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 Charlottetown Islanders

Wildcats Best Isles 4-3 in OT

February 24, 2024 - Quebec Maritimes Junior Hockey League (QMJHL)
Charlottetown Islanders News Release

Moncton, NB - The Moncton Wildcats scratch out a 4-3 win in overtime Saturday night at the Avenir Centre in front of 4809 fans.

Carter Bickle was strong, stopping 35 of 39 shots in the loss.

Bickle keeps it square after the first

Moncton took control of the ice right after the opening draw. Caleb Desnoyers and Ettiene Morin tested Bickle right away, but it didn't stop there.

After two failed clearing attempts, Miles Mueller picked up the puck and drove the net. He was able to muscle it past Bickle to open the scoring under two minutes into the game.

Bickle started to settle in after that.

Charlottetown started to get some chances of their own and eventually, after some sustained pressure, Giovanni Morneau drew a penalty. Oscar Plandowski tripped him up, sending the Isles to the power play.

Marcus Kearsey had the lone shot of the man advantage despite holding pressure throughout.

Just after the penalty expired, the puck popped out of the corner from Matthew Butler to Isaac Vos. He sent a cross-ice pass to Will Shields and he ripped his eighth goal of the season to tie the game.

Moncton started their counter-attack. They hemmed the Isles in their own zone for the majority of the rest of the frame, but Bickle was up for the challenge, keeping the game tied at one going into the intermission.

Back-and-forth second, Moncton leads by 1

Mueller once again opened the period with a goal, this time on the power play. Just over four minutes in, he ripped it from the point through traffic to restore the Wildcats' lead.

Not long after, Moncton captain Yoan Loshing was given a five-minute major and a game misconduct for kneeing Morneau. Morneau did not see the ice for the rest of the game.

While on the five-minute power play, the Isles struggled to get anything going. Michael Horth was also penalised for high-sticking.

He came out of the box with just over 40 seconds left before the man advantage expired. The Islanders pushed back with the little time they had and it gave them momentum.

Will Allen was able to rush up the wing and beat Steinman five-hole for his third goal of the season to tie the game back up.

Both teams started to go back and forth until Desnoyers found himself in front of Bickle with time and space. He received a pass and shot it into the back of the net to once again restore the lead for Moncton.

The Isles started to respond again with chances from the back-end. Kearsey and Max Jardine each had solid chances turned aside by Steinman, and the Wildcats entered the second intermission up 3-2.

Just as time was expiring in the frame, Cole Huckins drew a power play. Gabe Smith took a checking from behind the penalty with 1.9 seconds left.

Horth, Bickle force extra time

Charlottetown opened the final frame on the power play, but Moncton's penalty kill unit kept them at bay.

It wasn't until after the penalty expired that Huckins sent the puck on goal before Horth buried the rebound for his 28th of the season.

With the game tied at three goals apiece, Ross Campbell found himself on a breakaway. He faked a shot and tried to beat Steinman on the back-hand. The netminder followed and kept the game even.

Then, Moncton started to push back. Riley Sampson and Olivier Boutin each had opportunities but Bickle shut the door.

James Swan broke the puck through the neutral zone and fed it to Alexis Michaud who fired the puck on goal, but was denied.

Moments later, Boutin fired a shot from distance but Bickle made a nice glove save to keep the game even.

Michaud had two more chances just after, one from an awkward angle from beside the net and one from the slot, both turned aside.

Then, the Wildcats had their chances. Vince Collard broke through the defence and Bickle made an arm save, then Collard had another chance just moments later at an empty net, but Bickle made a great cross crease save to force overtime.

Michaud was given a prime opportunity with a takeaway early in the extra frame but was unable to get the puck through.

Butler and Allen then went on the rush together but Moncton came away with the puck. Julius Sumpf was given a long stretch pass and he found himself on a breakaway. He beat Bickle on the back-hand to give Moncton the win 4-3 in overtime.

The Wildcats led in shots 39-30 and outhit the Isles 15-13.

These two teams meet again tomorrow afternoon in Charlottetown at the Eastlink Centre. Puck drop is at 3 p.m.

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Quebec Maritimes Junior Hockey League Stories from February 24, 2024

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