PEI Rocket vs Moncton Wildcats 12-3 (5-5)
By Dan Linn
The PEI Rocket who boast 4 of the Habs prospects, take on a division rival, and look to build on their impressive lead over the top rated Cape Breton. They have a 3 point lead as they sit in first place in their division, as ex-Hab coach Alain Vigneault has his team playing some very good hockey in the early part of the season. With Cory Urquhart and Michael Lambert getting snubed by Team Canada, hopefully this will push them even harder to show the “experts” they were wrong.
Moncton gets on the board first, as Steve Bernier was able to get the puck over to Mathieu Betournay. But the 3rd line of the Rocket were able to tie it up, as Jimmy Bonneau was able to get one behind goalie Corey Crawford. Then the Rocket take the lead less then 2 minutes later, as Cory Urquhart was able to get the puck to Michael Lambert who scored his 20th of the year, after scoring only 28 all of last year. Then 2 seconds into play after the goal, Bonneau drops the gloves with Thierry Douville late in the period.
Moncton wouldn’t back down and came out hard in the peroid. They tied it up early on, with Pelham getting it past Mior. But the Rocket playing in front of their home crowd kept pressing, and soon enough were able to get the go ahead goal. It seemed like the Rocket were getting shots all period long, and Crawford was facing a ton of rubber, but couldn’t stop Persson, as he picked up the puck and drove it home. Jimmy Bonneau picked up an assist on the play as he got it to the defense to keep the play going. Just over a minute later, Bonneau strikes again! Bonneau bounced on a rebound, and put home his 2nd goal of the game, after having only 1 goal all season. But late in the peroid, Moncton was able to get one on the PP, with less then a minute to go. Shots were heavily in the Rockets favor, but Crawford kept his team in it. Bonneau got moved up to the top line with Lambert and Urquhart late in the period, good move by the coach to reward the hard work.
Vigneault’s reward for putting Bonneau on the top line paid off less then 2 minutes into the 3rd, as Bonneau gets his first ever hat trick in major junior hockey. Way to go Jimmy! He gets his 4th goal as Soucy was able to get him the puck and he fired it home. But with the Rocket shorthanded, Steve Beriner was able to get one one on the PP, and put the Wildcats back in the game. Then late in the period Bernier and Betournay hooked up and tied the game at 5-5.
No goals, but the Rocket had all the chances. They controled the play, but were unable to beat Crawford who kept the game close when the game shouldn’t have been. It’s a shame, as the Rocket were controling the play most of the night, as they genarated 53 shots on goal, to the Wildcats 23.