SYDNEY - This time it was the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles’ turn.
© TC Media - Cape Breton Post
Timothé Simard of the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles, left, pressures Danny Moynihan of the Halifax Mooseheads during Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action Sunday at Centre 200.
Coming off a third period meltdown that led to an embarrassing 5-3 loss at the hands of the Halifax Mooseheads the night before, the Screaming Eagles exacted pay back in full with a 5-4 come from behind victory at home on Sunday evening.
After the Herd battled back from two one-goal deficits to take a 3-2 lead into the final frame, a refocused Cape Breton squad responded with three straight goals, capped by Clark Bishop’s second of the night, a shorthanded tally, to take the lead for good in front of 3,531 fans at Centre 200.
Apart from the opening half of the final frame, Mooseheads head coach Dominique Ducharme was largely pleased with what he saw.
“I thought we played well for 50 minutes,” said Ducharme. “The first 10 minutes of the third we slowed down. We were not skating as much and applying pressure and putting pressure on them, and they took advantage of that.
“But we never quit. We had a goal to get within one and we had a lot of chances to tie it, but we couldn’t finish it off.”
The Mooseheads responded with a power-play marker with 5:45 remaining in regulation time, but that’s as close as they would come.
Already playing with a depleted lineup, the Mooseheads lost defenceman Jesse Lussier in the second period after absorbing a hit from Cameron Darcy, who was slapped with a five minute major on the play. Lussier’s scheduled to be reevaluated on Monday.
The Mooseheads, who head into the new year with a record of 24-15-0-1, having lost five of their last six games, are already without seven regulars, two of which are suiting up with Canada at the world juniors, while the others are nursing injuries.
But in those key absences, the Mooseheads have gotten some help from unexpected sources, like rookie Andrew Shewfelt, who notching a pair of goals and an assist in Sunday’s loss, giving the Dartmouth six points in his last five games.
For the second straight night rookie Vincent Watt and Mackenzie Weegar each tallied once to round out the scoring for the Herd.
“We battled hard in the last two nights but our goal is to always get better,” said Ducharme. “We want to be playing complete games no matter who’s in the lineup.
After a season of ups and downs thus far, Ducharme said he believes the adversity his team has faced will serve it well.
“We’ve been through a lot, but I think it’s been a good way to prepare for the second half. We’ve been improving and that’s what we’re looking for with the young guys individually and collectively we’re moving forward.”
Kyle Ferrell, Charles-Eric Legare and Jeremy Beaudry had the other goals for Cape Breton.
- by Andrew Rankin - Metro Halifax