Maine Hockey Journal

Maineiacs bury Cape Breton, 6-0

Lewiston, ME – Saturday night was not one that the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles will likely care to remember for a number of reasons, which would include dropping a 5-0 decision to the Lewiston Maineiacs in front of 1,988 at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee.

Cape Breton was beaten, shutout in fact. They were beaten up — arguably dropping the decision in each of the four fights Lewiston engaged them in.

They were late due to inclement traveling conditions and the game was pushed back a half an hour because of it. When the bus carrying the team finally arrived it got stuck in the snow and while being towed out, an avalanche of snow fell from atop the Androscoggin Bank Colisee and buried it. Perhaps, it was a premonition of what was to come once the Screaming Eagles were inside.

Alas, it was an accomplishment in itself to just get to Lewiston.

“Today it was a six hour drive to come here,” said Cape Breton Head Coach Eric Veilleux whose young team was playing their third game in as many nights, “It’s not easy.”

Not to be lost in all of the extracurricular difficulties is the Lewiston team that didn’t allow themselves to lose focus despite the change in game time, nor the fact that Cape Breton sat in last place in the Maritimes Division coming into the night’s action.

Andrey Makarov was brilliant when he needed to be for the Maineiacs as he had a number of brilliant glove saves to protect the netting behind him. The Russian goaltender would make 27 saves on the night to earn his second shutout of the season.

“He played awesome and made some big saves,” said Lewiston Head Coach J.F. Houle about Makarov, “He was really good with the glove, and was tracking the puck well. He is confident and playing real well right now. I’m happy for him because he had a real tough start but now he has really come around.”

The Maineiacs jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the most peculiar way on just their second shot of the game at 10:08 of the first period. Pierre-Olivier Morin took the puck down the left side of the Cape Breton goal and gave a centering feed intended for Antoine-Houde Caron. The feed was deflected by the stick of goaltender Alexandre Veronneau and went straight up into the air and off of his own defenseman. The puck deflected back off Veronneau’s shoulder and trickled down his back to the ice. Caron stayed with the puck and stuffed it away for his 13th goal of the season.

Kirill Kabanov extended the Lewiston lead to 2-0 with a beautiful redirect on a one-timer shot from Sam Carrier at 13:36.

The Maineiacs struck again at 8:13 of the second period to take a 3-0 lead when Cole Hawes scored his ninth goal of the season scoring off a rebound created by Jess Tanguy.

Eight seconds following Hawes’ goal, tension began to boil over and a fight between Loic Leduc and Bryce Milson—who stands five inches shorter than Leduc at 5’11. The bout ignited an eight-minute span in which there would be three separate fights.

Twice at 8:29, the referees had difficulties maintaining diplomacy as they tried to drop the puck in the Cape Breton defensive end. First, it was Wes Herrett and Ian Saab who dropped the gloves; with Saab earning a game misconduct for offering to trade blows with the entire Screaming Eagles bench following his emphatic win over Herrett.

The anarchy would ensue shortly after as Jean Kristoff Grenier and Antoine Houde-Caron exchanged more than pleasantries the millisecond the puck hit the ice.

The fun for Maineiacs fans would continue with a goal from Etienne Brodeur thanks to yet another juicy rebound off the pads of Veronneau at 8:51. The goal meant those in attendance witnessed three fights and two goals in a 38 second span.

“I like that we scored right after the fights. Our guys that are supposed to score came up and scored big goals after a couple of fights and that’s always a plus,” said Houle.

A fight at 10:56 between William Carrier and Christophe Lalonde would cap off the second period’s excitement and send Cape Breton’s Carrier to the showers early with a game misconduct and leave a 4-0 deficit on the ice for his team to face.

Michael Chaput and Francis Beauvillier each scored in the third period to help lift the Maineiacs to the 5-0 victory.

“I thought it was a good team win tonight,” said Houle, “They answered the bell. [Cape Breton] tried to push us around, but we’ve proven in a lot of games now that nobody is going to push us around. Even our small guys can go and that shows good team character.”

When all the laundry was sorted out there was a total of 80 penalty minutes. Cape Breton was responsible for 38 of those minutes with 17 infractions, while Lewiston had 15 infractions.

Despite having six and eight power plays respectively, neither Cape Breton nor Lewiston scored with the man-advantage.

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