The Acadie-Bathurst Titan crushed the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada by a seven-to-two score Wednesday night at the K.C. Irving Regional Centre in Bathurst, NB to take a commanding 3-1 lead in their best-of-seven quarter-final series.
After a scoreless first period, Christophe Boivin got the Titan on the board early in the second period for the first of his two goals on the night. Boivin’s fourth of the playoffs came assisted by Antoine Morand. Defenceman Adam Holwell, seconds after hitting the post on his first attempt on net, fired a seeing-eyed shot from the blue line that beat Armada starter Francis Leclerc for his second of the post-season. Rodrigo Abols and Jeffrey Viel picked up the assists on the play. The Titan would make it a 3-0 game on the power play with Dawson Theede notching his third of the playoffs from Zachary Malatesta and Luc Deschênes to close out the second period.
Pierre-Luc Dubois would get the Armada on the board within the first minute of the third period, but it was all for naught as Christophe Boivin fired home his second of the game and fifth of the playoffs minutes later with Vladimir Kuznetsov and Holwell assisting before Abols would register his fifth goal, deflecting a shot by Viel past Leclerc.
The Armada would record their first power play goal of the series mid-way through the final frame thanks to Connor Bramwell, but in the final five minutes on two separate man-advantages, Titan captain Viel and Kuznetsov would add two more goals in the home team’s favour with Viel scoring his ninth of the post-season from Morand and Boivin while the two would also assist on Kuznetsov’s eighth sealing the 7-2 victory for the Titan.
Reilly Pickard (W, 3-1) faced limited shots thanks to the Titan defence in front of him, stopping 20 of 22 shots faced. Meanwhile the Armada’s Leclerc (L, 0-2) allowed seven goals on 32 shots.
Special teams were the flavour of the night with the Titan going three-for-six on the power play while the Armada went one-for-four, ending a 0-for-13 run on the man-advantage to start the series.
ONCE MORE IN BATHURST FRIDAY NIGHT
The fifth game of the Titan and Armada’s quarter-final series goes Friday night at the K.C. Irving Regional Centre with a scheduled 7:00 pm puck drop. The Titan will be looking to close out the best-of-seven series, while the Armada will be looking to force a sixth game in Boisbriand, QC on Monday, April 17. With the Ace of Spades still alluding all comers, the Chase the Ace jackpot for Game 5 is estimated at $96,000. Tickets for the all-important fifth game are on sale at the arena box office and can also be purchased by phone at 1-877-549-3200 and online at admission.com.
Written by Bryan Willett