Morand nets hat trick as Titan double up Phoenix 6-3 for eighth-straight win
Antoine Morand recorded his second career QMJHL hat trick and Daniil Miromanov had a milestone afternoon as the Acadie-Bathurst Titan exploded for four goals in the third period to down the Sherbrooke Phoenix six-to-three for their eighth win in-a-row Sunday afternoon in front of 2,740 fans at the K.C. Irving Regional Centre.
Zachary Malatesta opened the scoring with 9:28 remaining in the first period on a rebound, netting his tenth of the season off the initial shots from Miromanov and Kynan Berger. Julien Pelletier would even things up for the Phoenix late in the period sending the game tied 1-1 after 20 minutes of play.
Vladimir Kuznetsov scored the only goal of the second period, his 27th of the season as the Titan’s second power play of the game expired at the 4:28 mark. Assists on the go-ahead goal came from Miromanov and Rodrigo Abols, giving the Titan a one-goal lead after two periods.
Morand gave the Titan a two-goal lead just 74 seconds into the third period, accepting a perfect pass through the crease from Jordan Maher for his 22nd goal on the year. Jeffrey Viel also picked up an assist on the play. The Phoenix answered back with two quick goals of their own from Marek Zachar and Evan MacKinnon, but at the 5:45 mark of the third period, Morand would put the Titan ahead for good with his second of the game and 23rd of the season off a pass from Miromanov on a play set up by Samuel L’Italien. With the Titan short-handed, the Phoenix pulled goaltender Evan Fitzpatrick for a sixth attacker only to see Kynan Berger fire a clearing pass off the side boards and watch it slide into the empty net, narrowly missing the inside post for his fifth of the year. Morand would complete the hat-trick with just 44 seconds left in regulation on a two-on-one rush with Viel for his 24th goal of the season. Malatesta picked up an assist on the play to give the Titan the 6-3 victory.
Anthony Dumont-Bouchard won his sixth consecutive start in net for the Titan stopping 33 of 36 shots to improve his record to 18-8 on the year. Fitzpatrick allowed four goals on 34 shots to see his record fall to 15-27.
Vladimir Kuznetsov continued his scoring tear on Sunday, scoring a goal in his sixth-straight game. During his run, he has scored 10 goals while adding two assists and maintaining a plus-12 rating.
Antoine Morand extended his point streak to five games with his hat trick on Sunday, giving him four goals and eight assists in that span.
Defenceman Zachary Malatesta played in his 25th game since joining the Titan during the recent trade period. In his first 25 games of the season with the Moncton Wildcats, Malatesta scored three times while adding eight assists and recording a minus-two rating. Since joining the Titan, he as scored seven goals, added 15 assists and maintains a plus-24 rating. His combined statistics this season has given Zachary his best season on the score sheet. His previous high was 29 points during the 2014-2015 season.
Russian Forward Daniil Miromanov recorded his 100th point in the QMJHL with his three-point performance on Sunday. The milestone was achieved when assisting on the Titan’s fourth goal of the game. Sunday also marked Miromanov’s second three-assist game inside of a week.
90s NIGHT IS UPON US
The Titan are back on home ice this Saturday night, March 4, 2017 at 7:00pm when they host the Rimouski Océanic who will look to extract revenge for a 5-0 shutout loss at the hands of the Titan back in December. The evening’s playlist will have a complete 90’s feel from the moment the team takes to the ice until the final buzzer. In addition, our friends at Events Bathurst-Chaleur and CKLE 92.9 FM will be on-hand to join in the festivities. Not to mention that the Ace of Spaces has once again avoided capture and the evening’s jackpot is estimated to be $40,000! On Sunday, March 5th the Titan will host the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada with a 3:00pm start time. Tickets are being offered for both games at a special rate of $25.00. Additional pricing information can be obtained by calling the K.C. Irving Regional Centre box office at 549-3200 (local) or 1-877-549-3200 (toll free). Standard individual tickets are also available at the box office, by phone and online at admission.com.
Written by Bryan Willett