MONTREAL, QC—Friday’s semi-final MasterCard Memorial Cup game will include both teams from the QMJHL, the defending champion Saint John Sea Dogs and the host Shawinigan Cataractes, as the latter of the two teams were the victors of a 6-1 tie-breaker matchup against the Edmonton Oil Kings.
With goals from both Canadiens’ prospects Morgan Ellis and Michaël Bournival, the Cataractes were in control of the game the minute Yannick Veilleux put them ahead 1-0 at the 7:30 mark. Ellis’ first of the tournament came on the power play at 17:01, off a one-timer set up by Brandon Gormley. Then Bournival assisted on Anton Zlobin’s third goal of the tournament in the opening moments of the second. Kirill Kabanov made it 4-0 just over a minute later when his shot hit Edmonton goaltender Laurent Brossoit, took a strange bounce, and banked off Brossoit again to wind up behind him.
On another Shawinigan power play, Ellis made a cross-ice pass to Bournival, who was left unattended at the front of the net, and he made no mistake to put his team up by five. Then as the Cataractes’ Vincent Arseneau was off serving an elbowing minor, Pierre Olivier Morin picked up an errant pass and went in on the breakaway for yet another goal, this time via the opposite form of special teams. Only Henrik Samuelsson responded for the Oil Kings, who with the loss find themselves eliminated from further contention.
Meanwhile, the Cataractes have set themselves up for yet another matchup against their QMJHL counterparts, after which the winner will take on the London Knights in Sunday’s championship final. Wednesday’s tilt, featuring a myriad of brouhahas and fines aplenty, remains fresh in the minds of both teams and their respective sets of fans. London will have had four days of rest compared to their potential opponents—Shawinigan will have played three games in three nights after tonight. Action gets underway at 7 p.m. EST.