The Halifax Mooseheads came out victorious in their first preseason game of the season, taking down the Saint John Sea Dogs 5-4 in overtime in the Moncton Rookie Challenge opener for both teams.
The Mooseheads earned the win when fourth overall draft pick Xavier Parent sped down the right side with the puck from his own end to set up fellow first round pick Justin Barron on the two-on-one who made no mistake just 31 seconds into the extra period completing the Halifax rally.
The goal was Barron’s second of the game in his very first outing in a Mooseheads uniform. Saint John had jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first period as they outplayed Halifax in the opening 20 minutes before the Herd bounced back to tie the contest 2-2 on second period goals by Kyle Petten and Patty Kyte. The middle stanza was a strong one for the Mooseheads who outshot the Sea Dogs 10-8. Jeremie Jacob found the net at 12:18 beating Halifax goalie Maxime Emery to give the Dogs the lead once again but it would be for the final time in the game.
The Mooseheads tied the game on Justin Barron’s first of the night on a wrist shot from the point on the power play just 5:55 into the final stanza. Sophomore player Caleb Rich put the Herd in front 4-3 when he drove to the net and beat losing goalie Andrew MacLeod with 5:11 left in regulation. It appeared Halifax had the victory in their grasp until Kevin Mason scored with only 39.8 seconds on the clock to tie the game 4-4 and forced overtime.
The 1-2 punch of Halifax’s top two draft picks connected early during the three-on-three and the Mooseheads youngsters poured off the bench in celebration.
Halifax will battle the Acadie-Bathurst Titan (1-0) on Saturday afternoon at 1pm. A victory would put the Mooseheads in Sunday’s Championship game. Click here to watch live.