ECHL Recap: An eventful week in Trois-Rivières

CREDIT : DENIS BELLEROSE PHOTOGRAPHE

What caught the attention of the Lions this week was not the results on the ice but what happened in the general manager’s office.

Indeed, Marc-André Bergeron was not idle at the end of the season when he proceeded to sign several players, probably to make them pass an audition for the next season. The Lions, enthroned in 6th and penultimate row of the division, out of the portrait of the series, are visibly in next season mode.

Wednesday night fever

Wednesday’s game got off to a flying start for the Lions. They applied pressure on the Admirals from the first seconds of the game. Although Norfolk dominated in shots, the Lions were more threatening and had the best scoring chances. The first period ended uneventfully. Attacks from all sides, but the goalkeepers repelled all shots aimed at them.

The second period was the history of the Admirals of Norfolk. They knew how to provoke the best chances to score and took advantage of them. It was in the seventh minute that the Admirals pierced the Joe Vrbetic mystery and finally scored the match’s first goal. Before the end of the period, Norfolk doubled their lead to retreat to the locker room with a 2-0 lead.

The Lions tried everything in the third period. Midway through the period, Cédrick Lacroix closed the gap with his sixth goal of the season. Marc-André Bergeron then withdrew his goalkeeper at the end of the game but in vain. A penalty to Brett Stapley with less than two minutes left ended all hopes for the Lions, who had to admit defeat 2-1 against the Admirals.

Friday night lights

CREDIT: DENIS BELLEROSE PHOTOGRAPHE

Friday night has a name, Joe Vrbetic. The rookie goalkeeper of the Lions has indeed obtained his first professional shutout. On the other hand, another name is to remember, Anthony Beauregard. Beauregard got his 22nd goal of the season, which equals a personal best and a team record Anthony Nellis held until now.

Back to the game now. First, a peculiar situation has arisen. The referee in charge of the match could not show up in time for the game, so the line judges shared the task of referee and line judge.

The Lions were aptly named from the start of the game. James Phelan was the first to sound the charge by being threatened around the Norfolk net, causing a few scoring chances. The Lions finally unlocked in the eighth minute with a goal from Nicholas Guay. A few minutes later, Kuzmeski doubled the lead with a point shot on the power play. To end the period, Ryan Francis showed all his strength to collect his 18th of the season. Trois-Rivières retires to the locker room with a 3-0 lead.

The second period has only one name, Joe Vrbetic. The Lions goalkeeper stood like a wall in front of a barrage of 25 shots from the Admirals against only five shots from the Trois-Rivières team. They thus survived the storm and ended the engagement with their three goals lead.

As for the third twenty, the home team increased its lead thanks to Anthony Beauregard’s 22nd goal of the season. And finally, on a power play, Brett Stapley put the game out of reach. Joe Vrbetic thus celebrated his first career shutout in the pro.

Saturday afternoon: a comeback story

CREDIT: DENIS BELLEROSE PHOTOGRAPHE

A very different start to Friday night as the Admirals came out strong from the first seconds of the period. At mid-period, the shots were equal, but the chances of scoring were clearly in favor of the Norfolk troops.

Indeed, the Admirals took advantage of a Philippe Desrosiers, looking for his bearings to threaten the Lions. For their part, the Lions came up against a goalkeeper in much better shape than the day before, but also players who sacrificed themselves in front of him to block a lot of shots. Luckily for the Lions, they retreated to the locker room one goal behind.

Returning from intermission, the Admirals picked up where they left off and doubled their lead in less than 15 seconds. Blachman tripled his club’s lead by beating Desrosiers, who seemed to have regained his form.

At 3-0, the Lions finally showed signs of life and released their claws. Bad penalties from Norfolk gave the Lions momentum. A terrible penalty from the Admiral’s goalkeeper gave a five-on-three to the Lions, who took advantage of it to tie the game 3-3 through our captain Cédrick Montminy’s second goal of the game.
Jeff Carr’s squad ended the debate in overtime when Ryan Foss beat Desrosiers to give the Admirals a 4-3 victory.

On the road again

The Lions are on the road for the last time this season, playing seven games in the next two weeks before returning for the season’s final game in front of the local crowd!

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