Moncton defeats UNB 5-2 in men's hockey

Moncton defeats UNB 5-2 in men's hockey
FREDERICTON – Saturday evening the visiting Université de Moncton scored on their first shot of the game and never looked book as they defeated the University of New Brunswick men’s hockey team 5-2 in front of 2209 fans at the Aitken University Centre. Defenceman Simon Jodoin had two goals, including the game winner, plus an assist while forward Eric Faille had a goal and two assists for les Aigles Bleus.

The Varsity Reds had the early pressure, but when the puck skipped over rookie defenceman Adrian Robertson’s stick at the Moncton blue line, Kevin Charland (Victoriaville, QC) took off on a breakaway and had the time and space to deke Travis Fullerton and put the puck through the five-hole at 2:21. Seven minutes later UNB tied the game, seconds after their power play expired, when Bryce Swan, playing in first official game for the V-Reds since transferring from StFX, was all alone at the back door and had the easy tap-in goal after a nice pass from fellow transfer student Colby Pridham. Rookie netminder Adrien Lemay (Moncton, NB), getting his first start in nets for UdeM, had no chance on the goal.

Later in the period both teams had a player in the penalty box when Francis Rochon (Gatineau, QC) used his speed to get past the UNB defence on the rush and redirect a Eric Faille pass into the corner of the net at 14:18. UNB took another penalty soon after, and Moncton was enjoying a five-on-three power play at 15:21 when Simon Jodoin (St.-Hyacinthe, QC) one-timed the pass from fifth-year forward Guillaume Parenteau (Boucerville, QC) past Fullerton and just inside the far post. UdeM was up 3-1 after one period despite being edged 10-9 in shots.

UNB came out with a solid push to start the second period, and were eventually rewarded when speedy Antoine Houde-Caron was allowed to skate behind the Moncton net with the puck and beat Lemay in a race to the far post as he scored on the wraparound at 4:48. Moncton restored their two-goal lead at 16:39 when Jodoin and Faille were on an odd-man rush and Jodoin redirected the puck perfectly past Fullerton. Shots were an even 7 apiece in the second period.
The third period saw UNB push, but UdeM didn’t break. Worse for the home team, they continued to take costly penalties. Matt Fillier was in the box for a high hit on Alex Noël (Dieppe, NB) when Faille raced down the right side of the ice, sidestepped d-man Robertson along the wall at the UNB blue line, and then got past big Josh Kidd before scoring on Fullerton at 10:14 to effectively end V-Reds hopes of a comeback.

The final score was 5-2 for Moncton. UNB outshot UdeM 26-23 in the game. Les Aigles Bleus were 2-for-6 on the power play while were 0-for-6 with the man advantage.

Outside the rowdy Moncton dressing room, Moncton head coach Serge Bourgeois was happy with his team’s performance. “I thought we played a lot in their zone, and any time you can do that, it takes away their scoring opportunities. I thought we did a real good job of playing down under their goal line. I think our speed cost them a couple of penalties. And we killed some big penalties. Our penalty kill was terrific and I thought our goaltending was very good.”

Across the ice it was painfully quiet outside the UNB room. V-Reds head coach Gardiner MacDougall stated to the media scrum that his team had to be better in all facets of the game, particularly special teams. As well he said, “We’ve got to be a hungrier hockey club. Tonight we didn’t have enough hunger, enough desire to win the second pucks. There’s lessons to learn. These are opportunities to capitalize. Tonight, the best players on the ice weren’t wearing white. In our rink, the best players have to wear white.”

Game Notes: The three game stars were 1. Simon Jodoin 2. Eric Faille 3. Antoine Houde-Caron. The Varsity Reds are on the road next two weekends. Friday they are at Saint Mary’s in Halifax and then StFX in Antigonish on Saturday. The following weekend they are at Acadia and Dalhousie.