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.