SAINT-JEAN, NB | We may have to stop saying that the Shawinigan Cataractes were overlooked in the Memorial Cup tournament. Daniel Renaud’s men won their second straight game on Thursday, this time against the Hamilton Bulldogs to ensure, at the very least, a participation in next Monday’s semi-final. .
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Shawinigan struck in the mouth of his guns scoring his three goals in power play while goalkeeper Antoine Coulombe kept the strong point despite a 40-shot flurry, including 19 in the opening period alone.
“You see inspired performances, guys who are dedicated to their teammates, their team and a certain way of playing. We have such a close-knit group that on our side, even if outside the noise was that we were neglected, we believed in us and still believe in us, “said assistant coach Pascal Dupuis, who has returned to take the lead. To Daniel Renaud in front of the media for the loss of voice that has afflicted him for several days.
With two regular wins, the Cataractes are now at the top of the league table with a total of six points. On Saturday they will face Saint John Sea Dogs in a match that will send one of the two teams straight to the Grand Final. A single point will be enough for the Cats to finish first and secure a place in the final game.
“This is what we want. We came here with the aim of winning every game. Having the certainty of a semi-final is a good thing, but we haven’t finished our work yet, ”added Mavrik Bourque.
The latter was once again the offensive catalyst for the Cataractes with Xavier Bourgault against the Bulldogs. The two NHL picks from the first round were involved in all three of their goals, each recording one goal and two assists.
First of all, they slowed down the momentum of the Bulldogs who, as one had to understand from a team that had lost the first match, started the match with a bang.
After Mason McTavish opened the scoring for Hamilton who dominated early in the match, Bourgault accepted Bourque’s fine pass to equalize the match. The opposite scenario occurred before the end of the first frame when it was Bourgault who gave way to Bourque before the latter beat Marco Constantini with a powerful one-shot shot.
The Bulldogs drew the game at the end of the second and then power play hit the Cats again in the third.
Bourgault sells it to Bourque who immediately identifies Olivier Nadeau well placed in front of the net. The latter only had to push the puck into an empty net. The whole thing lasted only eight seconds.
This game was designed by Daniel Renaud and explained to players moments before the start of the power play.
“We haven’t played this game for a while. We changed Mavs [Bourque] And [Pierrick] Voiced. We saw an opening of the video between the second and third and we made the change and it worked, “said Nadeau.
Coulombe sends a message
Even if the big Cataractes scored great goals with a man’s advantage, the scenario would probably have been different had it not been for the genius of goalkeeper Coulombe. In the first, he stood up despite the insistence of the Bulldogs and the same thing at the end of the game when the Ontario champions tried everything to create parity.
“He played a very important game, Dupuis acknowledged. He showed a lot of character. He made great saves and got his hands on the puck when it was time. It seems he was the one who managed the pace of the game. ”
For his part, Coulombe wanted to bounce back after the Cataractes decided to use Charles-Antoine Lavallée in the first match of the tournament.
“Of course there is a competition between two goalkeepers,” said the 19-year-old goalkeeper. Lavy and I have a good relationship, but for sure not starting the tournament made me feel bad and I wanted to recover tonight. ”
Friday’s game will pit the Bulldogs against the Edmonton Oil Kings in a match that will decide the last team to advance to the semi-finals.