Jeffrey Viel had his best offensive game of the playoffs Saturday night in Boisbriand, QC as the Acadie-Bathurst Titan held on to a four-to-three victory against the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada to even their best-of-seven quarter-final series at one game apiece.
Alex Barré-Boulet opened the scoring for the Armada less than two minutes into the first period giving the home team a 1-0 lead after 20 minutes of play in a frame largely dominated by the Armada for the first three-quarters.
The Titan stormed out of the gate in the second period scoring three unanswered goals, the first coming from Titan captain Viel – his fifth of the post-season. The power play marker came 8:45 into the period and saw Christophe Boivin and Antoine Morand pick up the assists. Aaron Brisebois would pick up his first career post-season goal with 6:22 to play in the middle frame to give the Titan a 2-1 lead with assists going to Félix Boivin and Luc Deschênes. With 1:46 left in the period, Viel would notch his second of the period and sixth of the playoffs off a rebound from Rodrigo Abols’ inital shot on a play set up by Noah Dobson giving the Titan a 3-1 lead after two periods.
The Armada would retake control in the first-half of the third period, scoring a second goal less than two minutes in off the stick of Connor Bramwell. However, with 1:49 left in the game, Viel would complete the hat trick, recording his seventh goal of the playoffs tipping home a shot by Jordan Maher on a play initiated by defenceman Zachary Malatesta. The Armada would add a late goal from Barré-Boulet before the final buzzer, but it was too little, too late as the Titan held on for the victory to send the series to Bathurst tied 1-1.
Reilly Pickard got the start for the Titan and made 28 saves on 31 shots faced while Samuel Montembeault allowed four goals on 37 shots, suffering his first defeat of the 2017 post-season.
THREE IN BATHURST
The best-of-seven quarter-final series between the Titan and the Armada now shifts to the K.C. Irving Regional Centre in Bathurst, NB for the next three games of the series. Game 3 goes Tuesday night with a 7:00 pm ADT puck drop. The Titan Foundation Chase the Ace returns with an estimated jackpot of $80,000. Tickets for Game 3 are on sale at the arena box office, by phone at 1-877-549-3200 and online at admission.com.
Written by Bryan Willett