CHARLOTTETOWN- Not many road teams have been able to have success at the Eastlink Centre in PEI, but the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles have been comfortable there this year.
Giovanni Fiore extended his goal scoring streak to seven games with the overtime winner, extending his team’s winning streak to the same seven games. Fiore’s goal gave the Eagles a 4-3 victory and put Cape Breton one point behind Charlottetown in the standings.
It was another action packed game between two rivals from opposite islands, a rematch from last night when Cape Breton won 4-2. This time it was the home team that got off to a quick start. François Beauchemin, recently acquired from Val-d’Or, opened the scoring just 1:53 into the contest on a wraparound goal. Then before the five minute mark, the Islanders would double their advantage when Adam Marsh, who came over in the same trade as Beauchemin, connected on the power play.
At this point the Eagles were looking to get to the dressing room, down 2-0 and being outshot 23-6 after 17 minutes of play. But Ty Fournier would produce a key momentum shifting goal with 29 seconds left in the opening frame. Fournier came up the left wing and swung back towards the crease. Islanders netminder Matthew Welsh extended his pad to make the stop, but Fournier’s skating motion saw his skate connect with the puck which would sneak under Welsh’s wicket. After a somewhat lengthy review it was determined that there was no kicking motion and the Eagles had a key goal heading to the break.
Cape Breton outshot Charlottetown in the second frame, 15-14. Despite plenty of chances on both sides the only goal would come in the early stages- just 1:11 in when Phélix Martineau tipped a point shot from Alexis Sansfaçon to tie the game at 2. Both teams would score in the final period but it was once again a twenty minutes where the netminders would star.
The duo acquired from Val-d’Or would factor into the game’s next goal as Beauchemin rang a shot that looked to beat Mandoelese but hit the iron. The puck bounced out in front of the goal and Adam Marsh was there to snipe it through the Cape Breton netminder to make the score 3-2. Once again, though, Fournier was there to provide a spark to get his team back into the game.
Fournier would intercept a cross-ice pass from Saku Vesterinen and zip through the neutral zone on a breakaway. He outdeked Welsh, keeping the puck low along the ice and beating him on the left glove side. Through 60 minutes, it was a tie game.
After a wide open regulation that saw both clubs generate several chances, the overtime period was at times tentative with neither team wanting to risk making a bad change. It was a player that was stuck on the ice for over a minute, though, Fiore, that would make the difference. Massimo Carozza waited at the right side of the blueline and found Fiore streaking out to the front of the goal. Carozza hit Fiore with a pass, who then flipped it over the shoulder of Welsh to secure the victory.
Mandolese picked up the victory with 54 saves. Welsh stopped 37 shots in the loss.
Once again Cape Breton dressed 17 skaters as newly acquired skaters Ross MacDougall and Mathias Laferrière have yet to join the team but will skate for the Eagles in the second half. MacDougall is expected to play Sunday afternoon.
The game Sunday will take place at 3 PM as Cape Breton concludes its road trip in Bathurst, taking on the Titan. You can hear all the action on 1270 AM CJCB or online at http://www.cjcbradio.com
1. Kevin Mandolese (Cape Breton) 54 saves on 57 shots
2. François Beauchemin (Charlottetown) 1 goal, 1 assist, 7 shots
3. Adam Marsh (Charlottetown) 2 goals, +2, 4 shots
Scratches For Cape Breton: Tyler Hylland (upper body injury), Ross MacDougall (transportation), Mathias Laferrière (transportation)
Scratches For Charlottetown: Tyler McArthur, Hunter Drew, Johnny Foley (injury), Ian McKinnon, Chris Chaddock (injury), Gregor MacLeod
Final Shots On Goal: 57-41 in favour of Charlottetown
Cape Breton Power Play: 1/4
Charlottetown Power Play: 1/3