Game recap by: Kirk Jessome
(Halifax, NS) – In the rescheduling of an earlier game, the Dalhousie Tigers hosted the UPEI Panthers in men's hockey action at the Halifax Forum. It took extra time and a shootout to find a winner, but the Tigers were able to start the year off with a 3-2 victory.
It didn't take long for the Tigers to find the opening goal in this one. Just two minutes into the game Jackson Playfair (Fort St. James, BC) was able to beat a defender in the attacking end and fire a low shot that snuck under the pad of Simon Hofley (Ottawa, ON) to give the Tigers an early lead.
The Panthers countered quickly on the other end with a goal of their own. On an aggressive forechecking play, the puck came off the half boards and onto the stick of Troy Lajeunesse (Dokis, ON) who lifted it short side over the pad of Reilly Pickard (Halifax, NS) to tie it up.
The Panthers were able to find another goal in the period with Sam Aulie (Lumsden, SK) firing a shot right off the draw and crashing the net for his own rebound that landed at the toe of an outstretched Pickard and was able to tap home the easy goal to make it 2-1.
At the end of an action packed first period, the Panthers held a 2-1 lead heading into the second.
The Tigers were given a prime opportunity to find an equalizer early in the second period, finding themselves on a short two-man advantage, but had some trouble getting their power play settled and the Panthers were able to kill off both penalties.
Finally getting the first scoring chance of the period, the Tigers found an equalizer midway through the period as Zachary Taylor picked up the puck on a neutral zone turnover. Taylor burst into the zone with speed, sent a quick wrist shot to the short side that Hofley was able to get a piece of, but not enough as it bounced off the glove and in to tie it up at 2-2, and Taylor earned his first career goal.
The lone goal was the only action in the period, as the teams went into the third knotted at 2-2.
The Panthers power play opportunity midway through the final period generated the best opportunities to break the deadlock, but Picard stood tall on each one, highlighted by a great glove save on a hard slapshot from Owen Headrick (Garden River, ON) at the point.
Time wound down in a quiet period, as this one headed to overtime still tied up at 2-2.
The 3-on-3 overtime period opened up lots of space for scoring chances on both ends of the ice, but each goalie was stellar in the extra frame and the game needed a shootout to decide this one.
The first shooters for each team were able to find the back of the net, while the second missed.
Aiden Jamieson (Lindsay, ON) stepped up to take the third shot for the Tigers, faked to the backhand, moved back to the forehand and as Hofley kicked the net off its pegs, calmly slid the puck into the back of the net.
It was up to Luke Kirwan (DeWitt, NY) for the Panthers to keep the game alive. Kirwan came across the blue line against Pickard and wired a slap shot from in close, but Pickard got a blocker on it, and the game went to the Tigers.
Winning the shootout 2-1, the Tigers took the game by a final score of 3-2.
Aiden Jamieson earned himself the Subway Player of the Game in this one by securing the Tigers victory with his shootout goal.
The Tigers will be back on the ice at the Forum on Friday when they face StFX, while the Panthers will be back home on Friday to take on Acadia.