Blizzard crushes Timberwolves

MIRAMICHI, New Brunswick – The Edmundston Blizzard crushed the Miramichi Timberwolves like a steamroller on Saturday night, winning 9-1 on Miramichi ice. It was a victory that left no room for doubt in a joyous feast that resembled an all-you-can-eat buffet.

The Blizzard scored nine goals in the first two periods, a team record in its seven-year history in Edmundston.

Eight Blizzard players scored: Jérémy Ste-Marie (2g, 2nd star), Ryan Loveless, Jean-Christophe Coulombe, Zachary Robichaud (1st career MHL goal), Jérémy Fortin (1g, 2a, 3rd star), Peter Amanatidis (1g, 3a, 1st star), Philippe Collette (1g, 1a) and Michael McQuaid (first goal in a Blizzard uniform). Goalie Nicholas Sheehan put the icing on the cake with an assist.

The game marked the debut of Ben Wallace, recently acquired in a trade. He picked up an assist in reduced ice time.

Only Ludovic Dufort was able to beat Sheehan, who faced 25 shots. The Timberwolves’ starting goaltender Niko Boudreau stepped aside after allowing four goals on eight shots in the first period. His replacement, Jack Flanagan, was bombarded with 25 shots in the second frame and gave up five goals. Neither team scored in the third. The Blizzard dominated 38-25 in shots.

At 15:26 of the second period, Blizzard players held their breath when Sheehan was checked behind his net by giant Reese Allen, the same player who injured Olivier Coulombe in last spring’s playoffs. Allen was assessed a major penalty for interfering the goalie and a game misconduct, for which he may be suspended.

The Blizzard were hungry as wolves from the start, scoring first at 1:08 and then again at 1:37, the two fastest single-game goals to start a game in their history. Adding a third goal at 7:24, it was also a team mark for the fastest first three goals from the beginning of the first period.

Edmundston extended its winning streak to eight games. With a record of 18-8-0-0, the Blizzard trails the West Kent Steamers (18-7-2-0) by just two points. The Blizzard have a game in hand. In the race for first place in the Eastlink North Division, West Kent has 38 points, followed by Edmundston (36) and Miramichi (32).

Having reached their 26th game of the season, the Blizzard are halfway through their 52-game schedule. Edmundston takes on the Campbellton Tigers next Friday (7 p.m.) in Restigouche County.

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Peter Amanatidis collected four points in the game for the second time in his career.. Photos archives Percy Picard

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Contact: Hugues Chiasson, vice-president communications – The Edmundston Blizzard; (506) 740-0623 – cell phone