SYDNEY- In a season full of a hard fought victories and defeats, the Screaming Eagles would rally one more time before being put away by the Charlottetown Islanders. The Islanders established and relinquished a two goal lead but came up with a 5-2 victory to complete the second round sweep of the Screaming Eagles.
After the first three games of the series featured just one goal in the opening frame, game four’s first period was relatively high scoring and it began with the Islanders taking a lead just 3:23 into the action. Chris Chaddock circled the net and completed a wrap around to beat Kyle Jessiman, just putting the puck inside the post and putting the visitors up 1-0. Just over five minutes later, Charlottetown would double the lead as Alex Dostie flew up the right wing, cut in past Ross MacDougall, and put it by the Cape Breton netminder.
Just as they did in game three, however, Cape Breton would push back, beginning with Declan Smith. Charlottetown had the opportunity to further push the advantage with Yannik Bertrand in the box, but the Eagles established some momentum and denied the Islanders quality opportunities. Smith would earn a short handed breakway and beat Mark Grametbauer to get the Eagles on the board before the break.
Smith would earn his second point of the night as the Eagles tied the game at the 7:50 mark of the second period. A pass from behind the Charlottetown goal made its way through Bertrand and ended up on the stick of Ty Fournier to tie the game. Unfortunately for the home side the tie game would not last until period’s end as Filip Chlapik found himself on the right side of the net to bang away at a rebound and put the Islanders ahead 3-2.
Charlottetown would pull ahead early in the third period as Pascal Aquin fought through three Screaming Eagles players on a direct path to the goal and slipped it by Jessiman. It seemed to shift all the momentum the way of the Islanders. Cape Breton would earn two power plays in the third period but couldn’t take advantage. In the final four minutes, Daniel Sprong would score for the fourth straight game of the series to salt the game and series away for Charlottetown.
Both teams made several adjustments to the lineup as a result of suspensions and injuries. Forwards Cape Breton’s Tyler Hylland and Charlottetown’s Matthew Grouchy were given one game bans were a staged fight in game three. Charlottetown forward Adam Marsh was suspended for three games for a pair of hits in game three, and both forward Mathias Laferrière and defenseman Adam McCormick were injured as a result of hits by Marsh. Isles forward François Beauchemin served the second game of his two game suspension as well.
Cape Breton called up defenseman Ryan MacLellan for Thursday’s game four. MacLellan registered one shot goal in his QMJHL playoff debut. For Charlottetown, forward Sam King and defenseman Jean-Sébastien Taillefer drew into the lineup for their first action of the series. With the elimination of the Screaming Eagles on the Thursday it marked the end of the major junior careers of 20 year olds Olivier LeBlanc, Massimo Carozza, and Giovanni Fiore.
Mark Grametbauer picked up the win in goal for Charlottetown, stopping 38 of 40 shots. Jessiman allowed five goals on 27 shots in the loss.
As six teams remain in the QMJHL’s post-season, the Screaming Eagles will now turn their attention to the QMJHL entry draft on June 3rd in Saint John. Cape Breton currently holds two selections in the first round, at picks #14 & #15.
1. Mark Grametbauer (Charlottetown) 38 saves on 40 shots
2. Declan Smith (Cape Breton) 1 goal, 1 assist
3. Filip Chlapik (Charlottetown) 1 goal, 1 assist, 5 shots
Scratches For Cape Breton: Mathias Laferrière (injury), Adam McCormick (injury), Tyler Hylland (suspension)
Scratches For Charlottetown: Hunter Drew, Matthew Grouchy (supsension), Adam Marsh (suspension), François Beauchemin (suspension)
Final Shots On Goal: 40-27 in favour of Cape Breton
Cape Breton Power Play: 0/7
Charlottetown Power Play: 0/3