The Tigers dug deep tonight in Edmundston to nail down a 4-2 win and tie the series at a game apiece.
Just as they had done in game one at home on Friday, Campbellton jumped out to a lead in the first, this time on a goal by Dylan Coffey. With the Tigers pressing the Blizzard in their defensive zone, Dawson Stairs stole the puck in the slot and just missed the top corner with a hard wrister. He then out-battled a defender in the corner and moved the puck down to the end boards from where Jared Janke quickly directed it to the front of the net. There, Coffey controlled it enough to backhand it through the five hole to put Campbellton on top.
The Tigers extended their lead at the 7:40 mark in the middle frame with the play starting deep in the Tigers’ zone. Francis Thibeault passed up ice to Matt Warner who, after crossing the blue line, slid the puck over to Joel Walker on the right side. Quickly he moved it back to the center to Zach Spencer who was hustling through the slot. As he approached the net, Spencer backhanded a shot off Francis Asselin’s right pad and right to Warner who popped the juicy rebound into the open half of the net. However, about nine minutes later, the Blizzard finally got one past Tristan Gray to send the teams to the second intermission with the Tigers up by only one.
When Vanier opened the third period scoring to tie the game, Blizzard fans were hoping for a repeat of the comeback win their team had manufactured in game one in Campbellton on Friday. However, those wishes were dashed when the Tigers responded with two unanswered tallies in the second half of the period. Just past the twelve minute mark, Janke won the faceoff in the Blizzard’s zone. Petten swept up the puck, headed directly to the top of the circle and drove a low shot under Francis Asselin’s glove. The play took no more than a couple of seconds but it turned out to be the game winner. About three minutes later, insurance came off the stick of Pierre-Luc Lurette. From the circle to the left of Asselin, Pascal Valcourt won the draw back to Coleton Perry who redirected the puck right to Lurette on the point. When all the Edmundston defenders, perhaps concerned with the Tiger forwards near the net, backed away from Lurette, he moved in slightly and blasted a low screamer which dented the mesh before the goalie could react. After that, despite their desperate attempts to wipe out their deficit in the remaining four and a half minutes, the Blizzard could get nothing more past Gray who made thirty saves in the game for the win. For their fine efforts, janke was named second game star while Petten was first, Samuel LeBlanc of the Blizzard was third star.
The series resumes Tuesday evening at the Memorial Civic Center at 7:00 pm. Tickets are available at the Civic Center box office between 8:00 am and 8:00 pm.