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December 31, 2012,
SAINT JOHN – The Saint John Sea Dogs and Moncton Wildcats met on New Year’s Eve at Harbour Station in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action Monday night. The Sea Dogs came out on top with a 3-1 decision in front of 5,330 fans.
Noah Zilbert scored all three Sea Dogs goals and Oliver Cooper and Spencer Smallman had two helpers each. Sebastien Auger made 48 saves on 49 shots in the win as the Sea Dogs climbed to 17-20-0-0.
Yannick Veilleux responded for Moncton as Cole Holowenko stopped 19 of 21 shots in the loss. The Wildcats fell to 23-14-1-1.
Moncton made it 1-0 with a power play marker from Veilleux at 6:33 of the first, which would be their only goal of the game.
Auger kept the Dogs in the period with a flurry of saves at the 11-minute mark and those saves paid off. Zilbert tied the game up at 10:40 with his first of the game. An initial 2-on-1 with Cooper resulted in a great chance going off the heel of Cooper’s stick. Zilbert grabbed the puck off the boards, wrapped around the net and buried it.
His second of the game came at 14:08 on a couple of brilliant moves to get in front of Holowenko and slide it five-hole. Cooper grabbed his second helper of the game and Smallman notched the second assist for his first career QMJHL point.
Shots in the first were 18-6 for Moncton, but the Sea Dogs held th3 2-1 edge on the scoreboard.
Auger stood tall once again as the Sea Dogs were outshot 9-1 in the first nine minutes of the second period.
Holowenko got in on the action, robbing Anderson after a turnover left him high and dry behind the net, but he got enough of his stick to just keep the puck out of the net.
Shots in the second were 16-8 for Moncton.
Auger again made an incredible save, this time stopping the puck without his stick and with Aidan Kelly behind him in the net just after the 11-minute mark of the third.
Zilbert completed the natural hat-trick with an empty-net goal after having his initial try blocked by a defender. The goal was his fifth of the year and was unselfishly set up by Smallman for his second assist of the game.
The Sea Dogs also claimed another two points in the Rivlary Cup standings with a crowd of over 5,000.
The boys in blue ring in the new year with a contest in Halifax against the Mooseheads on Jan. 4 at 7 p.m. Tim Roszell will have the call on News 88.9 FM and fans can catch the away action by tuning into the TELUS QMJHL Webcast.
The Sea Dogs return home Saturday to face off against the Prince Edward Island Rocket at 7 p.m. Tickets are available at the Harbour Station box office, online at tickets.harbourstation.ca or by calling 657-1234.
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