Sunday, December 29, 2019

Reds Retain Pete Kelly Cup

Samuel Harvey turned aside all 26 shots he faced and UNB opened up a close game with three 3rd period goals to defeat the visiting Windsor Lancers 4-0 in the 15th annual Pete Kelly Cup this afternoon at the AUC.

- After a scoreless opening period that saw UNB out-shoot the Lancers 17-7, the Reds got on the board with a power play goal 4:35 into the 2nd period. Mark Rassell got the puck to Brady Gilmour, who then found Matthew Boucher with a cross-slot pass at the back door for a tap-in. This would be the only goal through the first 40 minutes as Lancers goalie Jonathan Reinhart showed why he is one of the country's best goalies, making 29 saves in the process.

- UNB was able to add a much-needed insurance goal early in the 3rd period when Rassell (Cooper, Dove-McFalls), with a defender all over him, took a pass from behind the net and somehow beat Reinhart with a shot along the ice.

- The Reds extended their advantage at 10:48. A turnover just outside the Lancers blueline led to a two-on-one break with Tyler Boland finding Stephen Anderson, who finished the play with a nice deke to make it 3-0. Patrick Watling also picked up an assist on the goal.

- The Lancers pulled Reinhart with just under two minutes remaining, but it didn't take long for Matt Murphy (Watling) to dance through the defense and find the empty net. The goal came at 18:25 and capped a successful day for the defending champions. 

- UNB dressed their entire line-up, including newcomers Ben Hawerchuk (wearing #12) and Connor Hall (#77).

- Both additions came as advertised. Hawerchuk showed flashes of his grit and skill while Hall brought a big, physical presence on the back-end.

- Shots in the game ended up 49-26 for the Reds with period totals of 17-7, 14-10, and 18-9.

- UNB went 1 for 5 on the power play. The Lancers came up empty on two chances.

- Samuel Harvey continued his run of strong play and earned the game's first star for his efforts. Rassell and the Lancers Sean Olson were the other two stars of the game.

- Windsor held a slight 37-36 advantage in the face-off department. Samuel Dove-McFalls (12 out of 18) had the most success on the afternoon for the Reds.

- Attendance was 2318.

- UNB has now captured the last 14 Pete Kelly Cups.

- The Reds finish their 2019-2020 exhibition schedule with a 3-1 record. They also had another game (versus York) cancelled after a period of play due to ice issues.

- Since losing to UQTR on home ice at the 2003 University Cup, UNB is 39-1-0 against OUA teams at the AUC. The lone loss was a 3-2 setback to Western at the 2012 University Cup.

- They have won 38 straight exhibition games against OUA competition on home ice, dating back to an 11-2 loss to UQTR in 1995.

- The regular season resumes on Friday night when UNB travels to Nova Scotia. They face Dalhousie on Friday night and then St. FX the next evening. Game time is 7PM for both contests.
 

Saturday, December 28, 2019

Pete Kelly Cup Preview

The holiday break for the University of New Brunswick Reds officially comes to an end tomorrow afternoon when they host the OUA's Windsor Lancers in the 15th annual Pete Kelly Cup. Game time is scheduled for 4PM at the AUC.

- This will be the 7th meeting all-time between the two schools with UNB winning all six previous match-ups, including two at the University Cup (3-2 in overtime in 1998 and 6-2 in 2015). They swept a pair of exhibition games in the fall of 2013 (5-0, 5-4) and as part of the 10th Pete Kelly Cup in January 2015 (6-5, 7-1).

- After dropping the inaugural Pete Kelly Cup in 2005, UNB has won each of the last 13.

- UNB has an all-time record of 25-2-1 at the event. Both losses were to NCAA teams - 1-0 to Providence in 2010-2011 and 4-2 to Boston College in 2008-2009.

- The tournament has been played under a number of different formats over the years. This is the second straight year it will be a one game winner-take-all affair. They defeated the Lethbridge Pronghorns 8-3 last season.

- The Lancers are off to a great start to their season. They currently sit second on the OUA West division with a 12-4-1 record, three points behind the University of Toronto.

- However, despite their record, Windsor has only made one appearance in the top ten rankings this season, placing 10th in the November 26th poll.

- The Lancers rely on their defense to win games. They have only scored 52 goals in 17 games (3.06 goals per game) thus far, but have the best goals against average (2.33) and save percentage (.934) in the OUA. Not surprisingly, their power play has struggled this year (14.3%) while their penalty kill has been strong (85.5%). However, despite their overall success, they have been outshot this season by an average of 35.7 to 33.9 per game.

- Individually, the Lancers are led offensively by Ethan Skinner (25th in the OUA with 17 points in 17 games), rookie Anthony Salinitri (15 in 17), and defenceman Kody Gagnon (14 in 17).

- Goaltender Jonathan Reinhart has arguably been the best in the country thus far this season. He has played in 16 out of their 17 games, amassing an 11-4-0 record with a 2.03 GAA (5th in the country) and 0.942 save percentage (1st in the country).

- Windsor was scheduled to face the Universite de Moncton Aigles Bleus in Edmunston today, but the game was cancelled due to travel issues stemming from yesterday's storm.

Friday, December 27, 2019

Hawerchuk To Join Reds

The University of New Brunswick Reds added another piece to their roster today, announcing the addition of Ben Hawerchuk in time for the second half of the season. The name should sound familiar to hockey fans as Ben's father is hockey Hall of Famer Dale Hawerchuk.

Hawechuck posted 67 goals, 69 assists, and 344 PIM in 290 OHL games over five seasons, all with the Barrie Colts, where he was coached by his father. His best season game last year with 27 goals and 23 assists in 62 contests.

The 5'11, 185 pound product of King City, Ontario began his professional career in the fall. He originally joined a team in the Czech Republic, but made his way back to North America before playing a game to join the ECHL's Brampton Beast. While with the Beast Hawerchuck scored two goals and added an assist in 14 games.

Hawerchuck is expected to be in the lineup on Sunday when the Reds face the Windsor Lancers in the annual Pete Kelly Cup. Game time is 4PM.

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Reds Add Former NHL Draft Pick

The defending University Cup champion University of New Brunswick Reds have bolstered their blueline for the stretch run as it was announced today that defenceman Connor Hall - a 2016 3rd round draft pick of the Pittsburgh Penguins - will join the team ahead of the second half of the season.

Although he has never been a big point producer (3 goals and 20 assists during parts of five OHL seasons, all with the Kitchener Rangers) and has battled shoulder issues throughout his career, which limited him to only 115 regular season games in his junior career, including just four last season, the Cambridge, Ontario native will be a welcome addition as he brings some much-needed size (6'2", 203 pounds) and snarl to the Reds and will be looked upon to provide solid defensive play and penalty killing.

According to his 2016 NHL Draft Profile, Hall "likes to use his size and strength to play a nasty, physical game...he punishes forwards, especially along the boards...he makes life difficult for the opposition" and he "excels as a shutdown defender that is especially strong one-on-one. He maintains good gaps, and has a strong, active stick. He's got an excellent poke check".

The addition of Hall brings the Reds roster to twenty skaters, which still leaves them plenty of flexibility with regards to the 22 skater limit should more opportunities present themselves in the coming weeks.

Fans will get their first chance to see Hall on Sunday, December 29th when the Reds welcome the OUA's Windsor Lancers to the AUC for the 15th annual Pete Kelly Cup. Game time is 4PM.

Friday, December 13, 2019

U Sports, Team Canada Split Series

The U Sports all-stars - coached by Gardiner MacDougall - and Team Canada junior prospects played a two game series on Wednesday and Thursday in Oakville, Ontario and each side emerged with a one goal victory.

On Wednesday afternoon it was Team Canada picking up a 4-3 win, despite being out-shot 27-21 by the U Sports team. Mount Royal's Ryley Lindgren opened the scoring 48 seconds into the contest - with Tristan Pomerleau picking up an assist on the goal - but that would be the only lead of the night for U Sports. Kris Bennett tied the game 2-2 with a power play goal 3:16 into the 2nd and Saint Mary's Huskies forward Stephen Johnson, from Bennett and Tyler Boland, equalized the game at 5:53 of the 3rd period. However, Bowen Bryam responded just under a minute later for Team Canada with what would prove to be the game winning goal. Team Canada hopefuls Hunter Jones and Olivier Rodrigue shared the crease for U Sports. After the 60 minute regulation game the two teams played a five minute 4-on-4 overtime period, which saw Team Canada score the only goal, and then held a five round shootout that U Sports won 2-1.

In the rematch on Thursday it was the U Sports all-stars stifling Team Canada for a 2-1 win in which the shots in the game favoured the university stars 22-12. All of the scoring game in the first 11 minutes of the game with Ryerson Rams forward Matthew Santos connecting for a power play goal from Boland and McGill's Nikolas Brouillard at 6:45 and Alberta's Trevor Cox making it 2-0 at 10:34. Alex Newhook of the Boston College Eagles replied for Team Canada at 11:15 to cut the lead in half, but there would be no scoring over the final 48+ minutes. The two teams switched goalies for the game with Canada's Nico Daws and Joel Hofer playing for U Sports. Once again there was a five minute overtime period - 3-on-3 this time - and shootout held afterwards and the U Sports team swept both.

Overall, it was another strong showing for the U Sports all-stars against some of the best junior players in the world. This event continues to be an outstanding showcase for U Sports hockey and shows just how strong university hockey is in this country.

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Boland Nabs Monthly Honour

Reds forward Tyler Boland has been named the UNB Reds/Valley Graphics male Athlete of the Month for November.

In eight games the 3rd year forward collected six goals - including a dramatic, last minute game winning goal against Acadia - and seven assists, helping the Reds to a 6-2 record.

Coming off of 27 and 38 point seasons, Boland is well on his way to setting a new career high this year. He currently ranks 3rd in the conference with 10 goals and 16 assists in 17 games. He is also 2nd in the league with a +14 rating.

It's been a good couple of days for the Newfoundland native. In addition to being named the athlete of the month, Boland has also been selected to the U Sports all-star team that will face Hockey Canada's National Junior Team prospects in a pair of games next week in Oakville, Ontario.

MacDougall To Coach All-Stars, Including 5 Reds

Reds head coach Gardiner MacDougall will serve as the head coach of the U Sports all-stars when they face Hockey Canada's National Junior Team prospects in a two game series next week in Oakville, Ontario.

Five Reds players will be joining MacDougall with defencemen Tristan Pomerleau and Matt Murphy, and forwards Mark Simpson, Kris Bennett, and Tyler Boland being named to the 22 player roster. This will be Pomerleau and Boland's first appearance at the event.

The Alberta Golden Bears lead the way with six selections while three other AUS players have been invited - Saint Mary's defenceman Nick Welsh and forward Stephen Johnson, and St. FX forward Bryson Cianfrone.

Joining MacDougall on the coaching staff are Brett Gibson (Queen's), Todd Johnson (Regina), and Clarke Singer (Western).

The games are scheduled for 6PM AST on Wednesday, December 11th and 3PM AST Thursday, December 12th.

The U Sports all-stars have gone 5-3-1 in the previous four incarnations of the series, which helps prepare the Canadian team for the IIHF World Junior Championship. This year's tournament will be held in the Czech Republic later this month.

Harvey Named Athlete of the Week

Goaltender Samuel Harvey has been named the UNB Reds/Papa John's Pizza male Athlete of the Week after guiding the Reds to an 8-1 victory over the Saint Mary's Huskies on Saturday night.

The rookie netminder turned aside 14 out of 15 shots to pick up his 7th win of the season.

After a tough AUS debut in which he allowed six goals, the former Memorial Cup champion has been lights out. He currently ranks 3rd in the league in wins, 2nd in winning percentage (0.777), 1st in goals against average (2.00), and 3rd in save percentage (0.902).

Saturday, November 30, 2019

Reds Handle Huskies

The University of New Brunswick Reds were once again up against a team that was missing numerous key players but, unlike last night, they left no doubt this evening as they earned an 8-1 victory over the Saint Mary's Huskies in Halifax.

The Reds raced out to a 3-1 lead after the opening twenty minutes. Samuel Dove-McFalls (Cooper, McIvor) got the scoring started 2:48 into the game when he skated across the blue line and released what looked to be a harmless wrist shot that eluded Xavier Potvin. Brady Gilmour doubled the lead 11:13 after a Joe Gatenby point shot found its way through traffic and to Gilmour, who was all alone in front. The freshman forward made a deke to get the puck around Potvin. The Huskies took just over a minute to get that one back, however. Jacob Friend found Mitchell Balmas on a 2-on-1 break and the rookie sensation beat Samuel Harvey with a shot short side to cut the lead to 2-1. Matthew Boucher (McIvor, Gilmour) restored the two goal cushion at 16:24 when he was camped out in the crease to Potvin's right and was able to get a stick on McIvor's shot, redirecting it into the net. Shots were 9-7 for UNB in the period.

The 2nd period was the Reds best of the night as they added three more goals and held a 15-3 shot advantage. At 7:56 Tyler Boland (Boucher, Watling), who moments earlier hit the far post, got the puck back in a similar spot in the right face-off circle and beat Potvin short side. Gatenby (Boland) then got his second of the season at 14:27 when he drifted a wrist shot in from the blue line to push the lead to 5-1. Kris Bennett (Watling) got UNB's 6th of the night at 18:05 after he circled out of the corner with the puck, skated untouched through the slot, and beat Potvin with a backhander.

The Reds struck for two more goals in the opening half of the 3rd period with Alexandre Goulet (Rassell, Simpson) and Dove-McFalls (Cooper, Murphy, with his second of the night while on the power play, finding the back of the net against Marc Terriault, who had replaced Potvin in the Huskies net to begin the period. Shots in the period were 7-5 for UNB, who played almost the entire final five minutes shorthanded, including being down two men for 116 seconds.

- Noah Carroll was the lone scratch.

- Shots in the game were 31-15 for UNB.

- The Reds were 1 for 5 on the power play. The Huskies were 0 for 6.

- UNB held a slight 42-39 advantage in the face-off circle. Tyler Boland had the best night, winning 12 out of 19 draws.

- Gilmour, Boucher, and Balmas were the game's three stars.

-  Attendance was 684.

- The Huskies were playing without their top defenceman - and the league's second leading scorer - Nick Welsh and another top-4 defenceman in Dylan DiPerna due to suspensions stemming from Friday night's game against Moncton. They were also without #1 goalie Erick Brassard, point per game forward Dawson Theede, and another top pairing defender in Alex Peters due to injury.

- To make matters worse, the Huskies also lost defenceman Jacob Friend for the game late in the 2nd period after Friend was assessed his second 'contact to the head' penalty and 10 minute misconduct of the contest. This resulted in a game misconduct. Friend racked up a healthy 36 minutes in penalties on the evening.

- Samuel Harvey (14 saves) continued his strong play of late, turning in his 6th straight game allowing two goals or fewer. Since surrendering 6 goals in his first start of the year, Harvey has only given up 12 goals in 8 games.

- UNB has outscored the Huskies 17-4 in two games at the Dauphinee Centre this season.

- In other action around the league on the final night of action before the Christmas break, the Moncton Aigles Bleus scored two goals in the final two minutes to force overtime against Acadia, but Owen MacDonald's overtime goal allowed the Axemen to escape with a 4-3 win on home ice. Meanwhile, in Charlottetown the Dalhousie Tigers held on for an important 3-2 victory over the UPEI Panthers.

- UNB enters the holiday break in 2nd place for the first time in a number of years. The Acadia Axemen (14-4-0) lead the pack while the Reds (13-4-0) are two points behind, albeit with a game in hand. The Saint Mary's Huskies (10-8-0) Moncton Aigls Bleus (8-6-4) are tied for 3rd place, both with 20 points. The St. FX X-Men (7-9-2) are in 5th place while the UPEI Panthers (6-8-3) are only a point behind and, along with UNB, have played one fewer game than everyone else. The Dalhousie Tigers (4-12-2) are on the outside of the playoff picture looking in, five points behind the Panthers.

- The next game for UNB will be an exhibition tilt against the OUA's Windsor Lancers in the annual Pete Kelly Cup. It is schedule for 4PM on Sunday, December 29th. 

- While the players now turn their focus to exams, us fans will be following the rumour mill. UNB still has three roster spots open and will no doubt be looking to add reinforcements to bolster their line-up for the second semester.

- The Reds also have another exhibition game available should they choose to use it. They originally had a full complement of six games, but the cancelled pre-season game against Acadia means they now only have five exhibition games on the schedule.

Friday, November 29, 2019

Struggles In Wolfville Continue

The University of New Brunswick Reds suffered their 11th loss in their last 14 pre-Christmas games in Wolfville as the Acadia Axemen held on for a 3-2 win tonight.

UNB, who never led in this one, received goals from Olivier LeBlanc (Anderson, Simpson) to tie the game 1-1 at 14:02 of the 1st period and Matthew Boucher (Goulet, Gilmour), who connected for a power play goal at :12 of the 2nd period to pull the Reds to within 3-2. However, that would be as close as they would get as Logan Flodell (40 saves) out-dueled Rylan Parenteau (24 saves) to send Acadia into 1st place. The Axemen are now 13-4-0 on the season while UNB is 12-4-0.

- Noah Carroll was the only scratch for UNB.

- It was another frustrating missed opportunity for the Reds as the Axemen were playing a man short and were missing their top forward (Stephen Harper), top defenceman (Garrett McFadden), and another top-6 forward in Rodney Southam. Harper also missed the first meeting this year, a 6-4 Axemen victory. 

- UNB went 1 for 4 on the power play. Acadia scored once on three chances.

- The Axemen won 34 out of 65 face-offs.

- The Reds held a 42-27 shot advantage with period totals of 11-9, 19-11, and 12-7.

- Despite holding a slight edge in play, UNB gave up way too many odd-man rushes, including a goal on a shorthanded breakaway that proved to be the game winner. Acadia, for their part, didn't give up any odd-man rushes and did a good job at keeping most of the Reds shots to the outside.

- In other AUS action, Saint Mary's picked up a solid 5-2 home victory over Moncton and UPEI edged St. FX 6-5 in a wild game in Antigonish that featured 85 shots on goal.

- UNB will look to regroup tomorrow night as they face the Saint Mary's Huskies in their final game before the Christmas break. Game time is 7PM.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

U Sports Top Ten (#9): Reds Reclaim Top Spot

Two impressive home victories - coupled with a rare loss by the Alberta Golden Bears - means the University of New Brunswick Reds are once again the top ranked men's hockey team in the country. 

The Reds amassed 1811.66 ELO points in the latest rankings, which were released yesterday afternoon. This was enough for them to overtake Alberta, who had 1773.29 points after they split a weekend series in Manitoba against the Bisons.

Spots 3-5 remain unchanged with the Carleton Ravens (1733.03), Toronto Varsity Blues (1665.72), and Saskatchewan Huskies (1654.09) all holding steady for another week.

It appears the new ELO rating system has led to a lot of volatility from week to week, especially amongst the lower ranked team, and this week was no different with four teams re-entering the rankings. The Mount Royal Cougars (6th with 1619.74 points), Acadia Axemen (7th, 1619.70), Ryerson Rams (8th, 1613.07), and Windsor Lancers (10th, 1602.77) are all back in the rankings while the Calgary Dinos (1606.64) remained in 9th.

Here are the notable games this week:

FRIDAY
#1 UNB at #7 Acadia
#3 Carleton at McGill
#4 Toronto at Brock
#5 Saskatchewan at #6 Mount Royal

SATURDAY
#1 UNB at Saint Mary's
Moncton at #7 Acadia
#5 Saskatchewan at #6 Mount Royal
Guelph at #10 Windsor

Dove-McFalls Takes Weekly Honour

Reds forward Samuel Dove-McFalls has been named the UNB Reds/Papa John's Pizza male Athlete of the Week after a pair of big performances in two convincing home victories this past weekend.

On Friday night Dove-McFalls was named the player of the game in a 10-0 blowout of the Dalhousie Tigers. He scored two goals - including the opening marker that set off the annual Teddy Bear Toss - and won 16 out of 24 face-offs. He added two assists the next night as the Reds easily dispatched St. FX 8-1.

On the season the 2nd year forward has 3 goals and 6 assists in 15 games, while winning over 65% of his face-offs and playing a key role on UNB's top-ranked penalty kill.

Dove-McFalls and the Reds conclude the 1st half of their schedule this weekend with two big road tests. They face the Acadia Axemen on Friday night and then visit Saint Mary's the next night.

Postponed Game Rescheduled

The game against the UPEI Panthers, originally scheduled for November 16th in Charlottetown, but  cancelled due to high winds on the Confederation Bridge, has been rescheduled. It will now be played on Tuesday, January 14th at 7PM.


Saturday, November 23, 2019

X-Men No Match For Big Red Machine

It's hard to imagine a weekend going much better for the University of New Brunswick Reds. A night after thumping Dalhousie 10-0, they completely overmatched the St. FX X-Men. The relentless Reds out-manned, out-worked, and out-skilled their rivals in an 8-1 romp tonight at the AUC. UNB moves to 12-3-0 at the halfway mark of the regular season, keeping pace with the 12-4-0 Acadia Axmen atop the conference.

The best part of the game for the X-Men was the first 44 seconds as that was all it look for Stephen Anderson to get UNB off and running. Alexandre Goulet got the puck in the corner after a Mark Simpson face-off win, circled behind the net, and fed Anderson in front who flipped a backhander past Joseph Raaymakers. Much like last night UNB built an insurmountable 1st period lead, adding two more goals before the horn sounded. At 12:05 Goulet (Boland, LeBlanc) got the puck all alone in the slot for a one-timer that hit the post and went in. The goal came on the back half of a 5-on-3 power play and gave UNB a 2-0 lead. Just 82 seconds later Simpson (Murphy) got the puck just inside the blue line, took a few strides, and put a shot into the top right corner. Just like that the rout was on. The Reds out-shot the X-Men 21-6 in an impressive opening period.

UNB didn't take their foot off the gas in the 2nd period as they out-shot St. FX 21-4 and pumped in four more goals. Patrick Watling's (LeBlanc, Boland) unleashed a seeing-eye shot from the boards near the blue-line that just caught the inside of the far post to make it 4-0 at 3:47 and then he added another - his 7th of the season - 63 seconds later, gaining positioning on the defenceman and re-directing a nice Tyler Boland pass past the out-stretched right leg of Raaymakers. This spelled the end of Raaymakers night after giving up five goals on 30 shots. He was also left out to dry on multiple other occasions as he did his best to keep his team in the game. Blade Mann-Dixon entered the game and he did his part to hold the fort, making a number of big saves. The X-Men had an opportunity to get on the board when Matthew Graham was hauled down on a breakaway, giving him a penalty shot at 10:43. However, Samuel Harvey stood tall in the UNB and blockered Graham's wrist shot away. Things went from bad to worse for St. FX when they Bailey Webster was assessed a delay of game penalty at 9:19. With a 6-0 lead this afforded the coaching staff a chance to give some players who don't usually get power play time a chance with the man advantage and they took advantage when James McEwan (Gagne, Dove-McFalls) leaned into a one-timer in the high slot, beating Mann-Dixon on his glove side at 12:32. The Reds would head into the intermission with a 7-0 lead.

With the game no longer in doubt the Reds appeared to ease off a bit in the 3rd, out-shooting the X-Men 11-4. Although St. FX was able to break Harvey's shut-out bid at 9:41 when Mark Tremaine camped out in front of the net and was able to tip in a long shot, UNB answered with a power play goal at 15:26 to restore their seven goal cushion. Oliver Cooper (Rassell, Dove-McFalls) did some good, hard, dirty work in front of the net and was rewarded when he was able to swipe the puck into a waning net as Mann-Dixon was well out of position. That would cap the scoring in what was an all around dominating performance from the Reds.

- UNB went with the same line-up as last night with Benjamin Gagne playing in place of Noah Carroll.

- Shots in the game were 53-14. UNB out-shot their opposition 111-25 on the weekend, registering 20+ shots on goal in four out of the six periods they played.

 - Samuel Harvey had to make a couple tough saves among the 13 shots he turned aside. He is now 4-1-0 with a 1.21 GAA and 0.933 save percentage in his last five starts.

- As mentioned, both Raaymakers and Mann-Dixon made a number of tough saves as well. Although the score was 8-1, the game wasn't as close as the final score would indicate.

- UNB won 51 out of 87 face-offs. Mark Simpson had a huge night in the dot, winning 21 out of 27 draws.

- The Reds went 3 for 9 on the power play. St. FX was shut out on four opportunities.

- The X-Men were missing a number of regulars, forcing them to play with only 16 skaters.

- Attendance was 2088.

- Anderson’s second two goal game of the weekend earned him player of the game honours.

- Since suffering a heartbreaking 5-4 overtime loss to St. FX in the 2018 University Cup semi-finals, UNB has gone 5-0 against the X-Men at the Aitken Centre. They have out-scored them 35-8 in the process.

- UNB out-scored Dalhousie and St. FX by a combined 18-1 count this weekend. Their +17 goal differential is the most lopsided they have had in consecutive games since 2003/2004 when they beat Moncton 11-1 and then York 9-1.

- UNB entered the weekend having scored 4.38 goals per game (57 goals in 13 games) so far this season, well below last season's average of five goals per game. After this weekend they have now scored 75 goals in 15 games, exactly five per game.

- In other AUS action tonight, Acadia scored three times in the 3rd period to defeat UPEI 3-1 in Wolfville and Moncton continued their recent hot streak, blowing out Dalhousie 7-2 on home ice.

- After six straight home games, the Reds are on the road next weekend to finish up the first half of the season. They are in Wolfville on Friday night for a first place showdown against the Acadia Axemen and then head to Halifax the next evening for a date with the Saint Mary's Huskies. Game time is 7PM for both contests.

- UNB are back on home ice on Sunday, December 29th when they host the OUA's Windsor Lancers at 4PM in the annual Pete Kelly Cup.

Historic Night For MacDougall

Gardiner MacDougall picked up his 400th career regular season victory - and 500th between regular season and postseason play - as the University of New Brunswick Reds thrashed the visiting Dalhousie Tigers 10-0 in the 4th annual Teddy Bear Toss game. With the win UNB (11-3-0) moves back into a 1st place tie with Acadia with a game in hand.

Simply put, this was game was a dominating performance from the defending University Cup champions as UNB struck for four goals in the 1st period to put the game out of reach early. Samuel Dove-McFalls (Rassell, Gagne) opened the scoring at 3:46 when he was the recipient of a nice pass from Mark Rassell and put a wrist shot into the top right corner, triggering a shower of stuffed animals on to the ice. It marks the second straight year Dove-McFalls has scored the Teddy Bear Toss goal. After a brief delay to pick up a record-setting 1443 stuffed animals, the game resumed and the Reds continued their onslaught. At 8:15 Alexandre Goulet (Simpson, LeBlanc) got a step on the defence, splitting two Tigers defenders and beat Reilly Pickard blocker side. It only took 25 seconds for UNB to add another with Tyler Boland (Bennett, Watling) sneaking the puck in short-side from tough angle near the goal line. The Tigers got some life mid-way through the period when Rassell and Bennett took penalties 24 seconds apart. However, not only did they fail to generate anything offensively, they surrendered a shorthanded goal when Rassell (Pomerleau, Parenteau) got the puck in the neutral zone after coming out of the penalty box and went in all alone, making a quick move before snapping the puck in to make it 4-0 at 11:21. The Reds carried the commanding lead into the intermission, out-shooting Dalhousie 22-4 in the period.

UNB increased their lead to 6-0 after two periods. Rassell (Boland, Cooper) added his second of the night at 14:41 of the 2nd period as Tyler Boland's short pass found him at the lip of the crease for a tap-in. Dove-McFalls (Bennett) would score his second of the night at 18:22, receiving a pass from Bennett in tight and jamming it past Pickard. Shots in the period favoured the home side 16-3.

The Reds added four more goals over the final twenty minutes to turn the game into a laugher. Some beautiful passing on the power play resulted in Matthew Boucher (Rassell, Gilmour) getting his 8th of the season at 2:28, some seven seconds into the man advantage. A Stephen Anderson (Goulet, Gagne) breakaway goal 41 seconds would spell the end of the night for a visibly frustrated and upset Pickard, who took out his anger by throwing his stick and mask into the bench and slamming the bench door. Backup goalie Kevin Resop was peppered with 16 shots in his 16:51 of action and gave up the final two goals of the night - a one-timer from the hash marks on the power play from Anderson (Simpson, Goulet) at 9:29 and a wrist shot from the slot by defenceman Matt Murphy (Gilmour) at 14:51. Shots in the period were 20-4 for UNB.

- Noah Carroll was out of the line-up as Benjamin Gagne was back on defence.

- Shots in the game were 58-11 for UNB.

- The Reds went 2 for 5 on the power play. The Tigers were 0 for 7.

- UNB won 54 out of 87 face-offs with Dove-McFalls (16 out of 24), Simpson (15 out of 20), and Boland (13 out of 21) all having strong nights.

- Attendance was 2861.

- Tigers starting goaltender Connor Hicks, who has had some incredible performances against UNB over the last two seasons, was not dressed.

- Only three Reds players did not register a point - Joe Gatenby, Marcus McIvor, and James McEwan.

- Rylan Parenteau was hardly tested at all as he picked up his second shut-out of the season.

- This is tied for the biggest win under Gardiner MacDougall. They also had 10-0 wins over Moncton (2019) and UPEI (2009) as well as 11-1 victories over Moncton (2003) and Nipissing (2014).

- MacDougall is now 400-134-18 in AUS regular season play. He is 500-179-18 in AUS regular season + postseason games.

- It was a good night on the out-of-town scoreboard for UNB. The UPEI Panthers doubled the 3rd place Saint Mary's Huskies 6-3 on home-ice and Moncton blanked St. FX 3-0 at home.

- UNB is back at the AUC Saturday night as they welcome the rival St. FX X-Men to town. Game time is 7PM.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

U Sports Top Ten (#8): Status Quo At Top

The top three spots in the latest men's hockey top ten rankings - Alberta, UNB, and Carleton - stayed the same as the week prior, but all other positions saw some movement.

The Golden Bears (1825.96 ELO points), Reds (1794.80), and Ravens (1726.02) compose the top three teams in the nation for a fifth straight week.

The Toronto Varsity Blues continued their remarkable ascent, moving up to 4th with 1650.90 points, placing them just ahead of the Saskacthewan Huskies (1644.03).

The bottom half of the top ten is made up of Ottawa (1606.74) - down two spots to 6th, Guelph (1597.44), Saint Mary's (1590.28) - down one spot to 8th, Calgary (1589.29), and McGill (1585.04). The Gryphons, Dinos, and McGill all return to the rankings after a one week absence.

The Reds are at the AUC for two games this weekend. On Friday night they host Dalhousie in the always-anticipated annual Teddy Bear Toss game. They welcome rival St. FX the following evening. Both games are set for a 7PM start.

Here are the other notable games this week:

WEDNESDAY
Acadia defeated #8 Saint Mary's 5-2

THURSDAY
Ryerson at #7 Guelph

SATURDAY
St. FX at #2 UNB

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Game Postponed

The game tonight between UNB and UPEI in Charlottetown has been cancelled due to high winds on the Confederation Bridge.

A make-up date will be announced at a later time.

Friday, November 15, 2019

Reds Roll To Win

The University of New Brunswick Reds scored three 1st period goals and cruised to a 4-1 victory over the Moncton Aigles Bleus tonight at the AUC. UNB improves to 10-3-0 on the season to keep pace with the Acadia Axemen atop the standings.

The Reds received goals in the opening twenty minutes from Patrick Watling (Boland, Pomerleau) at 1:06, Stephen Anderson (Boland, Bennett) on the power play at 14:58, and Samuel Dove-McFalls (Cooper) at 16:25. Matt Murphy (Harvey) added another 9:45 into the 2nd period to make it 4-0.

A Gabriel Vanier power play goal at 17:42 of the middle frame broke Samuel Harvey’s shutout bid.

- Matthew Boucher was out of the lineup while Benjamin Gagne drew in.

- UNB out-shot Moncton 40-23 on the evening.

- The Reds went 1 for 6 on the power play while Moncton went 1 for 5.

- UNB held a 41-20 advantage in the face-off circle.

- Attendance was 3374 on Northside/Francophone Elementary School Night.

- The Reds are on the road tomorrow night to face UPEI.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

U Sports Top Ten (#7): Reds 2nd After Shake Up

As expected, after a week which saw eight top ten teams drop at least one game the latest men's hockey top ten rankings have a drastically different look.

The Alberta Golden Bears, who were the only team to go undefeated last week, moved back into the top spot with 1821.13 ELO points. This moved them past UNB and their 1780.13 points. 

The Carleton Ravens were the only team to hold steady as they come in 3rd with 1696.22 points. The Ottawa Gee Gees (1618.05) move from outside of the rankings to 4th and the Saskatchewan Huskies (1617.07) are up a spot despite enjoying a bye week. 

The big story this week are the Toronto Varsity Blues (1614.50), who are ranked for the first time since the 2012/2013 season. Their 6th place ranking is their highest since 1992/1993. 

Rounding out the top ten are the Saint Mary's Huskies (1604.96), who are up a spot after their win over UNB, Brock Badgers (1595.45), Ryerson Rams (1594.93), and Acadia Axemen (1593.79), dropping six spots after losses to Moncton and UNB last weekend. 

Here are the notable games this week:

WEDNESDAY
#7 Saint Mary's at St. FX

FRIDAY
#10 Acadia at St. FX
#4 Ottawa at #3 Carleton
Guelph at #8 Brock

Boland Is Athlete Of The Week

Reds 3rd year forward Tyler Boland has been named the UNB Reds/Papa John's Pizza male athlete of the week after his performance in a pair of games last weekend.

On Friday night Boland scored UNB's lone goal in a 3-1 setback to the Saint Mary's Huskies. The next afternoon, in a first place showdown against the Acadia Axemen, he scored twice - including the game winning goal with 47 seconds remaining - to give UNB a crucial 4-3 win.

The Newfoundland native is currently tied for 4th in AUS scoring with 17 points (8 goals, 9 assists) in 12 games. His + 12 rating is 2nd in the conference.

Boland and his teammates are on home ice tomorrow night to face the Moncton Aigles Bleus. They travel to the island to face the UPEI Panthers Saturday night.

Saturday, November 9, 2019

Boland's Late Heroics Lifts Reds

The 1st place Acadia Axemen erased a two goal 3rd period deficit and looked on their way to sending their game against the University of New Brunswick Reds to overtime, but Tyler Boland's second goal of the game with 47 seconds remaining gave the home team a thrilling 4-3 win this afternoon at the AUC. The win pulls UNB into a tie atop the conference with the Axemen as both teams have identical 9-3-0 records.

- After a disappointing performance the night before against Saint Mary's, today was a much more inspiring effort from UNB, although still probably not up to their high standards.

- The Reds were rewarded for their hot start when the 4th line of Brady Gilmour, Oliver Cooper, and James McEwan combined for the game's first goal at 8:29. The puck came out front to McEwan and, after his first attempt was stopped by Axemen goaltender Logan Flodell, he stuck with the play and batted in the rebound.

- The Axemen got the equalizer on the power play at 14:53. Jordy Stallard sent a pass from the blueline to Cristiano Digiacinto, who was all alone at the side of the net for an easy re-direction past Rylan Parenteau.

- It only took 56 seconds for UNB the respond. Kris Bennett threw the puck on net from the point, which Flodell kicked out, but Boland scooped up the rebound just outside the crease and was able to get the puck just past Flodell's out-stretched left leg. Matt Murphy also picked up an assist on the marker.

- The Reds added to their lead at 15:37 of the 2nd period as Joe Gatenby patiently waited before throwing a puck from the point into traffic in front of the net. Mark Simpson was able to get a piece of it and deposit it into the net for a 3-1 lead. Tristan Pomerleau was credited with the secondary assist on the insurance goal.

- Acadia got some life early in the 3rd period as Alexandre Goulet was sent off for elbowing 11 seconds into the period and they took advantage. The Reds penalty kill, which struggled all weekend, left Maurizio Colella all alone in the right face-off circle and he blasted a slap shot that beat Parenteau clean glove side.

- The Reds power play had back to back power play opportunities at 7:51 and 9:59 that came up empty, and it looked like they would get another crack with the man advantage at 11:49 when Digiacinto was whistled for boarding. However, the penalty was wiped out when Noah Carroll gave Digiacinto a nudge on his way to the penalty box that dropped the Axemen forward like a bag of bricks. Unfortunately, the referee bought the impressive acting job and sent Carroll off as well for unsportsmanlike conduct.

- After a few minutes of tense play the game began to settle down again and Acadia was able to tie it up at 16:30 after a nice end to end rush by defenceman Garrett McFadden, who rushed down the right side, drove towards the goal, and slid the puck past Parenteau.

- This set the stage for Boland. With under a minute to play two Reds brought the puck up the ice and into the Axemen zone. Boland (Bennett, Murphy) got the puck at the right face-off dot and his wrist shot found the inside of the far post to give UNB the lead with 47 seconds remaining. The Reds forecheck did the rest as they kept the puck hemmed in the Axemen zone for the rest of the game, not giving Flodell a chance to leave for the extra attacker. 

- Shots in the game were 35-21 for UNB. Period totals were 13-6, 13-5, and 9-10.

- Benjamin Gagne was the only scratch.

- Acadia went 2 for 5 on the power play. UNB was 0 for 4 on the afternoon - and 0 for 9 on the weekend.

- The Reds were definitely much more engaged today as they forced Flodell into making a number of big saves - including a point blank glove save off Bennett after a cross-ice pass - and were able to create a lot more chaos and chances around the net. For his part, Rylan Parenteau was solid as well with his best stop coming on a desperation stick save on a shot that looked like a sure game-tying goal midway through the contest.

- A hard hit on Bennett in the 2nd period caused the UNB bench - and head coach Gardiner MacDougall in particular - to give the officials an ear full. It was about as animated as you will ever see the Reds bench boss as he gave the referees his opinion on the play. After going down the tunnel for a few moments Bennett was back on the ice and didn't look the worse for wear. 

- UNB won 40 out of 69 face-offs. Samuel Dove-McFalls (15 out of 26), Tyler Boland (10 out of 18), and Mark Simpson (9 out of 15) all had good showings in the face-off circle.

- Tyler Boland was the game's first star followed by Bennett and McFadden.

- Attendance was 2174, a respectable showing for the uncommon start time.

- Acadia's struggles at the AUC continue. They are now 0-33-3 against UNB at the Aitken Centre since the beginning of the 2006-2007 season. However, they have won a game in regulation at the AUC since then - a 4-1 win over Alberta at the 2017 University Cup.

- The other two AUS games go tonight. Saint Mary's looks to match Acadia and UNB at the top of the standings when they travel to Moncton to face the Aigles Bleus and UPEI is in Halifax for a match-up against Dalhousie.

- UNB is back on home-ice next Friday night when they host Moncton on Home Depot night at the AUC. Game time is 7PM.

Friday, November 8, 2019

Reds Lackluster In Loss

The Saint Mary's Huskies were blown out by the University of New Brunswick Reds in the season opener. Tonight they turned the tables, stunning the top ranked and defending champions 3-1 at the Aitken Centre to hand UNB their first regulation loss on home ice in 22 months.

- The game never saw its first goal until the latter stages of the 2nd period. A hard point shot ricocheted off the end boards and came out the other side, right to Mitchell Balmas who backhanded it past Samuel Harvey. The power play marker was the only one through 40 minutes.

- Trailing 1-0 heading into the 3rd period the Reds came out with a lack of urgency as they didn't generate their first shot on goal until just under seven minutes into the frame. They then had a power play opportunity snuffed out only 14 seconds in when Patrick Watling took an offensive zone penalty.

- The Huskies power play struck again at 13:13 to extend their lead when Connor McGlynn put in the puck from a sharp angle from the goal line.

- Tyler Boland got that one right back and gave UNB some life 25 seconds later when he weaved through the slot and wired a wrist shot past Erik Brassard.

- The Reds pulled Harvey with two minutes remaining, but didn't get a shot on goal. An empty net goal from Fredericton native Noah Zilbert at 19:52 salted the win away for the Huskies.

- Shots in the game were 30-26 for UNB with period totals of 10-5, 12-13, and 8-8.

- Although they had 30 shots on goal, the Reds didn't force Brassard to make nearly enough tough saves. Outside of hitting a couple posts and a few scrambles in front of the net, the high-powered UNB offense was stifled.

- Special teams were the difference. UNB entered the game with the league's top ranked penalty kill and power play, but SMU went 2 for 5 on the power play while the Reds were 0 for 5, which included a 65 second two man advantage midway through the game.

- Benjamin Gagne was the lone scratch.

- The Huskies were without three of their top players in Dawson Theede, Logan DeNoble, and Alex Peters.

- Attendance was reported as a generous 1972. Fredericton was hit with their first storm of the season, which no doubt kept many away. As a result, the atmosphere in the rink was almost non-existent.

- Samuel Dove-McFalls won 14 out of 19 face-offs, helping UNB to a 37 for 64 night in the dot.

- Zilbert's goal was the first empty net goal UNB has allowed in conference play since January 24th, 2015 against Acadia.

- UNB's last regulation loss on home ice came on January 6th, 2018 in a 5-2 setback against St. FX.

- Before tonight they had gone 33-0-3 at the AUC since that loss.

- Interestingly, Saint Mary's have now won three of their last four games at the AUC. They won 2-1 in OT and 4-3 in OT in their first two trips to Fredericton last season. UNB took the third meeting by a 3-1 count.

- The Huskies have done as good a job as any team at stifling UNB's attack at the AUC. The Reds have only scored 15 goals in their last seven home games versus SMU.

- In three of those games UNB have been held to one goal. By comparison, in the 41 home games they have played against non-SMU teams since the beginning of the 2017-2018 season the Reds have averaged 5.51 goals per game and never scored fewer than two goals.

- If there is a silver-lining to the evening it is that the 1st place Acadia Axmen saw their nine game winning streak end with a 4-2 loss in Moncton to the Aigles Bleus. The UPEI Panthers doubled up St. FX 6-3 in Charlottetown in the other contest on the schedule.

- The Reds will need a much better effort tomorrow when they face Acadia with first place on the line. A reminder that the game is scheduled for a 4PM start.

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

UNB Holds Ring Ceremony

The 2018-2019 University Cup champion Reds were celebrated one last time last evening. During a special ceremony at Kingswood Lodge, members of the team were presented with their championship rings. This capped off arguably the finest season in school history, in which UNB posted a 37-4-3 record - including a perfect 8-0 mark in postseason play - en route to their 8th national championship.

Here are a few pictures from the night (courtesy @UNBMHockey):



Watling Named Athlete Of The Month

Reds forward Patrick Watling has been named the UNB Reds/Valley Graphics male Athlete of the Month for October.

Watling posted four points in two exhibition games and another seven in regular season action, helping UNB to a 6-1 regular season record (and a 7-2 record overall) during the month.

Watling and the Reds will look to continue their success this weekend with a pair of home games versus top ten competition. They face the #8 Saint Mary's Huskies at 7PM on Friday night and then turn around for a 4PM puck drop against the #4 ranked Acadia Axemen Saturday afternoon.

U Sports Top Ten (#6): Reds Hold At #1

The University of New Brunswick Reds have held on to the top spot for another week in the latest men's hockey rankings, which were released yesterday.

The top five spots all remained unchanged with UNB (1814.14 ELO points), Alberta (1790.57), Carleton (1700.76), Acadia (1652.31), and Calgary (1618.29) holding their positions.

The Saskatchewan Huskies (1617.07) and McGill Redmen (1615.10) both moved up three spots to 6th and 7th respectively. Saint Mary's (1608.82) re-enter the rankings at number eight with Mount Royal (1598.21) and Guelph (1576.23) - also back in the top ten - rounding out this week's rankings.

Dropping out of the rankings are the St. FX X-Men (6th) and UQTR Patriotes (7th).

Here are the notable match-ups this coming week:

FRIDAY
#8 Saint Mary's at #1 UNB
#2 Alberta at #5 Calgary
#3 Carleton at #7 McGill

SATURDAY
#4 Acadia at #1 UNB
#5 Calgary at #2 Alberta
#7 McGill at Ottawa

SUNDAY
#3 Carleton at Ottawa

Saturday, November 2, 2019

Boucher's Big Night Paces Reds

Matthew Boucher scored four goals as the University of New Brunswick Reds won their third consecutive game with a 6-3 victory over the UPEI Panthers tonight at the Aitken Centre. UNB improves to 8-2-0 on the season, pulling back within two points of the idle Acadia Axemen (9-1-0).

A dominating opening period effort for the Reds - who out-shot the Panthers 18-5 in the game's opening twenty minutes - was rewarded at 14:39 with a power play goal. Mark Rassell sent a pass from the bottom of the right face-off circle to Boucher, who was all alone at the back door for the tap-in. Brady Gilmour also picked up an assist on the goal, which was UNB's league-leading 17th power play marker of the season.

A sloppy first couple of minutes of the second period cost the Reds their lead as Owen Headrick's point shot was deflected in the high-slot and got past Rylan Parenteau to tie the game 1-1 just 17 seconds into the period. After a couple of early penalties, which put the Panthers on a brief 5-on-3 advantage, were killed off the Reds got back to their game and broke it open. Boucher (LeBlanc, Gatenby) restored the lead at 7:28, taking a pass while cutting through the neutral zone, and snapping the puck past Simon Hofley's blocker and into the far side of the net. He completed the hat-trick at 11:02 when he pounced on a loose puck in the crease and helped it across the goal line. Samual Dove-McFalls and Patrick Watling were awarded the assists on the insurance goal. The onslaught continued just over two minutes later as Olivier LeBlanc's (Goulet) wrist shot snuck through Hofley to make it 4-1 at 13:20. Tyler Boland (Bennett, Anderson) put a one-timer under the cross-bar for another power play goal at 16:06 to finish a 8:38 stretch in which the Reds erupted for four unanswered goals. A Doug Blaisdell shot through traffic at 18:38 briefly stopped the bleeding for the Panthers, but Boucher (Watling, Simpson) got his fourth of the night on a scramble around the goal with 18 seconds remaining in the period to give UNB a 6-2 lead heading into intermission. The Reds out-shot UPEI 19-9 in the period.

Although UNB once again controlled play in the 3rd period, it was the Panthers scoring the lone goal with Conor MacEachern navigating the puck through a number of bodies and past a screened Parenteau, cutting the lead to three at 13:38. In search of his 5th goal of the night Boucher put a shot off the cross-bar, but that would be as close as UNB would come to scoring in the period as the game would end 6-3. Shots in the period were 15-5 for the Reds.

- Benjamin Gagne was the lone scratch for UNB.

- Shots were 52-19 for the Reds.

- UNB went 2 for 5 on the power play. UPEI came up empty on four chances.

- The Reds won 44 out of 75 face-offs with Dove-McFalls doing the most damage with a 19 for 24 night.

- Boucher (obviously) was named the player of the game. Watling (2 assists) and LeBlanc (1 goal, 1 assist) were the other two stars.

- 12 different players had a point for UNB.

- The Reds are operating at 31.6% on the power play so far this season, scoring 18 times on 57 chances.

- UNB have now won 19 straight home games versus the Panthers.

- This is the first four goal game by a UNB player in a conference game since Kyle Bailey also had four against St. Thomas on January 10th, 2010.

- Remarkably, the last five occurrences have been in post-season play - Philippe Maillet vs. Acadia in the 2015 AUS playoffs, Cam Braes (vs. Windsor) and Philippe Halley (vs. Guelph) in back to back games at the 2015 University Cup, Braes again in the 2017 University Cup final against Saskatchewan, and Kris Bennett against St. FX in last year's UCup semi-final.

- There was only one other game on the docket this evening and it saw Saint Mary's down St. FX 2-1 in a shoot-out.

- The Reds are back home next weekend for a doubleheader. They face the Saint Mary's Huskies on Friday night (7PM) and then take on the Acadia Axemen in a rare Saturday afternoon (4PM) tilt.

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Reds Clip Aigles Bleus

The University of New Brunswick Reds never trailed as they played a solid puck possession and puck pressure game in a 4-2 victory tonight in Moncton against the Aigles Bleus. UNB moves to 7-2-0 on the season.

The two teams traded goals in a 1st period that was dominated by the Reds. UNB had the first eight shots of the game and opened the scoring on the power play when Stephen Anderson (Watling, Boland) banged the puck in during a scramble in front of goaltender Etienne Montpetit at 6:13. The Aigles Bleus quickly struck back with Joey Richard depositing a rebound past Samuel Harvey on Moncton's first chance of the game 83 seconds later. However, the UNB power play once again came through to restore the lead. At 17:32 Patrick Watling (Bennett, Anderson) stepped into a loose puck in the slot and wired a shot into the top corner. Penalties were the story of the period as UNB was given four power play opportunities to Moncton's one chance. Shots were 17-4 for the Reds.

UNB extended their lead at 9:45 of the 2nd period with Oliver Cooper and Mark Rassell executing a flawless two-on-one. Cooper carried the puck down the right side and the veteran fed the sophomore with a nice pass that was promptly one-timed past a helpless Montpetit. With the game seemingly under control a late Marcus McIvor penalty would prove costly. Maxime St-Cyr. - arguably the league's most dangerous sniper - took a pass from behind the net and found himself all alone in front. He made no mistake, beating Harvey glove side to make it 3-2 with 42 seconds left in the period. UNB out-shot Moncton 13-6 in the frame.

The final twenty minutes may have been the least exciting of the night with only 11 shots combined - six for Moncton and five for UNB - and the Reds easing some of the tension with an insurance goal 37 seconds into the period. It was a bit of a strange goal. The play was around the Moncton net when, all of a sudden, the Reds players on the ice put their hands in the air and started celebrating. Confusion ensued as it didn't appear anyone else knew where the puck was, but after some investigating it was found lodged inside the net. A quick conference amongst the four officials determined it was indeed a good goal with Rassell (Cooper, Dove-McFalls) getting credit for his second of the game. Trailing by two Moncton pulled their goalie with three minutes remaining, but neither team was able to generate much, making the final 4-2.

- UNB went with their usual line-up, meaning Benjamin Gagne was the lone scratch.

- Shots were 35-16 for the Reds.

- UNB went 2 for 5 with the man advantage. All of their chance came within the first 22 minutes of the game.

- Moncton was 1 for 4 on the power play as they had the last three opportunities in the game, including both chances in the 3rd period.

- Samual Harvey out-dueled Etienne Montpetit in a battle of the two best goaltenders to come out of the QMJHL in recent years.

- It was a rough night in the face-off circle for the Reds, losing 34 out of 66 draws.

- Rassell was named the player of the game.

- Attendance was 523.

- With the win UNB (7-2-0) moves to within two points of the 1st place Acadia Axemen (8-1-0).

- Saint Mary's and St. FX also played tonight, making up a game that was canceled earlier this month. Stephen Johnson netted a hat-trick as the Huskies blanked the X-Men 4-0 in Antigonish.

- UNB is now off until Saturday night when they welcome the UPEI Panthers to the AUC for a 7PM start.

Saturday, October 26, 2019

Reds Rebound

Coming off of a loss the night before, the University of New Brunswick Reds needed a big effort to salvage a weekend split and they responded, skating to a dominant 6-0 win over the Dalhousie Tigers tonight in Halifax.

Since the webcast was down for the entire 1st period all we know is UNB jumped out to a 2-0 lead  thanks to a goal from Matt Murphy (Simpson) at 4:29 and a power play marker off the stick of Mark Rassell (Murphy, Goulet) at 5:51. Shots in the period were 22-5.

It wasn't until late in the 2nd period that the Reds would strike again as Tigers goaltender Connor Hicks once again did his best to keep his team in the game. At 18:15 a shot up high on Hicks rattled the Tigers netminder, sending him to the ice in pain. Kris Bennett (Boland, Anderson) was right there to take advantage, tapping a loose puck into the empty net for the power play goal to make it 3-0. It proved to be the most evenly played period of the game with the shots favouring the visitors by a 15-10 margin.

The Reds closed out the game with a trio of goals in a physical and chippy 3rd period. At 9:49 Mark Simpson (Boucher, Watling) jammed the puck in during a scramble at the side of the net to push the lead to 4-0. Tyler Boland then forced a turnover behind the Tigers net, finding Brady Gilmour in front who slid the puck under Hicks for his first career U Sports goal at 16:44. A Marcus McIvor (Carroll, Dove-McFalls) slap shot through a screen with two minutes remaining capped the scoring. Shots were 21-3 in the period.

- Kris Bennett was back in the line-up after missing last night's game. Benjamin Gagne was out.

- Shots in the game were 58-18.

- Samuel Harvey picked up his first career shutout.

- UNB also dominated in the face-off circle, winning 55 out of 79 draws. Dove-McFalls saw the most action, winning 16 out of his 22 draws. Alexandre Goulet (13 out of 18) and Simpson (12 out of 18) also had standout performances.

- The Reds were 3 for 5 on the power play. Dalhousie came up empty on their five opportunities.

- Matt Murphy was named the player of the game. 

- Attendance was 160.

- There was only one other game in the conference tonight. The Acadia Axemen pushed their winning streak to eight games, scoring three unanswered goals in the 3rd period to stun UPEI 3-2 in Charlottetown.

- The 8-1-0 Axemen continue to lead the conference with UNB (6-2-0) and St. FX (4-2-1) in 2nd and 3rd place, respectively.

- The Reds are back in action on Wednesday night when they travel to Moncton for a mid-week date with the Aigles Bleus. Game time is 7PM.

Friday, October 25, 2019

Reds Drop A Close One

The St. FX X-Men scored two quick goals early in the 3rd period to build a 3-1 lead and then held on for a 3-2 victory over the University of New Brunswick Reds tonight in Antigonish.

Alexandre Goulet and Tyler Boland scored power play goals for UNB, who travel to Halifax for a date with the Dalhousie Tigers tomorrow night.

Thursday, October 24, 2019

U Sports Top Ten (#4): Back On Top

For the 132nd time in school history, the University of New Brunswick Reds are the top ranked men's hockey team in the nation.

In the latest rankings released on Tuesday, UNB - coming off of a 2-0-0 weekend - gained 1825.12 ELO points. This out-distanced the former #1 ranked Alberta Golden Bears (1779.69) after the Bears suffered their first loss of the season, a 7-3 home loss to the Mount Royal Cougars on Friday night.

The 5-1-0 Carleton Ravens (1648.30) jumped two spots to 3rd, which pushed Ottawa (1643.10) down a spot to 4th. Guleph (1626.48) also gained two positions, coming in at 5th this week to edge Calgary (1619.21). The 5-0-1 Dinos are the only team in the country without a regulation loss.

Rounding out the top ten are Acadia (1592.89), Saskatchewan (1589.48), St. FX (1585.24), who drop five positions to 9th, and Mount Royal (1582.24).

Here is a look at some notable games for the week ahead:

FRIDAY
#1 UNB at #9 St. FX
Saint Mary's at #7 Acadia
McGill at #4 Ottawa
#6 Calgary at #8 Saskatchewan

SATURDAY
#6 Calgary at #8 Saskatchewan

Goulet Named AotW (Again)

For the second time already this young season, forward Alexandre Goulet has been named the UNB Reds/Papa John's Pizza male athlete of the week. A day later he was named the Subway AUS male athlete of the week.

The 3rd year forward had a big weekend to help the Reds to two crucial wins. On Friday night he was named the player of the game in a 6-3 victory over St. FX. He scored what would stand as the game winning goal and also had an assist. The next night against Dalhousie he had two assists in regulation time before scoring the game winning goal in the shootout in a 4-3 win over the Tigers.

Goulet is currently third in the conference with 10 points, including five goals, in six games.

UNB will face the same two teams this weekend - X-Men on Friday and Dalhousie on Saturday - but this time on the road. Game time is scheduled for 7PM for both tilts.

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Reds Survive Scare

The visiting Dalhousie Tigers played the defending National Champion University of New Brunswick Reds even through 65 minutes of play, but the home side ultimately prevailed with a 4-3 shootout victory tonight at the Aitken Centre. UNB moves to 5-1-0 after their first trip through the league this season. The Tigers fall to 2-4-2, picking up an important point in a game they weren't expected to.

The two teams traded goals in each of the three periods with UNB holding three one goal leads only to see Dalhousie tie it up each time. Mark Simpson (McIvor, Goulet) opened the scoring at 9:27 when he got the puck in the right face-off circle with his back to the net, spun around, and beat Connor Hicks on the near side. The Tigers responded at 16:32 with a lucky one. Dillon Boucher's shot was kicked out by Samuel Harvey, but the puck hit the skates of the UNB defenceman coming back towards the net and deflected in. The score would remain 1-1 after twenty minutes of playw ith teh Reds holding a 14-7 advantage in shots.

UNB regained the lead at 6:25 of the 2nd period. Alexandre Goulet dug the puck out from behind the Tigers goal and made a short pass to Mark Rassell at the side of the net. Rassell managed to roof the puck from a sharp angle in tight to make it 2-1. Tristan Pomerleau picked up the other assist on the goal. Dalhousie evened the game once again, this time with a power play goal at 15:42. After UNB had a good chance shorthanded, the Tigers turned the puck back up the ice with Andrew Shewfelt finishing off a nice rush to knot the game at 2, which is how things would stay for the remainder of the period. Shots in the period were 16-7 for the Reds.

Dalhousie had an incredible chance to take the lead in the 3rd period when they picked off an errant clearing pass up the middle of the Reds zone, giving them a 2-on-0 down low. Somehow Harvey kept the puck out with a couple of big stops in quick succession. UNB would grab their third lead of the game with a power play strike at 14:04. After Olivier LeBlanc's point shot went wide Kris Bennett tried to jam the puck in at the side of the net. Hicke denied him, but Patrick Watling was right there to jump on a loose puck at the lip of the crease, giving UNB a 3-2 lead. Clinging on to the lead the Reds would surrender the tying goal with 47 seconds left in regulation and Hicks on the bench for an extra attacker. Shewfelt was all alone in front of the net when he received a pass out of the corner and made no mistake in putting it off the iron and in for his second of the night, this one tying the game 3-3. Shots favoured UNB 13-4 in the period.

The 3-on-3 overtime period was dominated by the Reds, who out-shot the Tigers 10-2 and had numerous glorious chances to end the game over the five minutes. However, Hicks held the fort to send the game to a shootout. In the shootout Goulet was up first and he used his patented move - coming in wide, cutting across the top of the crease, and patiently waiting until the goalie goes down before putting the puck under the cross bar - to get UNB on the board. After Connor Welsh came up empty on the Tigers first attempt Matthew Boucher put the pressure on when he beat Hicks with a quick snap shot. Needing a goal to stay alive Aiden Jamieson's deke attempt was easily snuffed out by Harvey to give UNB a tougher-than-expected 4-3 win.

- UNB went with the same line-up as last night as Benjamin Gagne was the lone scratch.

- Shots in the game were 53-20 for the Reds.

- UNB was 1 for 6 on the power play. Dalhousie was 1 for 5.

- The Reds dominated the face-off dot, winning 46 out of 77 face-offs. Mark Simpson had a big night, going 19 out of 25.

- Attendance was 1984.

- The game's three stars were 1) Alexandre Goulet 2) Connor Hicks 3) Matthew Boucher.

- Before the game Kris Bennett was awarded the annual Rod Pike Memorial Scholarship, which is given to the player "who has special leadership abilities, a high compete level, and goes the extra mile for the team and his teammates."

- In his last four games against UNB, Hicks has faced a whopping 231 shots. He has turned aside 219 of them for a sparkling 0.948 save percentage.

- This is UNB's 34th straight win over Dalhousie. However, this is only the third game in that span to go beyond regulation.

- It is their 27th consecutive victory over the Tigers at the AUC.

- In other AUS action tonight, the first place Acadia Axemen maintained their two point lead over UNB (albeit having played one extra game) with a 4-3 home victory over the UPEI Panthers. Meanwhile, in Moncton the Aigles Bleus handed the St. FX X-Men their second loss of the weekend with a 6-3 decision.

- The Reds are on the road next weekend for rematches against this weekend's opponents. They are in Antigonish on Friday night to face St. FX and then travel to Halifax to take on Dalhousie the next evening. Game time for both is slated for 7PM.


Friday, October 18, 2019

Big 1st Period Propels Reds

The University of New Brunswick Reds scored four times in a dominant opening period on their way to a 6-3 victory over their rival St. FX X-Men before a large crowd tonight at the AUC. UNB improves to 4-1-0 on the season while the X-Men suffer their first loss in regulation, dropping to 3-1-1.

The Reds got off to a quick start, taking advantage of a couple of fortunate bounces to build a 2-0 lead just over five minutes into the game. Kris Bennett got the scoring started at 3:12 when Joe Gatenby skied the puck from his own end, over the X-Men defencemen, and had it land in the slot. Instead of the puck hitting the ice and rolling harmlessly toward the net, it had some english on it and spun back towards the blue line where Bennett almost overskated it, but was able to corral it and go in all alone on Joseph Raaymakers, beating the freshman goalie with a quick deke to make it 1-0. The lead was extended at 5:23 thanks to another fortuitous bounce after Matt Murphy (LeBlanc) let a wrist shot go from along the boards just inside the blue line. Raaymakers attempted to blocker the puck into the corner, but instead he sent it straight up in the air, eventually landing behind him in his crease and rolling into the net. Murphy was also involved in UNB's third goal at 13:45. Oliver Cooper picked up the rebound off of a Murphy point shot and tried a wrap around. While his shot was stopped, Raaymakers wasn't able to hold the post with his left leg and James McEwan pounced on the loose puck, jamming it in. Less than a minute later St. FX did what they tend to do when getting blown out, resorting to physical play and cheap shots. In this case it was Lane Cormier hitting Patrick Watling late and from behind in front of the UNB bench. It was the beginning of a rough night for Watling, who was also the victim of a hit to the head later in the game. In the ensuing skirmish Reagan Spears lived up to his name, spearing Joe Gatenby and earning a four minute double minor penalty. The extended power play meant UNB had a golden chance to put the game away early, but it was St. FX getting on the board. Two X-Men forced a turnover at their own blue line, which sent Matthew Graham away on a shorthanded breakaway. Graham snapped a shot past Rylan Parenteau's blocker to cut the lead to 3-1 at 15:32. The momentum proved to be short-lived, however. Later in the power play some nice passing got the puck to Matthew Boucher (Rassell, Goulet) in the left face-off circle and he put the puck in the far corner at 17:31 to restore UNB's three goal lead. The Reds would take a 4-1 lead into the intermission, out-shooting the X-Men 19-3 in the process.

The 2nd period saw St. FX use a couple lucky bounces of their own to get back in the game. At 3:41, while on the power play, an uncovered Bryson Cianfrone had the puck ping-pong off of some traffic in the slot right to him at the left of the net. He didn't miss a wide open cage, cutting the lead to 4-2. UNB got that one back at 7:02 thanks to a full two minute 5-on-3 advantage. After failing on their first two attempts at setting up Alexandre Goulet for a one timer the third time proved to be the charm as Goulet (Boland, Anderson) ripped a shot from the bottom of the right face-off circle into the top corner. As is often the case, the X-Men would not go away and at 16:10 they once again made it a two goal game. The goal was similar to Murphy's in that the puck got knocked up into the air and came down near Parenteau's crease. A scramble ensued around the blue paint and it was Anthony Difruscia getting the last touch on the X-Men's third goal of the night, which once again cut the deficit to two. The shots in the period were 10-5 for UNB.

Although the X-Men did not generate much offense in the 3rd period - they were out-shot 9-2 - it wasn't until Matthew Boucher's second power play goal of the night at 13:38 that UNB finally got some breathing room. Boucher got the puck in almost the exact same spot as is first goal, but instead of going far side he put the puck off the near post and in to make it 6-3. An X-Men power play a few minutes later proved to be uneventful and the two teams skated out the UNB victory without any further incidents.

- Mark Simpson was back in the line-up. Benjamin Gagne was the lone scratch.

- The X-Men were missing their two best rookies as both Jeremiah Addison and and Declan Smith were out.

- Shots in the game were 38-10.

- Although two of the goals he allowed were the result of some unfortunate puck luck, Rylan Parenteau seemed to be fighting the puck most of the game. Nonetheless, he improves to 3-0-0 om the young season.

- On the other hand, Joseph Raaymakers - who was rumoured to be a target of UNB's this past summer - settled down nicely after the rough 1st period. The Reds had a number of great chances that he was able to turn aside to keep his team in it.

- UNB was 3 for 7 on the power play, but also gave up a shorthanded goal. The X-Men were 1 for 5.

- The Reds won 39 out of 66 face-offs with Boland (11 of 17) and Samuel Dove-McFalls (9 of 12) leading the way on this night.

- The box score can be found here, but it is full of errors. For example, it has St. FX scoring to tie the game 1-1. In reality they were already down 3-0 when they scored. Hopefully it gets updated/fixed shortly.

- Attendance was 3074, which is exceptional for a game this early in the season. For comparison, they drew 2435 in their second home game last season.

- UNB have out-scored St. FX 35-8 in winning the last five meetings between the two.

- St. FX hasn't had more than 20 shots on goal in any of their last nine games against UNB. They have averaged only 15.1 shots per game in that span.

- It was the second straight game where the Reds blitzed the X-Men right out of the gate. In last year's national semi-final UNB had a 4-0 lead and out-shot St. FX 24-8 in the opening period.

- Elsewhere around the league tonight, Nick Welsh had six assists in Saint Mary's 8-2 road win over the UPEI Panthers and Dalhousie scored a 3-2 overtime decision in Moncton against the Aigles Bleus.

- The Reds are back on home ice tomorrow night when they host the Dalhousie Tigers in the annual Rod Pike Memorial Game. Puck drop is 7PM.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

U Sports Top Ten (#3): Reds Remain 2nd

The Alberta Golden Bears and University of New Brunswick Reds continue to lead the way in the latest men's hockey top ten rankings.

Alberta improved to 4-0-0 on the season with two wins over Saskatchewan in Edmonton so it comes as no shock they stay in the top spot with 1822.19 ELO points. UNB has 1800.64 after two weekend wins of their own.

After the clear-cut top two, there are two clusters of four teams that make up the rest of the top ten.

Ottawa (1686.68) leapfrogged St. FX (1664.62) to move up to third while Carleton (1657.78) and Calgary (1639.38) stayed put at 5th and 6th, respectively.

The rankings are rounded out by Guelph (1594.44), Queen's (1564.39), Ryerson (1561.97), and Saint Mary's (1556.95), who are making their first appearance of the season.

Interestingly, the Acadia Axemen, who lead the conference with a 4-1-0 record and have victories over both UNB and St. FX, are nowhere to be seen while Queen's (2-2-0) and Ryerson (1-1-0) are both ranked.

The Reds and X-Men face each other Friday night at the AUC in the marquee game of the weekend. UNB then hosts Dalhousie the next night. Game time for both is 7PM.

Watling Nabs Weekly Awards

Reds forward Patrick Watling was named both the UNB Reds/Papa John's Pizza male Athlete of the Week and Subway AUS male Athlete of the Week for his efforts in a pair of victories this past weekend.

Watling earned first star honours in UNB's home opening 4-0 win over Moncton on Friday night as he had two goals, including a shorthanded marker, and an assist. He was held off the score sheet, but was a +1, in Saturday's 3-2 road win against UPEI.

The former AHLer is off to a strong start in his 5th year of eligibility, racking up five points through four games.

UNB is at home this weekend for games against St. FX on Friday and Dalhousie on Saturday. It should be noted that the 50/50 pot for Friday night will be starting at $2579 due to a previously unclaimed prize.

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Reds Pick Up Tough Win

For the second straight night the University of New Brunswick Reds found themselves in a tight game into the 3rd period. Once again they emerged victorious, hanging on for a 3-2 victory over the UPEI Panthers in a physical affair tonight in Charlottetown.

The visitors opened the scoring on the power play 7:57 into the game. Mark Rassell's attempted wrap around rolled off the end of his stick, but Tyler Boland was right there to pick up the puck at the opposite side of the net and fire it past Simon Hofley. Brady Gilmour was credited with the other assist on the goal. The Panthers didn't take long to respond. At 10:04 Samuel Harvey kicked a juicy rebound out in to the slot to Darian Pilon, who hammered a one timer into the net to knot the game at one. It was the first goal UNB had surrendered in over seven periods of hockey, going back to the 2nd period last Saturday against Boston College. The game would remain tied as UNB held a slight 10-9 shot advantage in the opening period.

After a fairly uneventful 2nd period in which UNB out-shot the Panthers 15-6 and each team came up empty on a power play opportunity, the game headed to the final frame still deadlocked 1-1.

The Reds would finally break through again 8:58 into the 3rd period. Samuel Dove-McFalls won an offensive zone face-off back to a defenceman, who put a shot off the end boards. The puck bounced hard off the boards and towards the side of the net where Oliver Cooper was camped out. Cooper pounced on the loose puck and jammed it in, giving UNB the lead with his first goal of the season. Although Marcus McIvor was given credit for the primary assist, on the webcast it looked to be Noah Carroll who made the play. At 11:16 the Reds made it a two goal game. Matt Murphy carried the puck down the left side and deep into Panthers territory before sending a sharp angle shot towards the net, where Tyler Boland was able to deflect the puck past Hofley before the goaltender was able to glove it down. However, the breathing room evaporated at 15:22 when Jesse Sutton tipped the puck from just outside the crease and into the far corner late in a Panthers power play to pull the home side back within a goal. UPEI applied all kinds of pressure late in a desperate attempt to tie the score, but Harvey and the Reds held on during a last second scramble in front of the net to preserve the victory. Shots in the period were 9-7 for the Panthers.

- The Reds dressed a full complement of players with Mark Rassell back in the line-up after serving a one game suspension. Mark Simpson remained out with an injury while Tristan Pomerleau left in the 2nd period favouring his right leg and never returned.

- UNB out-shot the Panthers 32-24 overall.

- Each team scored a power play goal with UNB going 1 for 3 and UPEI 1 for 4.

- Face-offs were almost even with UNB holding a slim 35-34 advantage. Boland (10 for 17) and Alexandre Goulet (10 for 18) were the best on the night for the Reds.

- Attendance was 733.

- Boland was named the player of the game. Cooper and Hofley were the game's other two stars.

- UNB has now won nine straight games over the Panthers and are on a 26-1-1 run against UPEI since the beginning of the 2015-2016 season.

- In other conference play tonight Saint Mary's posted a convincing 6-2 road win over Dalhousie and Acadia recovered from allowing two late goals - including the tying one with 8 seconds remaining in regulation - to beat St. FX 5-4 at home on a Stephen Harper penalty shot goal in overtime.

- Next weekend UNB is at home for a pair of games for the first time this season. They host the St. FX X-Men on Friday night and then the Dalhousie Tigers are in town the next night. Game time is 7PM for both match-ups.

Anderson's Goal

In case you missed it, here is Stephen Anderson's beauty from last night:


Friday, October 11, 2019

Watling, Anderson Lead Reds In Opener

The University of New Brunswick Reds celebrated their 2019 University Cup victory one last time by raising their 8th National Championship banner to the Aitken Centre rafters and then went out and won their 31st straight home opener, shutting out the Universite de Moncton Aigles Bleus 4-0.

Before the game began the 2019-2020 Reds were introduced, along with representatives from each of UNB's previous seven championship teams. The last two members announced were 5th year forward Stephen Anderson, who brought out the AUS trophy, and 5th year defenceman - and team captain - Marcus McIvor, who skated out with the University Cup. After placing the trophies on a table at centre ice that had the AUS and U Sports championship banners draped over it, McIvor helped pull down a black curtain that unveiled the 2019 National Championship banner hanging from the rafters.

Once the ceremony was over it was business as usual. The two teams skated through a scoreless opening twenty minutes, despite UNB out-shooting Moncton 15-3.

The Reds finally broke through early in the 2nd period while shorthanded. Tristan Pomerleau worked the puck up to Tyler Boland, who was joined by Patrick Watling on a two-on-one break. Boland patiently waited for the defender to commit to going down before sending a saucer pass over to Watling, who one-timed the puck past reigning U Sports rookie of the year Etienne Montpetit. It would be the only goal of the period as UNB took a a slim 1-0 lead into the final frame. Shots in the period were 11-3 for the Reds.

UNB got some breathing room in the early parts of the 3rd period, connecting for a pair of goals. At 3:53 Watling got his second of the night on an almost carbon-copy of his first goal, only it was Alexandre Goulet finding him on the two-on-one rush. Matthew Boucher also picked up an assist on the goal. Less than two minutes later it was Stephen Anderson (Watling, Gatenby) picking up a loose puck during a scramble in the slot and snapping it in, extending the lead to 3-0 at 5:32. Anderson added another at 13:26, joining Kris Bennett's goal last weekend against Boston College as an early contender for goal of the year. The PEI product out-muscled three defenders just inside the Aigles Bleus blue-line to go in all alone on Montpetit, turning the netminder inside out with a backhand-to-forehand deke to make it 4-0. The highlight reel goal would prove to be the final one of the night as UNB out-shot Moncton 10-6 in the period.

- The Reds were playing with a short bench tonight. Mark Rassell was serving a one game suspension stemming from an ejection late in last Saturday's game against Acadia. Mark Simpson was not originally listed as a scratch, but didn't play as he continues to nurse an injury.

- Moncton was also playing shorthanded as they only had 16 skaters dressed. Justin Guenette is serving a four game suspension for an incident last weekend against St. FX.

- UNB out-shot Moncton 36-12 on the night.

- Neither team was particularly great on the power play, going scoreless on five opportunities each.

- Rylan Parenteau picked up his 6th career shut-out. His five shut-outs in league play only trail Travis Fullerton (14), Reg Bourcier (7), and Alex Dubeau (6) in UNB history.

- The Reds won 35 out of 59 face-offs. Alexandre Goulet (13 out of 18) and Samuel Dove-McFalls (10 out of 16) led the way.

- Tristan Pomerleau was +4 on the night.

- Kris Bennett is a newly appointed alternate captain this season.

- Attendance was 2766, a solid number considering it was a Friday heading into a long weekend.

- UNB unveiled new white jerseys for the game, featuring black shoulders and black numbers, a red nameplate on the back, and a New Brunswick flag on the left shoulder. They are a definite step up from last season's look.

- Patrick Watling had one goal and three assists in 14 games last year. Playing on the top line alongside Tyler Boland and Stephen Anderson so far this year, the 5th year forward already has two goals and three assists in three games. He was undoubtedly the best player on the ice tonight for either team, creating a number of chances throughout the game.

- The Reds have now won 16 straight home games versus Moncton.

- UNB hasn't dropped a home opener since a 6-5 overtime loss to Saint Mary's on November 5th, 1988.

- In the only other AUS game tonight it was Acadia going on the road and beating Dalhousie 4-1.

- The Reds are back at it tomorrow night with a game in Charlottetown against the UPEI Panthers. Game time is 7PM and it can be viewed at AUStv.ca.

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

U Sports Top Ten (#2): Leaders Unchanged

The top four teams stayed put in the latest U Sports men's hockey top ten rankings released earlier today.

The Alberta Golden Bears, fresh off a win over the NCAA #1 ranked Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs, remained in the pole position with 1799.88 ELO points. UNB (1786.64), St. FX (1693.88), and Ottawa (1660.21) also held onto their position.

Meanwhile, teams five through ten all saw movement. Carleton (5th) and Calgary (6th) swapped spots. Ryerson (7th) jumped two spots and Saskatchewan re-entered the ranking at #8 despite not playing a game last weekend. Rounding out the top ten were Queen's (down one spot to 9th) and McGill (down three to 10th).

UNB resume their AUS schedule this weekend with their home opener and banner raising ceremony Friday night against Moncton at the AUC. They then head to Charlottetown for a Saturday night tilt against the UPEI Panthers.

Bennett's Filthy Goal

In case you haven't saw it yet, here is Kris Bennett's ridiculous between-the-legs goal against Boston College on Saturday.

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Reds Bury Bears

The University of New Brunswick Reds received goals from five different players and Samuel Harvey turned aside everything directed his way in an impressive 5-0 victory over the University of Maine Black Bears this afternoon in Orono.

- UNB got the scoring started 5:36 into the contest when Mark Rassell found Matthew Boucher with a cross-ice pass at the back door for a power play marker. Brady Gilmour received the secondary assist on the goal.

- Black Bears goaltender Stephen Mundinger stood on his head for the first half of the game. He was replaced by 2018 Vancouver draft pick and freshman Matthew Thiessen just past the midway mark of the 2nd period.

- The Reds gave Thiessen a rude welcoming. Moments after coming into the game Alexandre Goulet's attempted pass to a driving Kris Bennett hit a stick of a Maine defender and deflected in to the net. After originally waving the goal off due to the puck being kicked in, the refs went to video review and quickly corrected the call when it was clear it hit a stick instead. The goal came at 10:48 and made it 2-0.

- UNB extended the lead on the power play 36 seconds later with Olivier LeBlanc (Boland, Bennett) unleashing a blast from the point.

- Just over two minutes later the Reds got their prettiest goal of the night. Bennett got the puck to Alexandre Goulet in the slot and Goulet quickly spotted Patrick Watling to his left who had gotten in behind the defence. Goulet found the streaking Watling, who chipped the puck past Thiessen for a 4-0 advantage.

- The Reds lethal power play added another goal 48 seconds into the 3rd period. Tyler Boland (Watling, Bennett) had time and space at the left face-off circle and beat Thiessen clean with a wrist shot on the short side.

- With the outcome no longer in doubt the game featured some rough stuff in the final half of the period. Marcus McIvor and Maine's Brady Gaudette were both given five-minute majors plus a 10-minute misconduct for facemasking, a strange penalty that is enforced in NCAA that we don't see in U Sports.

- Mark Simpson was out of the line-up for UNB. Instead of going with 11 forwards and seven defenceman, Gardiner MacDougall instead chose to play defenceman Benjamin Gagne up front.

- Shots in the game were 32-14 for UNB with period totals of 12-5, 13-5, and 7-4.

- While the Reds had a number of high quality chances they didn't convert, the Black Bears offense was stymied all night as they were unable to generate much in the way of dangerous opportunities.

- Special teams play is usually a big advantage for NCAA teams during these games, however UNB had a great weekend in that regard. After going 2/4 on the power play and 3/3 on the penalty kill against Boston College yesterday afternoon, the Reds went 3/5 with the man advantage and 3/3 on the PK today.

- UNB won 39 out of 62 face-offs.

- The Reds have now won their last two meetings with Maine. They won 5-1 in the fall of 2015. They improve to 7-19-2 all-time versus the Black Bears, but are 4-5-1 in the last ten meetings.

- This is the first shutout UNB has recorded against an NCAA team since extensive game by game records have been kept (starting in 1967).

- Oddly, UNB was the only AUS team to travel to the US this weekend. Usually Acadia, St. FX, and UPEI make annual treks south of the border as well, but they all decided against it this season.

- Perhaps the biggest headline of the weekend has been the Alberta Golden Bears defeating the two-time reigning NCAA champions - and current #1 ranked - University of Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs 5-3 last night.

- As a result, there were a pair of conference games last night. St. FX handled Moncton 6-1 in Antigonish and Saint Mary's held off Dalhousie by a 4-3 score on home ice.

- Up next for UNB is (finally) a game at the AUC. They will raise their 2019 National Championship banner prior to the home opener on Friday against Moncton. Game time in 7PM.