EDMUNDSTON, New Brunswick – Few fans gathered at the Jean-Daigle Centre Thursday night would have believed that the stake of the game between the Grand Falls Rapids and the Edmundston Blizzard would have been decided at the 52nd second of the game …
When Mitchell McLeod scored his first of two goals, the Blizzard didn’t look back and beat its Northwestern rivals 6-0. It was Blizzard’s first shutout for over two years. Nicholas Sheehan repelled all 21 shots by the Rapids to earn his first shutout in the MHL. The Moncton goaltender saw his goals against average drop to 2.50, the league’s 4th best.
Ironically, the Blizzard’s last shutout (4-0) was against the Rapids on October 20, 2019 at the Jean-Daigle Centre.
Ethan Johnson (1g, 2a – 1st star), Tristan Therrien (1g, 2a – 2nd star), Mitchell McLeod (2g – 3rd star), Austin Paul (1g, 1a) and Dylan Lang beat Gio DiMattia who faced 37 shots.
The Blizzard intended to get its revenge after falling 4-3 in OT at the home of the Rapids on October 29. And Edmundston struck early on Thursday, scoring three goals in the first frame while allowing just two shots to the visitors.
In the absence of defenseman Jérémie Thibodeau, whom the Chicoutimi Saguenéens of the QMJHL recalled for their trip to the Maritimes, the Blizzard was able to count on the services of 16-year-old rearguard Cohen McCallum who skated for the first time in the MHL.
The Blizzard strengthened its defensive squad by acquiring free agent Matthew Beaty, a 19-year-old defenseman from Minnesota. This season he played in the North American Hockey League (NAHL) playing with the Amarillo Wranglers and the Bismarck Bobcats. In 11 games, he collected one assist. Edmundston will also add defenseman Brant King, who was acquired via a trade earlier this week.
The Blizzard (9-2-1-0) braces for its biggest test of the season when the Summerside Western Capitals (12-1-0-1) comes to the Jean-Daigle Centre on Saturday (7:30 p.m.) and Sunday (3 p.m.). The Western Capitals are ranked number 2 in the country and the Blizzard is 14th.
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Nicholas Sheehan is the hottest goalie in the Eastlink North division. After being named the best goalie in his division last week, he shut out the Grand Falls Rapids on Thursday during the Remembrance Day game. Photo Percy Picard
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Contact: Hugues Chiasson, vice-president communications – The Edmundston Blizzard; (506) 740-0623 – cell phone