in front of the net, and the big forward made a quick move to his right before backhanding the puck past the goaltender. The Reds doubled their lead at 10:48 with a goal that showed just how funny hockey can be. After just missing a tap-in after a beautiful three way passing play, Christopher Clapperton (Boland, Anderson) found himself with the puck on the side wall. With no other option available, Clapperton decided to throw what appeared to be an innocent-looking shot towards. The puck bounced off of Hofley and into the net for a goal that the Panthers goalie would no doubt like to have back.

If the 1st period was impressive, the 2nd period was total domination. UNB held an 18-1 shot advantage and struck for four unanswered goals to effectively put the game away. At 2:54, while on the power play, freshman Mark Rassell (Boucher, Gatenby) notched his 5th of the season when he batted a juggling puck past Hofley before he could re-secure it in his glove. Oliver Cooper (Goulet, McIvor) scored his second of the game at 7:55 with the prettiest goal of the night. After stepping out of the penalty box, Cooper took a long stretch pass and went in all alone, turning Hofley inside out with a deke before sliding the puck into the left side of the cage. With the score now 4-0 the Panthers changed goalies, bringing in Matthew Mancina to try and stop the onslaught. However, it wouldn't make a difference on this night. Less than a minute later Clapperton took a centring pass from behind the night from Tyler Boland and quickly deposited it past Mancina. Mark Simpson (Brace, Rassell) capped the 2nd period outburst at 14:12 when he poked in a loose puck in the crease before it could be covered. For those scoring at home, after 40 minutes of play UNB had more goals (6) than UPEI had shots (5).

The Panthers got on the board 45 seconds into the 3rd period with Filip Rydstrom connecting on a 5-on-3 power play. This came as a result of the Reds bench being assessed an unsportsmanlike penalty after Matthew Boucher was given a cross-checking penalty. It didn't take long for UNB to respond with Tyler Boland (Anderson, Clapperton) finishing off a 2-on-1 rush with a one timer into an empty net.This would ultimately be the last goal of the night as the lights went out during play with 8:30 left in the game. Fortunately no one was injured during the few moments of darkness before the emergency lights came on. With their being no timetable for full power restoration - plus the fact that the result was not in doubt - both coaches decided to call the game and make it official.

- Shots in the game ended up being 46-8 for UNB.

- Noah Carroll, Patrick Watling, and James McEwan were all out of the line-up.

- UNB was 1 for 4 on the power play while the Panthers were 1 for 6.

- The two teams split the 76 face-offs in the game. Samuel Dove-McFalls had the best night for UNB with 11 wins on 16 draws.

- 12 different players had points for UNB.

- Rylan Parenteau got the start in goal and obviously was not tested very often, finishing with 7 saves on 8 shots.

- Attendance was 2028 on a nasty night in the capital region.

- The Reds have beaten the Panthers 16 straight times at the AUC.

- This was the lone game in the conference on Saturday night.

- Up next for UNB (8-0-2) is a 1st place showdown with the suddenly hot St. FX X-Men (7-2-2) - winners of 6 in a row - on Friday night at the AUC. They then host the Dalhousie Tigers the next night. Both contests are scheduled for 7PM.


Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Aigles Bleus End Lengthy Streak

The Universite de Moncton Aigles Bleus entered tonight's game against the #1 ranked University of New Brunswick Reds having lost their previous 14 meetings between the two teams - and 26 out of 27 - but they were able to exercise some demons in a back and forth 4-3 shootout victory this evening in Moncton.

- Cameron Brace (Boucher, Gatenby) had the lone goal of the opening period when he pounced on a rebound at the lip of the crease and slid it in for a power play goal at 9:53.

- Moncton knotted the game at 2:42 of the 2nd period on a Robbie Graham marker that UNB unsuccessfully argued should have been goaltender interference as Alex Dubeau was bumped and lost his helmet on the play. They took the lead at 9:16 with Marc-Anthony Therrien finishing off an odd-man rush.

- Shortly after the Therrien goal UNB went back to the power play and appeared to tie the game when Tyler Boland's slap shot cleanly beat Aigles Bleus goaltender Etienne Montpetit, but Kris Bennett was called for interference in front of the net mere moments before the puck went it, negating the goal. At 18:34 they got a power play goal that counted though, with Mark Rassell (Boucher, Brace) re-directing a hard pass at the side of the net into the top corner to tie the game at 2 after two periods of play.

- Moncton gained the lead back 4:33 into the 3rd period after Edouard Michaud undressed a defender on a one-on-one play before finding sniper Maxime St. Cyr in the slot for the go-ahead tally. The lead was short-lived however, as Matt Murphy (Boucher, McIvor) found the top right corner off of a rush 30 seconds later to quiet the home crowd.

- After a scoreless final 15 minutes of regulation and 5 minute 3-on-3 overtime session - in which UNB held a slight edge in play - the game headed to a shootout where the first 9 shooters failed to convert before Carl Marois finally netted the game winning goal. 

- Shots in the game favoured UNB 47-27 with period totals of 20-4, 17-14, 7-7, and 3-2.

- Marcus McIvor was back in the line-up after serving a two game suspension for a hit on Saint Mary's forward Anthony Repaci two weekends ago. He replaced Noah Carroll on the blue line. Forwards Patrick Watling and James McEwan remained out.

- UNB went 2 for 5 on the power play. Moncton was 0 for 8, which included a four minute advantage late in the game.

- The Reds won 47 out of 76 face-offs.

- This was UNB's first look at Aigles Bleus standout rookie netminder Etienne Monpetit and he did not disappoint. After missing the first two meetings of the season due to injury Montpetit certainly lived up to the billing as a potential game changer by stopping 44 out of 47 shots plus all five shoot-out attempts. 

- At the other end of the rink Alex Dubeau had a solid night in his own right, turning aside 24 out of 27 shots directed his way.

- Attendance was 484.

- While UNB drops to 7-0-2 on the season the Aigles Bleus improve to 5-3-2, giving them more wins and points than they had all of last season.

- It was another night of closely contested games around the AUS tonight. St. FX won their 5th in a row with a 2-1 home victory over Saint Mary's and Acadis snapped their recent slide with a 2-1 win in Wolfville against Dalhousie. 

- UNB will look to break a very rare two game losing streak on Saturday night when they host the visiting UPEI Panthers to the AUC. Game time is scheduled for 7PM.

Saturday, October 27, 2018

Reds Drop First Game Of Season In OT

Aaron Berisha’s second goal of the game - 3:34 into overtime - lifted the visiting Saint Mary’s Huskies to a 2-1 win tonight at the AUC, handing the University of New Brunswick Reds their first loss of the season.

Tyler Boland (Clapperton, Anderson) scored the lone UNB game, answering Berisha’s first of the game (on the power play 8:26 into the contest) at 15:51 of the 1st period to knot the game.

UNB out-shot SMU 40-25 on the night.

This is UNB’s first home loss against a team other than St. FX in almost three years (3-2 in a shootout against Acadia on October 30th, 2015).

The Reds are back at it with a rare Tuesday night game when they travel to Moncton this week for a game with the Aigles Bleus. Game time is 7PM.




UN"B" Offense Gets Healthy In Rout

The #1 nationally ranked University of New Brunswick Reds' talent and depth were on full display tonight in an impressive 7-0 dismantling of the visiting Acadia Axemen at the AUC. Scoring for the Reds were Boucher, Boland (2), Brace, Bennett (2), and Boudens. UNB is now 7-0-0 on the season while the Axemen drop their 3rd straight to fall to 2-5-0.

The Reds were all over the Axemen from the get go, pinning the visitors in their own end for the first couple of minutes of the game. A Christopher Clapperton offensive zone penalty briefly slowed the onslaught, but UNB killed it off without issue and when they got a power play chance of their own mid-way through the period Matthew Boucher (Rassell, Anderson) opened the scoring by whacking the puck into a wide open left side of the net after it appeared goaltender Logan Flodell momentarily lost track of it. The power play struck again 4:12 later when Tyler Boland (Bennett, LeBlanc) found an opening on the far side with a low wrist shot from the face-off circle. A dominating opening 20 minutes ended with UNB up 2-0 and holding a 16-4 advantage on the shot clock.

The 2nd period was Acadia's best of the game - but that isn't saying much on this night as they still surrendered two goals and were out-shot 15-8. At 5:39, seconds after an Axemen penalty was killed off, Cameron Brace (Rassell, Boucher) took what looked to be a harmless shot after loads of offensive zone pressure that got through Flodell to make it 3-0. UNB extended the lead to four at 16:24 with yet another power play goal. This time it was Kris Bennett (Clapperton, Boland) pouncing on a rebound right in front of the net and banging it home.

You probably could have forgiven the Reds if they just put it in cruise control and played out the final 20 minutes without much intensity. Unfortunately for the Axemen, this did not happen. UNB out-shot Acadia 17-1 in the period and added goals from Boland (Gazzola, Clapperton) at 3:32 which chased Flodell from the net as he was replaced with Dawson Carty, Bennett (Gazzola, Boland) on the power play at 10:44, and Matt Boudens (McEwan, Gazzola) at 13:43.

- Shots in the game were 48-13 for UNB.

- Randy Gazzola (3 assists) made a successful return to the line-up after missing the first 6 games of the regular season with an injury. James McEwan also drew into the line-up for the first time this season and contributed his first career AUS point. Defenceman Marcus McIvor was serving the first game of a two game suspension for a hit on SMU forward Anthony Repaci last Saturday. Forwards Alexandre Goulet and Patrick Watling were the scratches tonight.

- Rylan Parenteau made a couple of nice glove saves but otherwise was not tested much in picking up his first shut-out of the season. He is now 4-0-0 on the season with 2.04 GAA and .908 save percentage.

- UNB had a big night on the power play, going 4 for 7. They also had a big night on the power play, killing off all 6 shorthanded situations. The last time they connected 4 times on the power play was in a 5-1 victory over Dalhousie on Januray 7th, 2017.

- The Reds won 41 out of 68 face-offs. Mark Simpson was 16 out of 24 and Samuel Dove-McFalls was 9 out of 12.

- Boland (4 points) was named the player of the game. Gazzola and Bennett were the other two stars.

- Attendance was 2253.

- This is UNB's biggest shutout victory since a 9-0 whitewash of Moncton October 7th, 2016.

- The last time UNB beat Acadia by such a lopsided margin was January 10th, 1975 (10-0).

- To say that the AUC has not been kind to the Axemen in recent years would be a massive understatement. UNB is now 30-0-3 in their last 33 games overall on home ice against Acadia. Their last regulation time loss came in game 3 of the 2006 AUS Final.

- With the Ottawa Gee Gees 4-3 overtime loss to the Brock Badgers tonight UNB is the last remaining unbeaten team in the country.

- Elsewhere around the league tonight, Saint Mary's got back in the win column with a 6-1 road victory over UPEI. In Antigonish, St. FX erased a two goal 3rd period deficit to get past Moncton 5-4 in a shootout.

- The Reds will look to keep the momentum going tomorrow night when they host the Saint Mary's Huskies. Game time is 7PM at the AUC.

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

U Sports Top Ten (#4): Reds Unanimously #1

The weekly U Sport's men's hockey ranking have been released and once again the University of New Brunswick Reds are the top ranked team in the country, but for the first time this season they take the honour unanimously. 

The Reds - who scored road wins over Acadia and Saint Mary's this past weekend to improve to 6-0-0 - picked up all 140 media votes and 130 ELO points for a total of 270. The Alberta Golden Bears are back in 2nd after a one week hiatus with 223 points, flipping spots with the Saskatchewan Huskies (221 points). The Ottawa Gee Gees - the only remaining unbeaten team in the country after UNB - received 171 points to earn their highest ranking since the 2003/2004 season while the Saint Mary's Huskies (143) dropped a spot to 5th after losing their first two games of the season.

The rest of the top ten is made up of the Queen's Gaels (118), Brock Badgers (79), Ryerson Rams (58), Guelph Gryphons (52), and Calgary Dinos (38).

Honourable mention went to the Concordia Stingers (33), St. FX X-Men (32), McGill Redmen (29 points, ending a streak of 37 appearances in the top ten), UBC Thunderbirds (17), and UPEI Panthers (1).

UNB is back on home ice this weekend for a pair of big games. On Friday night they welcome the Acadia Axemen and then the Saint Mary's Huskies are in town on Saturday evening for a top-5 showdown. Game time for both contests is 7PM.



Sunday, October 21, 2018

Murphy Sends Reds Into 1st

For the second straight night the University of New Brunswick Reds came out on the right side of a tightly contested game against a tough opponent. Defenceman Matt Murphy scored 30 seconds into overtime to give the visiting Reds a 3-2 victory over the Saint Mary's Huskies, which moves them to 6-0-0 on the season and into sole possession of 1st place with a game in hand. The Huskies are now 5-1-1.

The pace was great from the beginning in this one as both teams went back and forth with minimal whistles in the opening minutes. The Reds dented the scoreboard first at 15:28 while on the power play. Cameron Brace fed Joe Gatenby at the point and his ensuing shot was deflected in front by Mark Rassell for his 3rd goal of the season. That would prove to be the only goal of the period as UNB out-shot Saint Mary's 11-7.

The Reds carried the momentum over into the 2nd period and started to slowly take over the play, but this was halted abruptly at 13:18 when Bronson Beaton threw a nice saucer pass from the half boards to Hunter Garlent at the far side of the net. The always dangerous Garlent didn't miss, re-directing the pass into the corner for a power play goal to tie the game. UNB got the goal back less than four minutes later with yet another power play goal. With the teams skating 4-on-4, Kris Bennett forced a turnover at the Huskies blue line and fed it to Matthew Boucher at the top of the face-off circle, who whipped a wicked one-timer into the top left corner just seconds after the Reds penalty expired. Boucher's first career AUS goal gave UNB a 2-1 lead after 40 minutes. Shots in the period were 13-5 for UNB.

The Reds got the lone power play of the 3rd period in the opening five minutes, but were unsuccessful in extending their lead. The Huskies then pushed hard for the tying goal and, after being held off the scoreboard for most of the period, finally broke through at 16:01. After an offensive zone face-off win, Huskies good-looking rookie defenceman (and AUS leading scorer) Nick Welsh got the puck, made a nice to-drag to get around a defender, and beat Alex Dubeau with a wrist shot. The two teams played out the final four minutes without any more scoring and headed to overtime. Shots in the period heavily favoured SMU 16-6.

It didn't take long for the game to be decided in the extra session. Each team only had one shot on goal but UNB made theirs count. After a face-off win in their own zone Matt Murphy found Mark Simpson with a pass as the centre was skating through the neutral zone. Simpson gained the Huskies zone before dropping the puck back to Murphy, who proceeded to skate in and beat Eric Brassard between the legs with a shot from the hash marks to give the Reds a big two points.

- Alexandre Goulet replaced Patrick Watling in the line-up. Once again, Randy Gazzola and James McEwan were out.

- Shots in the game were 31-29 for UNB.

- Alex Dubeau improved to 3-0-0 on the season with a 1.93 GAA and 0.924 save percentage.

- It was a strong weekend overall for the goaltending as Dubeau and Rylan Parenteau combined for 0.949 save percentage in the two games.

- UNB was 2 for 5 on the power play. Saint Mary's, who entered the game with a power play that operated at over 41%, went 1 for 6.

- Attendance was 450.

- Matt Murphy was named the player of the game after scoring his second career OT goal. He also provided the game winning goal in a 3-2 win in Acadia last December 2nd.

- For the first time in three years UNB swept a road weekend against Acadia and Saint Mary's. They had dropped at least one of the games in each of the last five weekends playing those two.

- UNB is now 5-3-2 in their last 10 regular season games on the road against SMU. They have out-scored the Huskies 34-33 in those games.

- This is the first time since the 2013/2014 season UNB has started 6-0-0.

- The 4-0-0 University of Ottawa Gee Gees are the only other unbeaten team in the country.

- This is already UNB's 7th one goal game of the season (out of 11 total games). They are 6-1-0 in those games so far. By comparison, they didn't play their 7th one goal game of the season last year until their 21st game of the season.

- More evidence of this season being tighter than ever? A night after all three games were decided by one goal, St. FX defeated Dalhousie 2-1 in Antigonish and UPEI needed an empty net goal to salt away a 5-3 road win over Acadia.

- UNB is back at the AUC next weekend for rematches against this weekend's opponents. They face Acadia on Friday night and Saint Mary's on Saturday night. Puck drop for both games is 7PM.

Friday, October 19, 2018

Reds Notch Big Road Win

The #1 nationally ranked University of New Brunswick Reds passed their biggest test of the early season as they went into Wolfville this evening and escaped with a nail biting 2-1 victory over the Acadia Axemen. UNB moves to 5-0-0 on the season and are now the lone unbeaten team in the conference. Acadia is now 2-3-0.

After a scoreless first period in which Acadia held a 12-6 shot advantage it was the visitors getting on the board first by way of a shorthanded goal 6:14 into the 2nd period. Moments after the Axemen missed on a good chance at one end, Noah Carroll fired the puck up the ice to Matt Boudens who took it hard to the net. While the initial attempt was unsuccessful, the puck sat in the crease where Samuel Dove-McFalls pounced to push it in for the 1-0 lead. The Axemen struck back 5:33 later on a fortunate bounce to tie the game. Ryan Foss entered the offensive zone and took a hard shot that missed the net, but the puck bounced hard off the end boards to Rodney Southam at the side of the net who promptly stuffed it past Rylan Parenteau. The teams would remain tied after a period in which UNB out-shot Acadia 13-11.

The Reds entered the 3rd period with 45 seconds of power play time that carried over from the 2nd and they wasted little time in taking advantage. Kris Bennett (Clapperton, LeBlanc) streaked down the right side and beat Logan Flodell with a short side shot that went under Flodell's blocker to restore the lead only 17 seconds into the period. After the goal UNB started to clamp down defensively, not allowing the Axemen to do anything once they got the puck into the offensive zone. This changed midway through the period when Acadia had back to back glorious chances to tie the game. The first chance came when Kyle Farrell went in all alone and had his shot trickle through Parenteau only to have Patrick Watling clear the puck off the goal line. Moments later Parenteau read a nice cross-ice pass through the slot, going right to left to make a beautiful glove save. The Axemen kept pushing and received a power play with five minutes remaining, but the Reds penalty killing was up to the task. They then pulled Flodell in the final minutes and, despite spending most of it in UNB's zone, were unable to find the equalizer as the Reds hung on for a big two points. Shots in the period were 8-7 for UNB.

- Cameron Brace was back in the line-up, replacing Alexandre Goulet. Randy Gazzola and James McEwan were both out once again.

- UNB was out-shot for the first time this season (30-27).

- Both teams received three power play opportunities in the contest with UNB converting once.

- Parenteau and Flodell were both exceptional in their respective nets, stopping a combined 54 out of 57 shots.

- Parenteau, Southam, and Bennett were named the game's three stars.

- The Axemen won 38 out of 64 face-offs although Mark Simpson still managed to win 19 out of his 33 chances.

- Attendance was 1877.

- UNB improves to 7-6-5 in Wolfville since the beginning of the 2010-2011 season.

- After losing 9 consecutive "pre-Christmas" games in Wolfville (4 in overtime), UNB has now won their last two. Matt Murphy's overtime goal gave them a 3-2 win in the teams final game of the first half last season to break what had been a lengthy streak.

- It was a night of tight games in the AUS. Moncton scored in the final minutes to send their game against St. FX to overtime, but it was rookie Adam Holwell scoring for the X-Men to give them a 2-1 road win. In Halifax, UPEI held off Saint Mary's 3-2 to hand the Huskies their first loss of the season.

- The 5-0-0 Reds will look to keep their winning ways going tomorrow night as they travel to Halifax to face the 5-1-0 Saint Mary's Huskies in what is arguably the marquee U Sports match-up of the night. Game time is 7PM and like usual the game can be viewed at www.AUStv.ca.

Thursday, October 18, 2018

U Sports Top Ten (#3): Reds On Top For Another Week

For a 3rd consecutive week the University of New Brunswick Reds are the top ranked men's hockey in the country, according to the latest top ten rankings released Tuesday.

UNB, who are 4-0-0 on the young season, picked up nine out of a possible fifteen first place votes and 143 points total from the media to go along with 140 ELO points for a combined total of 283 points. That total was enough to remain ahead of new #2 Saskatchewan (230 points), Alberta (one first place votes, 224 points), and Saint Mary's (five first place votes, 202 points).

Rounding out the top ten are Queen's (152), Ottawa (128), UBC (ranked for only the 2nd time in three years with 94 points), McGill (93), Ryerson (71), and Brock (ranked for only the 5th time in nine seasons with 45 points).

Another nine teams received honourable mention including St. FX (20 points), Acadia (12), and Moncton (3).

Simpson Named Athlete Of The Week

Forward Mark Simpson is the latest recipient of the UNB Reds/Papa John's male Athlete of the Week the school announced earlier this week.

Simpson played a pivotal role in UNB's two victories last weekend. On Friday night he scored a goal and won 23 out of 35 face-offs in a 5-1 win over Moncton. He followed up that performance with a pair of goals in UNB's 6-3 win at UPEI the next night.

The 3rd year alternate captain is off to a blistering start to his season. He now has a league-leading five goals - to go along with two assists - in four games played. His seven points rank 4th in the conference.

He will look to continue his solid play this weekend when UNB is on the road to face the Acadia Axemen on Friday night and the Saint Mary's Huskies on Saturday.

Saturday, October 13, 2018

UNB Blitz Panthers Early, Roll To Win

The visiting University of New Brunswick Reds scored 21 seconds into the game and then added four more goals in the opening period, cruising to a 6-3 win over the UPEI Panthers tonight at the MacLauchlan Arena in Charlottetown. UNB improves to 4-0-0 on the young season while the Panthers slip to 1-3-0.

Shortly after the opening face-off the Reds broke in on a 2-on-1 and executed it to perfection with Matthew Boucher feeding Mark Simpson for a one-timer that beat Matthew Mancina, who was seeing his first action of the season in the Panthers goal. Kris Bennett also factored into the goal by picking up the secondary assist. It only took 160 seconds for UNB to make it 2-0 when Patrick Watling (Boudens, Bennett) came out from behind the net and backhanded the puck in between the post and Mancina's arm. The Reds added their third of the night at 11:36 when Christopher Clapperton got the puck to Tyler Boland who then made a nice pass across the slot to a pinching Matt Murphy who had a wide open net to deposit the puck into. The onslaught continued just under five minutes later with two more strikes. At 16:25 Boland took a hit in the offensive zone to make a play on the puck and get it over to Clapperton whose weak shot along the ice beat Mancina. Stephen Anderson was also credited with an assist on the goal, which ended Mancina's night pre-maturely. Matt Murphy (Boudens, Watling) then greeted newly summoned netminder Simon Hofley with a shot off the post and in just 11 seconds later, his second of the night making it 5-0 less than 17 minutes into the contest. The Panthers were able to get one back before the end of the period when a long Doug Blaisdell shot eluded Alex Dubeau a couple of minutes later. Despite the score, shots in the period were 15-12 for UNB.

Much like the opening period, Mark Simpson (Boland, LeBlanc) found the back of the net early in the 2nd period, sweeping in a rebound for a power play goal 54 seconds into the stanza to make it 6-1. Kameron Kielly got the one back with a power play goal of his own at 17:41 and the two teams would head to the intermission with UNB holding a 6-2 lead. Shots in the period were 14-7 for the Reds.

The Panthers had their best period of the night in the 3rd, out-shooting UNB 9-8 and scoring the only goal on a Sam Aulie marker at 11:53. Unfortunately, it was much too little much too late for the Panthers as the Reds wrapped up a convincing 6-3 victory.

- UNB went with the same line-up as last night with Cameron Brace, Randy Gazzola, and James McEwan all remaining out.

- Shots in the game were 37-28 for UNB.

- Both teams went 1 for 3 with the man advantage.

- Attendance was 578.

- UNB won 47 out of 90 face-offs with Patrick Watling (10 out of 17) finding the most success.

- Alex Dubeau made his first start of the season. His only other action thus far came two weeks ago when he came on in relief of Rylan Parenteau to pick up the win against Moncton.

- Olivier LeBlanc was a game-high +4.

- Mark Simpson now has an AUS-leading 5 goals on the season.

- The only other game tonight saw the Saint Mary's Huskies break open a close game with four 3rd period goals in an 8-3 victory over Dalhousie.

- Meanwhile, 1611 people witnessed history at the AUC tonight as the UNB Reds women's hockey team made their return to AUS and U Sports action. In what appeared to be a very evenly matched game against Mount Allison - shots were 34 apiece - the Mounties eked out a 2-1 overtime win.

- UNB is back on the road next weekend for their two biggest tests of the season so far. On Friday night they are in Wolfville to face the 2-2-0 Acadia Axemen and on Saturday night they travel to Halifax for a date with the 5-0-0 Saint Mary's Huskies. Both games are scheduled for a 7PM start and can be seen at www.AUStv.ca.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Reds Skate Past Moncton

The #1 ranked University of New Brunswick Reds played their most complete game of the season tonight, taking down the Universite de Moncton Aigles Bleus 5-1 at the AUC in a game marred by a rash of penalties. UNB moves to 3-0-0 on the regular season while Moncton falls to 2-3-0 after their second straight setback.

After a fairly slow start in terms of shots on goal - only three apiece halfway through the opening period - things picked up in the latter half of the stanza. UNB got on the board on a bit of a controversial goal at 14:46 when Alexandre Goulet (Murphy, Parenteau) took a long pass coming down the right side, got a step on the defenceman, but was then upended into goaltender Alexi Thibaudeau while driving towards the net. The puck crossed the line during the pile up and it was ruled a good goal despite the interference to give the Reds a 1-0 advantage. They doubled their lead in the final minute of the period after Moncton failed multiple times to clear the puck out of their own zone. It eventually landed on the stick of Samuel Dove-McFalls (Boudens, Murphy) in the slot and he snapped it into the left corner for his first career AUS goal at 19:35. Shots in the period were 11-8 for UNB.

The Reds played arguably their best stretch of hockey of the season in the opening minutes of the 2nd period as they hemmed the Aigles Bleus into their own end for multiple shifts at a time. They were rewarded at 2:32 when Mark Rassell (Pomerleau, Boucher) slid the puck along the ice and just out of reach of Thibaudeau into the corner for a 3-0 lead. Rassell's first career AUS goal was the only one of the frame as UNB out-shot Moncton 16-8.

UNB put the game away with a pair of power play goals in the 3rd period sandwiched around Moncton's lone marker of the night. At 1:50 Mark Simpson (Bennett, Clapperton) banged a loose puck in from the side of the cage to push the lead to four goals. After Edouard Michaud got Moncton on the board just after a power play expired at 6:35 Rassell (Goulet, Watling) rounded out the scoring by netting his second of the night at 8:20 when his attempted pass from behind the net banked off something in front and into the net. Shots favoured UNB in the period 14-6.

- Patrick Watling saw his first regular season action of the season, replacing Cameron Brace in the line-up. Randy Gazzola and James McEwan remained sidelined.

- Shots in the game were 41-22 for UNB.

- As mentioned earlier, there were a lot of penalties in the game. The two teams combined for 78 minutes on 27 infractions. UNB was 2 for 10 on the power play and Moncton was 0 for 5.

- Rylan Parenteau was solid in net, making 21 stops on 22 shots although not many were of the larcenous variety.

- UNB dominated the face-off circle, winning 49 out of 75 draws. Mark Simpson won 23 on a ridiculous 35 attempts. Dove-McFalls won 10 out of 15.

- Attendance was 2435.

- Rassell was named the player of the game with Matthew Boucher, and Parenteau the other two stars.

- The Reds introduced their sharp new retro jersey for the game. The jersey features the old UNB Red Devils logo on the front with the new Reds logo on one shoulder and the new Reds stylized 'R' on the other shoulder.

- This was UNB's 14th straight win over Moncton at home as well as overall. Moncton hasn't won at the AUC since a 5-2 win on October 13th, 2012.

- UNB has started the year 3-0-0 for the 5th time in 6 seasons.

- In other games around the conference tonight, the St. FX X-Men fell to 1-2-2 with a 4-3 loss in Halifax to the 4-0-0 Saint Mary's Huskies and the Acadia Axemen doubled Dalhousie 6-3 in Wolfville.

- UNB hits the road tomorrow night for a match-up with the UPEI Panthers in Charlottetown. Game time is 7PM and can be viewed at www.AUStv.ca.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

U Sports Top Ten (#2): UNB Maintain Top Spot

Despite getting shellacked 8-1 in their lone game last week - albeit an exhibition game against the NCAA's Boston College Eagles - the University of New Brunswick Reds remain the number one ranked team in the country according to the latest rankings, released on Tuesday.

UNB, 2-0-0 in conference play, garnered a combined total of 282 points (142 media + 140 ELO) to edge Alberta (257) for the number one spot. The rest of the top ten includes Saskatchewan (197), Saint Mary's (193), McGill (183), Queen's (108), Guelph (71), Ryerson (51), Ottawa (47), and Concordia (42).

Moncton (30), Acadia (19), St. FX (11), and UPEI (2) were among the thirteen teams that earned honourable mention by virtue of accumulating points in at least one of the rating methods.

The Reds are back at the AUC tomorrow night, where they will unveil their brand new retro jersey against the Universite de Moncton Aigles Bleus. Game time is 7PM.

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Eagles Score Early, Often In Rout

Things did not go well for UNB tonight in Boston. The Boston College Eagles scored 18 seconds into the game, added another a minute later, and rolled to a dominating 8-1 win over the University of New Brunswick Reds.

Once again, updates from the UNB Twitter account were severely lacking so we had to follow via other sources. All we know is that BC led 4-0 after a period and 6-1 after two with Christopher Clapperton (Boland, Gatenby) getting the loan goal, on the power play, for UNB. Rylan Parenteau started the game with Alex Dubeau coming in after the two early goals. Shots in the game actually favoured UNB 29-24.

In what has become a bit of a disconcerting early trend, UNB fell behind by multiple goals for the 4th time in 7 games so far this season. The absence of defenceman Randy Gazzola and his steady presence on the blue line is undoubtedly being felt as the defence and goaltending have been shaky at times in the early going.

UNB will look to rebound from their worst loss since a 10-3 drubbing at the hands of St. Thomas on February 10th, 2006 when they host the Moncton Aigles Bleus Friday night back at the AUC. Game time is 7PM.

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

MacDougall Named Assistant For U Sports All-Star Series

Reds head coach Gardiner MacDougall has been announced as an assistant coach on Mark Howell's (Calgary) staff for the 2018 U Sports Men's Hockey All-Star Series in December in Victoria, BC. Joining MacDougall as an assistant will be Patrick Grandmaitre (Ottawa) and Todd Johnson (Regina).

The event will once again pit the U Sports all-star team playing against a squad made up of Team Canada World Junior Prospects who will be looking to earn a roster spot at the 2019 World Junior Hockey Championship, which will be held in Vancouver and Victoria. For the first time it will be a three game series with games scheduled for Wednesday, December 12th (10 PM AST), Thursday, December 13th (10PM AST), and Friday, December 14th (6PM AST) at the Q Centre in Victoria.

Defenceman Randy Gazzola and forward Stephen Anderson took part in last year's event in St. Catharine's as the U Sports team swept both games for the first time ever. Philippe Maillet and Jordan Murray participated in the 2016 showcase.

The U Sports roster is expected to be announced in November.

U Sports Top Ten (#1): Reds Top Inaugural Poll

U Sports released their first top ten rankings of the season yesterday and UNB has earned the top position in the initial poll.

It appears the rankings this year are going to be based on a combination of two separate metrics. As usual there is the media panel, of which UNB received 132 total points, including six first place votes. They also received 140 points from the ELO Rating System for a total of 272 points. This outpaced the defending University Cup champion Alberta Golden Bears, who earned a total of 245 points from 119 media points (five first votes) + 126 ELO points.

Rounding out the top ten are Saskatchewan (196), McGill (176), Saint Mary's (112 points, including the other three first place votes from the media), Concordia (100), St. FX (90), Guelph (71), Ottawa (56), and Brock (38).

As usual with the first rankings of a new season, a large number of teams received votes but not enough to crack the top ten. The honourable mentions include Ryerson (34), Mount Royal (33), Calgary (24), UBC (23), Moncton (19), Acadia (15), UQTR (15), Queen's (8), Lakehead (6), York (3), and Western (1). 

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Last Second Goal Lifts Reds

Mark Simpson’s second goal of the game came with 6.7 seconds remaining in regulation, capping a 3rd period comeback from a 4-2 deficit and giving the University of New Brunswick Reds a thrilling 5-4 victory tonight in Moncton against the Aigles Bleus.

Once again, the Reds got on the board early in the game when Simpson (Anderson, McIvor) scored his first goal of the contest at 4:21, finding a loose puck in front of the net and flipping it over Alexi Thibaudeau's glove hand. The Aigles Bleus would recover and grab the lead before the end of the period. At 11:02 Moncton came in on a 3-on-1 rush with Rylan Parenteau making the original save, but he wasn't able to hold on to the puck as it dropped out of his glove and Carl Marois was right there to bang it into an open net. Robbie Graham then gave the home side their first lead of the night at 18:29 when he found an opening from a sharp angle at the side of the net. Moncton would take a 2-1 lead into the intermission despite getting out-shot 14-7.

The 2nd period was more of the same as UNB held a 20-7 advantage in shots, yet saw the deficit grow to 4-2. All three goals in the period came within 53 second span. At 4:10 Matt Boudens (Cooper, LeBlanc) tied the game, converting a bouncing puck at the side of the net, however it did not last long with Moncton answering right back with a pair. Just 18 seconds later Marois forced a turnover in the slot and fired a wrist shot into the top right corner for his second of the night to make it 3-2 and then, at 5:03, Vincent Deslauriers received the pass on an odd man rush and put the puck off the far post and in to give the Aigles Bleus a two goal lead. The goal prompted a goaltending change with Alex Dubeau coming in for his first action of the young season. UNB had a chance to cut into the lead minutes later when Moncton took penalties 38 seconds apart, but once again the Reds power play sputtered and the deficit remained two heading into the final period.

To make matters worse, Samuel Dove-McFalls took a roughing penalty as time expired, putting Moncton on the power play to begin the 3rd. UNB successfully killed off the penalty and just shortly afterwards Matthew Boucher's pass from behind the net found Tyler Boland cruising into the slot for a quick snap shot into the top right of the cage. Tristan Pomerleau received credit for the secondary assist on the goal. A Cameron Brace penalty mid-way through the period stalled the momentum briefly - although Dove-McFalls had a shorthanded breakaway - but UNB survived and were able to tie it with just over four minutes remaining. After barely keeping the puck in at the Moncton blue line, Simpson found Boudens all alone in the high slot for a one-timer that he pounded past Thibaudeau. Mark Rassell also picked up an assist on the tying goal. This set the stage for an exciting finish, one that was made possible by an ill-advised icing by the Aigles Bleus with 16.4 seconds remaining. A scramble off of the ensuing offensive zone face-off saw the puck find the stick of an Aigles Bleus player, however his clearing attempt was knocked down by Matt Murphy at the blue line, who then worked it down to Simpson (Boudens, Murphy) in front of the net. The 3rd year centre was able to get just enough on his shot to slide the puck just inside the far post for the game winning goal. Shots in the period were 12-8 for UNB.

- The Reds went with the same line-up as Friday night with Randy Gazzola, Patrick Watling, and James McEwan all scratched.

- Shots in the game were 46-20 for UNB.

- Both teams were 0 for 4 on the power play.

- UNB dominated the face-off circle, winning 49 out of 79 draws. Simpson (17 out of 27) and Dove-McFalls (14 out of 23) did much of the heavy lifting with Boland (9 out of 13) also having a solid night.

- Parenteau surrendered 4 goals on 11 shots in 25:03 before Dubeau came on in relief and stopped all 9 shots directed his way over the final 34:57.

- Moncton was without their starting goalie Etienne Monpetit after he left Wednesday's season-opening win over UPEI with an apparent injury.

- This is UNB's 7th straight win in Moncton and their 13th straight against the Aigles Bleus overall.

- There was only one other AUS game last night and it also featured a big road comeback. Saint Mary's spotted St. FX a 4-1 3rd period lead only to come roaring back for a 5-4 shoot-out victory.

- The Huskies and Reds are the only two teams to win both of their opening week games.

- Next weekend is a bit of an odd one in the conference. Saint Mary's/Dalhousie and St. FX/Moncton play league games on Friday night while the other three teams - UNB, UPEI, Acadia - travel to the US for exhibition games against NCAA foes. The Reds will be in Boston for a match-up versus the Boston College Eagles on Saturday night. Game time is 8PM AST.

Friday, September 28, 2018

Reds Hang On To Post Opening Night Win

The University of New Brunswick Reds won their 8th straight season opener and 30th straight home opener, but not before having to weather a last minute flurry from the UPEI Panthers to eke out a 4-3 victory tonight at the AUC.

The Reds got off to a quick 2-0 lead and looked to be well on their way to cruising to an opening night win. Kris Bennett (Clapperton, Boland) got the first goal of the season 2:15 into the contest after a Clapperton pass from the corner found him all alone in front of the net. Bennett made a nice deke before lifting the puck past rookie goaltender Simon Hofley. Just over a minute later UNB struck again with Cameron Brace (Simpson, Cooper) doing the honours to double the lead and force the visitors into calling a time-out. The move paid immediate dividends. Despite the Reds controlling play and dominating the shot clock the Panthers fought back and got on the board at 5:40 when Cody Payne went in all alone, made a move to get Rylan Parenteau moving side to side, and slipped a backhanded shot along the ice five-hole to cut the deficit to a goal. UPEI was much better in the latter part of the period but there would be no more scoring in the frame. Shots in the period were 13-10 for UNB.

The Reds were able to restore the two goal advantage at the six minute mark. After holding the puck in the offensive zone it was worked down to Stephen Anderson (Boucher, LeBlanc) at the right face-off dot and his snap shot found the top right corner. Once again, the Panthers responded. At 9:53 Kameron Kielly was able to shake Olivier LeBlanc at the UNB blue line and went in on a breakaway, beating Parenteau with a backhanded shot. The visitors then squared the game 3-3 at 17:48 while on the power play when Kielly found Gabe Guertler at the side of the net for the equalizer. Shots favoured UNB 13-8 in the period.

UNB were given a great chance to re-take the lead early in the 3rd period after the Panthers took a pair of penalties within 49 seconds in the period's opening minutes. However, the Reds couldn't convert on the lengthy two man advantage. Another UPEI penalty at 4:49 gave UNB another chance and this time they made it count. With the power play winding down Joe Gatenby (Brace, Boucher) sifted a shot from the blue line through traffic that caught the inside of the post and went in. It was Gatenby's first career AUS goal and would ultimately prove to be the game winner, but not before some last minute drama. With just 1:02 remaining in the game Alexandre Goulet took a slashing penalty which allowed the Panthers to operate a 6-on-4 power play after pulling their goalie. They maintained offensive zone pressure for the majority of the final 62 seconds, but the defence and Parenteau stood tall to preserve the 4-3 win. UNB had an 11-4 shot advantage in the period.

- Randy Gazzola (injured), James McEwan, and Patrick Watling were all out of the line-up for UNB. Alex Dubeau was dressed as the back-up tonight after missing the pre-season due to a minor injury.

- The Reds announced yesterday that 4th year defenceman Marcus McIvor will serve as the team captain this season. Mark Simpson, Matt Boudens, Christopher Clapperton, and Randy Gazzola will serve as the alternates

- Shots in the game were 37-22 for UNB.

- UNB was 1 for 7 on the power play. UPEI was 1 for 5.

- The Reds won 41 out of 74 face-offs. Boland had the best night with 15 wins in 23 chances.

- Gatenby, Guertler, and Brace were named the game's three stars.

- Attendance was 2388.

- This is how UNB lined up, at least at the beginning of the game:

Bennett - Boland - Clapperton
Rassell - Boucher - Anderson
Cooper - Simpson - Brace
Goulet - Dove-McFalls - Boudens

Carroll - McIvor
Gatenby - Pomerleau
LeBlanc - Murphy

Parenteau
Dubeau

- Before the game a moment of silence was held for the victims of the Fredericton shootings on August 10th as well as the for the victims of the Humboldt Broncos bus crash on April 6th. Former Bronco - and current Panther - Nick Shumlanski was also acknowledged and he received the longest ovation of the night.

- In other AUS action tonight, Acadia rebounded from a 5-1 loss to Dalhousie on Wednesday to beat St. FX 2-1 in overtime in Wolfville and Saint Mary's defeated Dalhousie 6-1 in the Huskies home opener.

- Tomorrow night UNB is in Moncton for the Aigles Bleus home opener. Both teams will look to move to 2-0-0 on the young season after Moncton beat UPEI 5-3 in Charlottetown on Wednesday. Game time is 7PM.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

AUS Season Begins Tonight

The 2018-2019 AUS regular season kicks off with a pair of games tonight - Moncton at UPEI and Acadia at Dalhousie - and there are a number of season previews to get you ready for all of the action.

- Bruce Hallihan of the Daily Gleaner (subscription required) is back with his 27th annual AUS Preview, which continues to be the most comprehensive and in-depth preview of all seven teams. As usual, it is an absolute must-read and an indispensable resource for any fan of the league.

- Glenn MacDonald of the The Chronicle Herald looks at the four Nova Scotia-based squads.

- Jason Malloy from The Guardian previews the UPEI Panthers.

- The crew from Acadiaaxemenhockey.com runs down the new-look Axemen.

UNB opens their season at home on Friday night when they welcome the UPEI Panthers to the AUC for a 7PM puck drop. If that alone isn’t enough to get you to the rink, the 50/50 pot for the game will start at $2386 due to an unclaimed prize from a University Cup game.

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Pre-Season Ends With Loss

The Ryerson Rams achieved something that no other OUA team has in over six years - defeat the UNB Reds.

Going off of the little information that we have about the game, the Rams built a 1-0 lead after the 1st period, extended it to 4-1 early in the 3rd period, and hung on for a 4-3 win this afternoon at the Mattamy Athletic Centre in Toronto.

The loss ends a lengthy streak for UNB as their last loss to an OUA team was a 3-2 setback to the Western Mustangs at the 2012 University Cup in Fredericton. The Reds had won 27 straight games against OUA teams before today. 

UNB finishes the pre-season with a 3-1-0 record and will now set their sights on Friday night when they host the UPEI Panthers for their home - and season - opener. Game time is 7PM at the AUC.

Of note, the Washington Capitals announced today that Mark Simpson has been released from his try-out agreement so it appears more reinforcements are on the way in time for the AUS regular season.