Maine Hockey Journal

Late goal by Wildcats sink the Maineiacs, 4-3

The Lewiston Maineiacs saw their brief, three-game winning, streak come to an end with a 4-3 road loss to the Moncton Wildcats in front of 4,369 at the Moncton Coliseum on Thursday night.

Lewiston tried to battle back from two-goal deficits twice, and was able to equalize with Moncton with just less than 10 minutes left. However, Allain Saulnier scored the game-winner for the Wildcats with 27 seconds remaining in the period.

It was Saulnier who put the first Wildcats goal past Lewiston starter Nicholas Champion on an assist from his brother Alex Saulnier for the early 1-0 lead.

Later in the first, Alex MacDonald scored his fourth goal of the season with a power play goal at 7:22 to give Moncton a 2-0 lead.

Lewiston would cut the deficit in half about six minutes later when Stefan Fournier scored his 10th goal of the season, thanks to assists from Antoine Houde-Caron and Olivier Dame-Malka.

In the second, Moncton would strike yet again on the power play to extend their lead back to two goals at 3-1. This time, it was Marek Hrivik who beat Champion for his 15th goal of the year at the 4:58 mark of the second period.

Lewiston would strike twice within 26 seconds in the second period to equalize the score a 3-3. First. Pierre-Olivier Morin and the Lewiston power play would find an answer to Hrivik’s tally at 9:42 to draw back within one, at 3-2.

At 10:08, Samuel Henley struck the back of the net with his seventh goal of the season to even the score.

The new energy for Lewiston would be short-lived, as Saulnier’s second goal of the game with just 27 seconds remaining in the second would prove to be the difference maker.

Lewiston came out swinging in the third, outshooting Moncton 17-3, but Wildcat netminder Shane Owen was up to the task as he was all night.

Owen was huge for Moncton, as he made 40 saves on 43 shots in the winning effort. At the other end of the rink, Champion made 16 saves on 20 shots.

NOTES: Maineiacs forward Kirill Kabanov returned to the home of his former team for the first time since being traded from the Wildcats to Lewiston back on Oct. 28. He was scoreless with a minus-1 rating on the night.

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