GAME RECAP | Laval Rocket vs Abbotsford Canucks: Line-up, Score, Statistics, Highlights, Post-Game, Interviews, AHL, Three Stars, Rocket Sports Media
|FINAL | Game 22, Away Game 10 | Saturday, December 3, 2022|
|Abbotsford Center, Abbotsford, BC|
Rocket LineupForward lines
Anthony Richard – Brandon Gignac – Xavier Simoneau
Rafael Harvey-Pinard – Alex Belzile – Jesse Ylonen
Peter Abbandonato – Mitchell Stephens – Gabriel Bourque
Lucas Condotta – Jan Mysak – Danick MartelDefense pairings
Corey Schueneman – Nicolas Beaudin
William Trudeau – Otto Leskinen
Mattias Norlinder – Tory DelloGoaltenders
Kevin Poulin – Joe VrbeticScratches
Gianni Fairbrother (knee), Nate Schnarr (lower-body), Cayden Primeau (upper-body), Madison Bowey (upper-body), Justin Barron (lower-body)
Game Report written by Amy Johnson
For the first and only time this season, the Laval Rocket find themselves in British Columbia for the weekend, wrapping up their season series with the Abbotsford Canucks. After an overtime victory in Utica on Wednesday night, the Quebec team would try once again to begin a winning streak.
They would have to do it, however, without the help of some key players. Cayden Primeau did not make the trip to Abbotsford while still healing from a cut on the head he received on the bench in Belleville last weekend. On the blue line, Madison Bowey (upper body) and Justin Barron (lower body) both were sidelined due to injuries. Captain Alex Belzile, however, returned from his injury for the first time in a couple of weeks.
The Canucks also had a deficiency in net, as with Thatcher Demko getting injured in Vancouver, the NHL club recalled Collin Delia. That left Arturs Silovs on his own, prompting Abbotsford to sign one of the ECHL’s top goaltenders this season, Jake Kupsky, to a PTO.
It took quite a while for the Rocket to find their footing in this game. The Canucks controlled most of the play for the first half of the period, and didn’t allow Laval to register a shot on goal until more than five minutes had passed.
Both teams exchanged penalties in the period, and there was even some four-on-four play, but no one could find the back of the net. Poulin made some good saves on the penalty kill amidst a barrage of shots from Abbotsford.
With Belzile in the box for tripping, Laval’s third penalty of the period, Phil Di Giuseppe finally got a puck through Poulin when he blasted a shot from the circle. That triggered an avalanche of teddy bears to rain down from the crowd, and a short delay while the ice crew and volunteers gathered all the donations.
Laval responded with a power play goal of their own when Anthony Richard fed a long cross-ice pass to Jesse Ylonen who was driving the net. Ylonen quickly redirected the puck past Silovs to tie the game.
It wasn’t long before the Canucks restored their one-goal lead; Jet Woo fired a one-timer past Poulin on the blocker side, while down on one knee.
The teams ended the period with 1:13 of four-on-four hockey time left on the clock, due to another round of concurring minors was handed out toward the end of the frame.
After hobbling to the bench due to a hit from the opposition in the first period, the Rocket announced prior to the start of the middle frame that Jan Mysak would not return to the game.
About five minutes into the period, Abbotsford found some rhythm in the offensive zone and spent a long shift putting a lot of pressure and shots on net. Woo fired the puck from the point and Lane Pederson was in front to put the rebound up and over Poulin.
Anthony Richard soon brought Laval back within a goal when he ripped a one-timer past Silovs on the back door, thanks to a feed from Xavier Simoneau. Two minutes later, Di Giuseppe scored his second goal of the night thanks to a determined drive to the net by Vasily Podkolzin, who centered the puck perfectly for his teammate.
The scoring settled down for the second half of the period, but the penalty box was plenty busy. At least six penalties were called in the final three minutes of the frame, with both teams starting to express some frustrations.
With carryover power play time, Laval brought the score back within one goal when Peter Abbandonato put the puck on net just 39 seconds into the third period. The puck bounced off of Silovs and over the goal line.
As has happened so many times this season, and in this game, Laval’s penalty box rotation continued to cause problems for them. With Lucas Condotta already serving a hooking penalty, Poulin was called for slashing. The penalty was served by Otto Leskinen, and Pederson scored his second goal of the night by finishing off a textbook tic-tac-toe play.
Poulin was then given a 10-minute misconduct after the goal, which put Condotta back in the box to serve it for his netminder.
Things then just started to get silly after that. A fight broke out, and three goals were scored in about a minute’s time. First it was Abbotsford taking a three-goal lead when Vincent Arseneau potted a rebound. Then almost immediately after that, Rafael Harvey-Pinard drove the net and made no mistake putting the puck past Silovs. On a power play less than a minute later, Abbandonato shoveled the puck across the line as he was going to the ice.
Apart from a couple of additional penalties by both teams, the final seven minutes of the game were relatively uneventful. The Rocket did what they could to find another tying goal in their bag of tricks, but nothing materialized. With Poulin pulled for an extra attacker, Abbotsford managed to score an empty-net goal to put a final stamp on the game.
What’s Next?These two teams will battle it out again on Sunday, in their final meeting of the season. With injuries mounting, players getting ice time cut in-game due to performance issues, and frustrations boiling over on both sides, it’s sure to be an intense matchup.
Plus / Minus
▲ Anthony Richard, Jesse Ylonen, Peter Abbandonato
▼ Kevin Poulin, Danick Martel, Nicolas Beaudin
|3 for 7||Power Play||2 for 7|
Stars of the Game
|AHL Official Three Stars|
What Did They Say?
Post-game interviews not available for tonight’s game
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