No. 7 ranked Axemen post seventh win in a row in 9-8 victory over SMU
Digiacinto racks up 5 points for Acadia
WOLFVILLE, N.S. – The U SPORTS No. 7 ranked Axemen out-scored the visiting Saint Mary’s Huskies 9-8 in a shoot-out that raised a lot of eyebrows following the opening period.
The Axemen quickly began the onslaught of goals early in the opening period. Rodney Southam scored his first goal of the season on a nice feed across a crowded crease from Cristiano Digiacinto at 3:46.
Digiacinto would score his own on a two-on-one with Stephen Harper trailing less than a minute later. Digiacinto dropped it to Harper who then fed it back to Digiacinto for his first of two goals.
Huskie Sam Dunn scored on a lighting wrist shot from the top of the faceoff circle on the man-advantage to close the lead by one.
Stephen Harper replied a minute later with a one-timer from the slot off the feed from Digiacinto from the side of the net to give Acadia a 3-1 lead at the mid-point of the first period.
Keith Getson scored the first of two goals near the end of the opening period from a pass from Mitchell Balmas deep in the corner.
With just over three minutes remaining in the first period, Eric Henderson scored to give the Axemen a 4-2 lead heading into the first intermission.
The scoring continued into the second period. Five additional goals were scored including Maurizio Colella’s breakaway goal that opened the second frame.
The Huskies replied with two goals that were 45 seconds apart beginning at the 8:03 mark with a Mitchell Balmas goal followed by Getson’s second of the night to close the Axemen lead to 5-4.
The Subway Player of the Game, Cristiano Digiacinto added his second goal of the night to push the lead to 6-4 at 14:07 of the second period, but the Huskies responded again less than a minute later to close out the second period in a 6-5 deficit.
Jack Flaman scored the first of two goals in the third frame. Flaman’s goal came at the 2:27 mark of the final frame. Teammate Jordy Stallard added a powerplay goal to give Acadia an 8-5 advantage with less than 10 minutes remaining in regulation time.
Saint Mary’s went back to work when Dawson Theede scored on the powerplay with just under five minutes remaining in the game. Sam King made the game even more interesting as time ran down 3:25 remaining in the final period.
It was Jack Flaman who scored the eventual game-winner with 1:52 remaining in the game when Huskie goalie Xavier Potvin tried to clear the puck from behind the net around the boards. Digiacinto picked up the puck along the boards and fed it to a waiting Flaman for the one-time shot and goal.
Trailing 9-7 in the closing minutes of the game, the Huskies pulled the goalie to get the extra man and scored at 19:33 to come within a goal of tying the game. The Axemen would hold onto the 9-8 lead for their seventh straight win.
“I have never seen a game like that. The score was 9-8 but it definitely could have been 13-12. I am just glad it ended the way it did. Our big focus this year has been ‘find ways to win’ no matter what the situation of the game is and I think we are really doing a good job at it. It’s just another one to put in the win column,” noted Jack Flaman following the Axemen’s seventh straight win.
Both goalies remained in their respective nets for the entire game. Potvin stopped 33 shots, while Logan Flodell stopped 23.
The Axemen improve to 7-1-0 to remain in first place in the AUS standings and will head to the Island to take on UPEI on Saturday. The Huskies drop to 4-3-0 and head home until next week’s road trip to StFX on Wednesday.