Teams and players both reach for the top in the latest edition of The Q Report
Flying High Again
Entering this week, the last time the Sherbrooke Phoenix was perched in top spot on the Kia CHL Top 10 Rankings, the new decade had literally just dawned. Thanks to a recent streak of 15 victories in its last 16 games, including a current nine-game win streak, the Phoenix finds itself back atop the list. The club is currently on pace for a remarkable 112-point campaign.
Moncton Makes it a Baker’s Dozen
Two other clubs that have been mainstays in the Top 10 most of the season battled one another on Thursday night during a marquee matchup in Chicoutimi. By the time the dust settled, the visiting Moncton Wildcats, ranked third in the nation this week, had defeated the seventh-ranked Sagueneens by a score of 4-2 for their 13th consecutive triumph, just one win shy of the franchise record.
Welsh – Unforgettable, on and off the Ice
Charlottetown Islanders goaltender Matthew Welsh is a fixture in the community. From blood drives, to book reading, to big wins, there’s not much the overage netminder hasn’t experienced either at the rink or away from it. Another unforgettable experience for Welsh will occur this weekend as he sits less than 50 minutes away from the all-time QMJHL record for minutes played by a goalie. This is a record that, for now, is held by another goaltender from the franchise’s past, Ryan Mior, who tended the twine for the PEI Rocket and Gatineau Olympiques from 2003-2008.
Milestone for Mercer
Tuesday night was memorable for one of the newest Chicoutimi forwards, Dawson Mercer. Facing off against Gatineau, the third-year veteran posted his first four-point contest in a Sags uniform and his third on the season. It also allowed Bay Roberts, Newfoundland’s finest to reach the 150 point plateau in his QMJHL career.
The Kids are All Right
The future looks bright for the Islanders… both on the ice and off! Last weekend, the organization rolled out its “Kids Run the Show Day”, which saw boys and girls from the area go behind the scenes and witness different roles played by team staff on game day. That included areas such as behind the PA microphone and in the broadcast booth, where Lucas Hulton provided a showstopping call of Cedric Desruisseaux’s game winner.
Légaré Lets Loose
Baie-Comeau star Nathan Légaré had himself a time last weekend, notching back-to-back hat tricks in consecutive home victories over Val-d’Or, earning him the title of Ultramar Player of the Week. The Pittsburgh Penguins prospect, who is gunning for his second straight 40-goal campaign, posted two of the three hat tricks scored in the “Q” last week. The other came off the stick of Wildcats center Benoit-Olivier Groulx, who turned the trick against his former club, the Halifax Mooseheads.
No Goals on Cole
The week wasn’t all bad for the Mooseheads. Last Thursday night, the team hosted the Rimouski Oceanic. Entering the game on a nine-game losing streak and with starting netminder Alexis Gravel on the shelf due to injury, it was up the Cole McLaren to hold down the fort against one of the league’s top squads. The result? A 32-save performance for McLaren and a 1-0 victory for the Moose! Needless to say, the third-year veteran keeper was named the game’s first star.
Other whitewashes in the league last week included a 21-stop performance for Tristan Coté-Cazenave (Quebec) and Olivier Rodrigue (Moncton) kicking aside 23 shots for his fourth shutout of the year.