CHARLOTTETOWN- The Screaming Eagles built a three goal lead through forty minutes en route to snapping a losing streak in a 4-2 victory over the Charlottetown Islanders.
Charlottetown outshot Cape Breton 15-4 in the opening frame but it was the Eagles who would emerge with the lead thanks to a nifty individual effort from Phélix Martineau. He dangled up the right side of the ice, around Taylor Egan and by the goaltender Matthew Welsh to make it 1-0 at the 14:05 mark.
Cape Breton’s penalty kill was a big story in the game, as Charlottetown would earn the first five power plays of the game. Mathias Laferrière would be sent off for holding at the 7:46 mark in the middle period for a sixth straight penalty against Cape Breton, but this power play wouldn’t last long as 28 seconds later both Pierre-Olivier Joseph and Samuel Meisenheimer were sent off, putting the Eagles on their first man advantage of the night and setting off an even greater parade to the penalty box in the middle stanza.
Martineau would find his second goal of the game with the Eagles up a man, blasting a one timer past Welsh just before the halfway mark of the period. As the penalties continued and the teams played four on four, Ross MacDougall added to the Screaming Eagle lead, blasting a shot from the top of the right circle through an Egor Sokolov screen.
It was also four on four when the Islanders thought they had gotten on the board later in the middle stanza. A passing play resulted in Pascal Aquin putting it by Kevin Mandolese from the lip of the crease but the call was overturned due to an offside, and the Eagles took a 3-0 lead into the final frame.
The Isles would get on the board for real in the opening two minutes of the following period, as Matthew Grouchy circled the net and found defenseman Olivier Desjardins sneaking into the play and he would put it over Mandolese. Things would tighten up further when with just under six minutes remaining, Keith Getson would bang in a puck short handed to cut the lead to a one goal margin.
Islanders coach Jim Hulton pulled his goaltender early, with over two minutes remaining. But his club could not gain any sustained entry and Leon Gawanke would hit a shot from almost the full length of the ice, his first goal of the season coming into the empty net.
Mandolese shone in the win, stopping 34 of 36. Welsh allowed three goals on 20 shots in addition to the empty netter.
Wednesday’s game marked the debut of Ian Smallwood, whom the Eagles acquired from the Quebec Remparts on Tuesday. The 18 year old defenseman was +1 and did receive some play play time.
The two teams will face off again Friday night at the Nest as it’s the annual Remembrance Day game at Centre 200. Puck drop is 7 PM. Tickets can be purchased at the Centre 200 box office, by phone at 902-564-2200 or online at https://tickets.capebreton.ca/Online/default.asp
THREE STARS OF THE GAME
1. Phélix Martineau (Cape Breton) 2 shots, 4 shots
2. Keith Getson (Charlottetown) 1 goal, 3 shots
3. Kevin Mandolese (Cape Breton) 34 saves on 36 shots
Scratches For Cape Breton: Kyle McGrath (collarbone), Justin Lazure, Gabriel Proulx, Noah Laaouan (Under 17s)
Scratches For Charlottetown: Noah Massie, Marcel Berube
Final Shots On Goal: 36-21 in favour of Charlottetown
Cape Breton Power Play: 1/6
Charlottetown Power Play: 0/8