MONTREAL — Goaltender Jacob Gervais-Chouinard of Sherbrooke, Que., made 49 saves as ninth-ranked McGill exploded for five second-period goals en route to a 6-2 victory over No.8 Carleton in OUA men’s hockey at McConnell Arena, Saturday.
It extended McGill’s win streak to six and was their fourth straight over the Ravens dating back to last year, as the Redmen improved to 27-18-1 lifetime in 46 games played overall since the rivalry started in 1968. More importantly, it moved McGill into sole possession of first place in the OUA East Division, with a stellar 13-3-0 record. The Redmen are two points ahead of Carleton (12-4-0) and will now sit perched atop the standings for the next five weeks, as both teams head into the December exam break.
McGill spent much of the game in the penalty box, leading to a lopsided 51-17 disadvantage in shots. But the Redmen erased seven of eight shorthanded situations, including a pair of two-man scenarios. McGill ranks second of 19 OUA teams in penalty-killing with an 88.1 per cent success rate.
The 49-save effort was a career-high regular-season performance by Gervais-Chouinard, a 6-foot-1, 163-pound sophomore who also racked-up 52 in a 3-2 double overtime loss to Alberta at the CIS championships last spring. The 22-year-old education major joined the Redmen last season after starring for Sherbrooke and Rimouski in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League and meriting a stint in the AHL with the Hamilton Bulldogs. He improved to 7-2 on the season and leads all OUA netminders with a sparkling .941 save percentage. He also ranks second (behind teammate Karel St-Laurent) in goals-against average at 1.90.
Marc-Olivier Vachon paced the Redmen with a pair of markers, while David Rose tallied his team-leading ninth of the season. Neal Prokop was credited with the game-winner, while also collecting an assist after one of his shots bounced in the net off the skate of Simon Tardif-Richard. Prokop a 24-year-old master’s student in kinesiology, played his fourth straight game in front of his parents who were visiting from Winnipeg. His father has compiled an unblemished 9-0 record when watching the team in person over the past two years.
The other McGill single went to defenceman Vincent Barnard, who made it 2-0 on a nifty deke capped by a top-corner backhanded shot. It was the second of the campaign for Barnard who was sprung free with a pass off the stick of all-star centre Cedric McNicoll, an elite playmaker who had two helpers and now ranks third in the OUA scoring race with 25 points, including 19 assists in 15 contests;
Ryan Van Stralen and Michael Lomas replied for the Ravens after McGill had taken an insurmountable four-goal lead. Van Stralen’s marker, on the powerplay, snapped the Ravens’ five-game, 0-for-29 slump with the man-advantage.
Francis Dupuis took the loss between the pipes for the Ravens and dropped to 5-3. He was beaten six times on 17 shots, including that fateful middle stanza when he conceded five goals on only six shots.
McGill resumes play on Jan. 4, when they host third-place UQTR (11-2-2) in a 4 p.m. start. The Ravens return to action on Jan. 6 at Queen’s.
Carleton 2 at McGill 6
(Saturday, November 29, 2014 – McConnell Arena)
GOALS BY PERIOD:
Carleton 0-2-0 — 2
McGill 0-5-1 — 6
Penalties-Brunelle Mcg (high sticking dble minor), 7:31; Bamford Carl (slashing), 12:33; Delisle-Houde Mcg (slashing), 16:46.
1, McGill, David Rose 9 (McNicoll, Delisle-Houde), 1:40.
2, McGill, Vincent Barnard 2 (McNicoll, Delisle-Houde), 7:26.
3, McGill, Neal Prokop 3 (Le Sieur), 8:49.
4, McGill, Marc-Olivier Vachon 2 (Le Sieur, Brunelle), 10:49.
5, Carleton, Ryan Van Stralen 3 (West , Billingsley), 13:27 (PP).
6, Carleton, Michael Lomas 2 (Brown, Durocher ), 18:02.
7, McGill, Simon Tardif-Richard 5 (Prokop, Pompei), 18:34.
Penalties-Tardif-Richard Mcg (hooking), 2:52; Barnard Mcg (hooking), 4:26; Bonneau Mcg (interference), 13:06; Rose Mcg (hooking), 14:49.
8, McGill, Marc-Olivier Vachon 3 (Le Sieur, Laporte), 11:52.
Penalties-Durocher Carl (interference), 4:55; Brown Carl (hooking), 11:11; Prokop Mcg (slashing), 11:16.
Shots on Goal-
Carleton 11-20-20 — 51.
McGill 4-6-7 — 17.
Power Play Opportunities-
Carleton 1 / 8;
McGill 0 / 3.
Carleton, Francis Dupuis (L, 5-3-0, 17 shots-11 saves; 60:00).
McGill, Jacob Gervais-Chouinard (W, 7-2-0, 51 shots-49 saves; 60:00).
Start: 7:04 PM
End: 9:18 PM
Referees-Alexandre Garon, Alexandre Cote.
Linesmen-Maxime Chaput, Guillaume Brunelle.