Saturday, February 22, 2020

UNB Takes Game 2

It was a better effort for the Universite de Moncton Aigles Bleus in game two of their best 3-of-5 AUS semi-final series, but the result was the same as the University of New Brunswick Reds offense continued to roll in a 7-3 victory tonight at the AUC. UNB held serve on home ice, taking a commanding 2-0 series lead with the scene now shifting to Moncton.

It was a similar start to the previous night as neither side had much in the way of scoring chances, with the exception of a nice toe save by Rylan Parenteau in the opening minutes. The game would remain scoreless until the 16:00 mark when Tyler Boland (Watling, Anderson) picked up the puck during a scramble in front of Aigles Bleus goaltender Etienne Montpetit and put it home. The opening goal opened the floodgates for the Reds as they scored two more goals in the next 32 seconds. At 16:11 Alexandre Goulet (Gatenby, Pomerleau) spun around a defender at the Moncton bench to race in all alone on Montpetit. Goulet's nifty stickhandling opened up the goaltender's legs and he slid the puck five-hole. Just 21 seconds later it was Goulet (Hawerchuk, Murphy) again. This time he split the defence before going forehand to backhand to put the puck between Montpetit's legs, making it 3-0 with his 5th goal in four playoff periods. The wild flurry would be the only scoring in the period as UNB out-shot Moncton 13-7.

The Reds held a 21-4 shot advantage in the second period, but it was the visitors scoring the lone goal. Defenceman Olivier Desjardins sneaked in from the point and tapped the puck in at the backdoor at 14:31 to draw Moncton back within two.

After being held scoreless in the second period despite peppering Montpetit with 21 shots, UNB converted their first shot of the 3rd period. Beginning the period with a power play, Stephen Anderson (Boland, Bennett) put a shot from the hash marks into the top right corner to make it 4-1 36 seconds into the frame. The Aigles Bleus answered just over two minutes later with a power play marker of their own, although it appeared the referees missed an offside call moments prior to Vincent Deslauriers goal. The Reds quickly put the non-call behind them as Kris Bennett (Simpson, Boucher) bulldozed around Montpetit to swipe a loose puck sitting in the crease into the open net. The goal came at 3:29, restoring UNB's three goal lead only 40 seconds after Moncton had made it 4-2. The goals kept coming as Connor Hall (Watling, Anderson) put a long wrist shot past a screened Montpetit for his first career AUS playoff goal at 6:46, which pushed the lead to 6-2. A Bennett (Gatenby, Boland) power play goal at 12:03 and Deslaurier's second of the night at 14:04 rounded out the scoring on the night. Shots in the period were 10-9 for the Reds.

- UNB went with their usual line-up, meaning Noah Carroll, Benjamin Gagne, James McEwan, and Dylan Seitz were the scratches.

- Shots were 44-20 for the Reds.

- Each team had three power play opportunities. UNB scored twice while Moncton connected once with the man advantage.

- The Reds won 38 out of 57 face-offs. Samuel Dove-McFalls was the busiest of all Reds players, taking 21 draws and winning 14 of them.

- Rylan Parenteau saw the first playoff action of his UNB career. He kicked out 17 out of the 20 shots sent his way to earn the victory.

- Bennett and Deslauriers were named the players of the game for their respective teams.

- Attendance was 2652.

- This was UNB's 17th consecutive victory.

- After scoring 12 goals in their first three games against Moncton this season, the Reds have hit the back of the net 29 times in their last four meetings.

- This is the first time UNB has scored at least seven goals in back to back playoff games since doing it three times in a row in the 1997 playoffs.

- The Reds will look to wrap up the series on Monday night in Moncton. Game time is 7PM.

- The other semi-final series between Acadia and Saint Mary's resumes tomorrow night in Wolfville with the Axemen looking to go up 2-0. Puck drop is scheduled for 7PM.