Axemen hand No. 1 ranked UNB first loss of season
Steeves Stars in Goal for Acadia
WOLFVILLE, N.S. – The Acadia Axemen (9-5-1) defeated the first place UNB Varsity Reds (12-1-2) 2-1, handing the V-Reds their first regulation loss of the season and snapping their eight-game winning streak. Axemen goaltender Robert Steeves (Moncton, N.B.) had a stellar game, giving Acadia a win against the U Sports No. 1 ranked team in the country.
Acadia struck first in a fast paced first period. Fourth year defenseman Geoff Schemitsch (Thornhill, Ont.) took a slap shot from the point that was redirected by forward Michael Clarke (Halifax, N.S), to put the Axemen up 1-0 on the power-play.
UNB responded roughly six minutes later, at the beginning of a four-minute penalty kill, when fifth year V-Reds forward, Rob Mignardi (Richmond Hill, Ont.), sped past the defenseman and ripped a low wrist shot past Axemen goaltender, Robert Steeves.
By periods end, UNB led in shots, 11-9, with the game tied at 1-1 and the Axemen carrying a power-play over into the second.
The second period was an exciting, penalty ridden affair, as the teams combined for 20-minutes of penalties.
Acadia made up for not capitalizing on their initial 5-on-3 to start the second frame, when third year forward Remy Giftopoulos (Ancaster, Ont.) scored on the power-play a minute before the halfway mark of the second. Giftopoulos picked up Clarke’s rebound off of the right pad of UNB goaltender Etienne Marcoux (Terrebone, Que.) and flipped it up over his right shoulder.
Steeves made a number of amazing saves in the second to prevent sure goals by UNB. A particular highlight was a Kevin Pillar-esque Superman dive across the crease to rob a one-time shot on a UNB man-advantage.
Heading into the third, the Axemen were down in shots 25-12, but leading 2-1.
Neither team was able to score during the third, but both teams continued their penalty troubles, with the teams combining for 20 minutes of penalties, and 56 minutes for the game. Acadia went 2-for-9 on the power-play, while UNB went 0-for-11 on the night.
Steeves received the Subway First Star of the Night, while Varsity Reds forward, Cameron Brace (Markham, Ont.) and Axemen forward, Michael Clarke, took home second and third star, respectively.
Robert Steeves was a standout for the Axemen, saving 38 of 39 shots, while his UNB counterpart, Etienne Marcoux turned aside 12 of 14 shots
The Axemen hit the ice again Saturday night at 7:00 p.m. in Wolfville, against the UPEI Panthers. UNB will head to Halifax to take on the Saint Mary’s Huskies at 7:00 p.m.
Provided by Josh Foote, Acadia Athletics Sports Information.