Tigers Notch OT Win

A determined Rapids team did all they could to frustrate the Tigers by coming back four times to force extra time but Pierre-Luc Lurette’s heroics ended their hopes of a comeback just over a minute into the OT.  Throughout most of the game the Tigers’ speed kept Grand Falls scrambling to help their goalie, Nolan Boyd, fend off the persistent offensive attack by Campbellton. The first Tiger goal came off the stick of Charles William Gagné who was in perfect position to backhand home a shot from six feet in front of the net. The hard digging and the pressure applied by Maxime Charest and Mitch Britton earned them assists on the play. Before the end of the period the Rapids mounted their first comeback and the teams headed into the first intermission tied at one each.

Lurette ended that deadlock quickly in the second with Campbellton on the powerplay. The Tigers controlled the puck in the Rapids’ zone passing at will and Tommy Callaghan slid a pass back to Pier-Olivier Michaud at the point who then set up Lurette for a hard blast which found the top corner. Grand Falls scratched their way back a couple of minutes later but that did not deter the Tigers from continuing to press offensively. Again with the puck deep in the Rapid’s end, the Tigers continued to force the defenders to stave off chance after chance. After Logan Kelly-Murphy dumped the puck into the slot and Pascal Valcourt tied up a defender,  Coleton Perry gained control of the puck in the right circle and fired a hard wrist shot past the goalie’s blocker to restore the lead for Campbellton once again. Before the end of the second, Campbellton doubled their lead on a fine shorthanded effort.  Zach Spencer won the draw to the left of Gray and Michaud took it behind the net and slipped it up to Walker. With the defenceman pinching, Walker chipped the puck up the boards and moved up to carry it into the Rapid’s end. In the meantime, Spencer had sped into the play, drawing the attention of the lone defenseman. With an open path to the net, Walker blistered a hard wristshot past the goalie’s blocker to give the Tigers a two goal lead.

In the third the Rapids made the most of their chances, scored a pair to once again erase the deficit and brought their fans back into the game. However, Campbellton responded again to grab the lead on a powerplay. Jared Janke, after winning the face-off, got the puck back at the top of the circle from where he set up Lurette for a one-timer. Lurette’s shot was stopped by Boyd but Walker was there to bang in the rebound. Just when it looked like the Tigers had it wrapped up,  after pulling their goalie,  Grand Falls managed to get another past Gray which sent the game into extra time.

In the OT. Gray stood his ground on the one chance that the Rapids could create but after that the puck stayed on Tiger sticks until Lurette  circled twice, broke in to Rapids’ territory and backhanded a shot into the net for the game winner.

Joel Walker was named the game’s first star while Lurette got the nod for third star. Tristan Gray backstopped the team for the win.