Game recap by Kirk Jessome
(Halifax, NS) – In their second game in as many nights, the Dalhousie Tigers hosted the Saint Mary's Huskies on Saturday. An explosive second period led to the Huskies taking a 6-2 win over the Tigers.
After a strong offensive start leading to a power play opportunity for the Tigers, it was actually the Huskies who were able to capitalize during their penalty kill. As the Tigers came out of their own zone, a risky drop-pass was picked off by Joel Bishop (St. John's, NL) who broke into the zone on a partial break. Bishop sent a tough angle shot toward the goal that was kicked away, but back into the slot for Keith Getson (Bridgewater, NS) to tap into the open net to open the scoring.
On a power play chance of their own, the Huskies looked like they found another one as a hard shot from the boards rung off the post and into the air, took a few bounces and ended up in the back of the net over Connor Hicks (Kanata, ON), but was immediately waved off as a hand pass.
The Tigers were able to find a few solid chances in a late power play with Dillon Boucher (Head Chezzetcook, NS) firing some tough shots toward the goal from the high slot, but Eric Brassard (St. Hubert, QC) stood tall on each one.
At the end of the first, the lone goal coming from short-handed Huskies gave them a 1-0 lead.
The Huskies were able to open the second period with a quick goal as Getson earned his second point of the night on a nice pass from the slot across to Mitchell Balmas (Sydney, NS) who took a tight-angle shot that snuck just under the arm of Hicks and inside the post to make it 2-0.
Just over two minutes later, the Getson-line struck again as Austyn Hardie (Halifax, NS) sent a beautiful pass through center-ice to spring Anthony Repaci (Toronto, ON) on a breakaway. Repaci broke into the attack zone and sent a quick wrist shot to the glove-side of Hicks that gave the goaltender no chance, and the Huskies jumped ahead 3-0.
As the Tigers were given another power play chance and needed to find a timely goal, they were able to put all kinds of traffic toward the net, causing a scramble in front of Brassard, but after a few swings at the puck by Jonathan Cyr (Ottawa, ON), Brassard was able to pounce on the puck and end the chance.
Just seconds later as the power play expired, the Tigers broke out of their own zone and Boucher sent a beautiful cross-ice pass along the blue-line to Jesse Lussier (Ottawa, ON) who sent a hard slap shot at Brassard. The shot was stopped but a juicy rebound bounced back into the slot for Campbell Pickard (Halifax, NS) who snapped it over the pad of the Huskies goalie and gave the Tigers their first goal of the game.
Late in the period, the Tigers were able to find an unlikely goal as Jonathan Cyr flipped a high dump-in from center-ice that dropped toward Brassard and hit him in the mask, took a bounce over his shoulder and into the back of the net as the Tigers picked up a lucky one to make it 3-2.
With just one minute remaining in the period, a tough bounce for the Tigers on a breakout left Stephen Johnson (Moncton, NB) all alone to snap a quick shot from the top of the crease to beat Hicks and put his team back up by two going into the third period.
The Tigers were able to open the period with a few good stretches of attacking play, but an unfortunate clearing attempt saw them end up on the wrong side of a nearly two minute stretch of 5-on-3 play. The Huskies got a great chance from a one-timer from Dylan DiPerna (Nobleton, ON) that rang off the bar, but the Tigers did a great job of blocking shots and killing off both penalties.
On yet another power play chance where Hicks made two tough saves but couldn't control the rebounds as the puck bounced into the slot for Johnson to send a great backhand pass to the faceoff dot for Balmas to send home his second goal of the game to make it 5-2.
The Huskies found their sixth goal of the game as Repaci came into the zone and sent a soft backhand on goal that was deflected away, but Mark Trickett (Baddeck, NS) was trailing in the right spot to clean up the rebound.
And as the final whistle blew, the Huskies came away with the 6-2 victory on the back of a two-goal game from the Subway Player of the Game, Mitchell Balmas.
The Tigers will be back on the ice next Friday when they travel to take on Moncton. Saint Mary's will look to make it four in a row on Wednesday against Acadia.