GAME RECAP | Laval Rocket vs Bridgeport Islanders: Line-up, Score, Statistics, Highlights, Post-Game, Interviews, AHL, Three Stars, Rocket Sports Media
|FINAL | Game 62, Home Game 31 | Wednesday, March 22, 2023|
|Place Bell, Laval, QC|
Rocket LineupForward lines
Anthony Richard – Peter Abbandonato – Joel Teasdale
Xavier Simoneau – Mitchell Stephens – Pierrick Dube
Emil Heineman – Brandon Gignac – Gabriel Bourque
Jan Mysak – Nolan Yaremko – Lucas CondottaDefense pairings
William Trudeau – Corey Schueneman
Mattias Norlinder – Frederic Allard
Olivier Galipeau – Tory DelloGoaltenders
Cayden Primeau – Philippe DesrosiersScratches
Jayden Struble, Nicolas Beaudin, Danick Martel, Louis Boudon, Madison Bowey, Joe Vrbetic, Riley McKay, John Parker-JonesInjuries
Gianni Fairbrother (knee), Otto Leskinen, Kevin Poulin (upper-body), Brandon Gignac
Game Report written by Chris G
The Laval Rocket resumed their four-game homestand on Wednesday by hosting the Bridgeport Islanders. Laval snapped a three-game losing streak on Saturday by defeating the Utica Comets, while Bridgeport lost 3-2 to the Hartford Wolfpack. The Islanders won the only previous matchup between the two teams this season.
Jean-Francois Houle was able to count on reinforcements up front. Anthony Richard returned to the lineup in a Rocket uniform for the first time since March 8th, after his recent stint with the Montreal Canadiens.
Emil Heineman made his AHL debut after being assigned to Laval on Monday. Heineman arrived in town after his season in the Swedish Hockey League concluded. The forward collected 15 points in 35 games for Leksands IF.
Cayden Primeau got the start for the fourth consecutive match after making 27 saves in Saturday’s win.
Heineman impressed his teammates on his first shit when blocking a point shot in the defensive zone. The entire bench stood up and banged the boards to support the newest member of the team.
Olivier Galipeau put his team shorthanded 11:04 into the match, but luckily for him it lasted 34 seconds as the Islanders cancelled the power play with a penalty of their own. Thirty seconds later, Richard was tripped in the offensive zone and gave the Rocket a 56-second power play. Goaltender Cory Schneider made several quality saves to keep Laval off the board.
Galipeau received a second minor infraction before the end of the period, however it was costly this time around. Dennis Cholowski‘s point shot gave a rebound to the right of Primeau where Andy Andreoff waited for the opportunity to bury the puck in the net.
The goalies were kept busy in the first period as teams combined for 31 shots on goal and both goaltenders came up with saves on quality chances.
Laval went on the power play early in the period but were not able to get into position for any dangerous scoring chances.
Bridgeport doubled their lead during the seventh minute as they headed on an odd-man rush and Kyle MacLean got the puck in the back of the net.
Later in the period, Houle used his timeout when his squad had a five-on-three power play for 50 seconds. Laval capitalized with five seconds remaining when Heineman recorded his first career AHL goal by beating Schneider with a one-timer. It was the Rocket’s first power play goal in four games.
Laval’s indiscipline cost them another goal with 1:10 remaining in the period as Arnaud Durandeau banked in a loose puck in the crease to increase the Islanders’ lead to two goals.
Laval controlled the puck for the better part of the third period, but Schneider was still able to hold the crease and keep the puck out, even when things got scrambly in the blue paint.
A high-sticking call on MacLean with 7:09 left in the period gave the Rocket a four-on-three advantage for a small window of time, but both that and the ensuing power play for the home team didn’t result in any additional goals.
With just 4:14 left in the game, Mitchell Stephens managed to bang a loose puck through Schneider’s pads to pull his team to within one goal of the Islanders. Almost a minute later, however, Paul Thompson beat Primeau cleanly on a breakaway to restore Bridgeport’s two-goal lead.
Fast-forward nine seconds, and Durandeau got loose on a breakaway after picking off a Laval pass and made the score 5-2 for the visitors. A late goal by Brandon Gignac boosted the Laval tally to three goals on the night, but it wasn’t enough to collect any points.
The Rocket still find themselves on the outside of a playoff position in the North Division. They’ll now regroup and get ready for their final game of the home stand on Friday when they welcome the Central Division-leading Milwaukee Admirals to Place Bell.
Be sure to scroll down to listen to audio from post-game interviews with Heineman, Joel Teasdale, and Houle, conducted by the AHL Report and other members of the media.
Plus / Minus
▲ Emil Heineman, Mattias Norlinder
▼ Frederic Allard, Xavier Simoneau, Olivier Galipeau
|1 for 7||Power Play||2 for 5|
Stars of the Game
|AHL Official Three Stars|
|Video highlights will be added when available|
What Did They Say?
Post-game interviews conducted for The AHL Report tonight by Chris G
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