Acadia uses final weekend to prep for playoffs

The Acadia Axemen have secured a first round bye in the AUS playoffs. With two games left to play in the regular season, the Axemen have an 18-8-2 record, good for 38 points, 6 more than 3rd place Saint Mary’s. The Axemen clinched the bye last weekend earning a point in a 4-3 overtime shootout loss to the Moncton Aigles Bleus.

Coach Darren Burns is pleased with earning the bye saying, “I believe our team should feel really good about reaching one of their goals of securing a bye. There is no doubt that we needed the time for some guys to get ready to play and back in our lineup.”

The Axemen have battled injuries all season but have continued to find a way to win through a strong defensive game, great goaltending, and a knack to find the back of the net.

Acadia has the 2nd most goals in the AUS, tied with SMU with 104, trailing only UNB who have amassed 143 goals. Meanwhile at the other end of the ice, the Axemen have given up the 2nd lowest number of goals against this season, with just 85, trailing only UNB’s 53 goals against.

2nd year netminder, Logan Flodell has been stellar in the Axemen net this season with a 15-8 record, leading the conference with a .918 save percentage.

Meanwhile, Cristiano Digiacinto continues to have a breakout season, tied for the AUS lead in goals with 19, even with UdeM’s St-Cyr. Digiacinto has an impressive 36 points in 28 games and a +13 rating, having also amassed 80 minutes in penalties on the season.

Coach Burns looks forward to the playoffs and his team’s preparation adding, “The playoffs are an exciting time. As a coaching staff we are eager to see what our team is capable of. We really haven’t had an opportunity to see how good we can be since early September during practices. We still have two games left where we must work hard to improve our game. It’s important not to overlook this weekend. We have lots to works on over the next couple of weeks in preparation for the playoffs.  This practice time will be crucial as the intensity and speed of the playoffs compared to the regular season is at a completely different level. If you’re not ready to go, you get left behind. That’s just how good this league is.”

The 1st round playoff matchups remain undecided heading into the last weekend of the regular season, with Dalhousie being eliminated from contention.Read more »

McFadden with 3 points for Acadia

WOLFVILLE N.S – The Universite de Moncton Aigles Bleus left the Andrew H. McCain Arena with a win 4-3 overtime-shootout win over the home Acadia Axemen. The overtime loss earns the Axemen one point in the standings – clinching the second place in the AUS standings and a quarterfinal bye.

Acadia’s Garrett McFadden was first to find the back of the net 4:21 into the game when his pass aimed for a teammate at the side of the goal hit a UdeM player’s skate and found its way past the foot of goaltender Etienne Montpetit. The powerplay goal was assisted by TJ Fergus and Owen MacDonald.

The powerplay remained hot for the Axemen as Stephen Harper doubled the lead about two minutes later on a 5-on-3 break. After receiving a McFadden pass just below the goal line, he patiently found his way to a shooting angle and fired it to the far side past the blocker of Montpetit. Cristiano Digiacinto also assisted the goal.

Les Aigles Bleus brought the game back within one with 4:55 remaining in the opening period. Maxime St-Cyr’s one-time slapshot hit an Acadia penalty killer before finding its way past Logan Flodell. The 5-on-3 powerplay goal was assisted by Vincent Lanoue and Samuel Guilbault.

Moncton was not done there. The same three players combined to tie the game within 30 seconds of the last goal. This time it was Samuel Guilbault who found the net, tapping in a pass through the five-hole of Flodell for yet another powerplay goal.Read more »

Corneil & MacDougall with Acadia goals

WOLFVILLE N.S. –The visiting UNB Reds came away from victorious over the home Acadia Axemen, winning by a score of 4-2 and extend their winning streak to 11 while ending Acadia’s home game winning streak of 11.

The Axemen were the first team on the scoresheet. Johnny Corneil picked up the marker after finishing off a shorthanded 2 on 1 break by beating Reds goalie Samuel Harvey with a backhand through the five-hole. The goal was assisted by Rodney Southam and Tate Olsen.

The rest of the high-flying first period saw a bulk of chances at both ends, but no more goals. The Axemen led 1-0 after 20 minutes but trailed UNB’s 13-10 shots on goal advantage.

The second frame was a scoreless one, the main highlight coming from Axemen goaltender Logan Flodell who robbed UNB’s Tyler Boland with a flashy glove save on a one-timer in the slot. Even with numerous powerplay opportunities for both the Reds and the Axemen, neither team was able to find the back of the net and the score remained 1-0 for the home team.

Within the first two minutes of the third, UNB tied up the game at one.

Kris Bennett found a loose puck in front of the goal and showed great patience to maneuver around the goalie before sliding the puck past the outstretched Logan Flodell. The goal was shorthanded.Read more »

Digiacinto with 3 goals, 1 assist in Acadia win

CHARLOTTETOWN, PEI – The Acadia Axemen picked up a valuable win despite a strong UPEI Panthers comeback on Friday.  

Acadia (18-7-1) did most of their work in the first period and carried a 5-1 lead into the intermission, but had to fight off a strong second and third period from UPEI (8-13-3). 

This loss continues UPEI’s four-game losing streak as their discipline haunted them throughout the game. 

A UPEI turnover in front of their own net led to an early Acadia goal by Johnny Corneil; Cristiano Digiacinto and Jordy Stallard assisted with 15:51 remaining. 

Five minutes later, Acadia’s Owen MacDonald scored on a rebound from a Maurizio Colella shot on the powerplay. 

Acadia scored again less than 30 seconds later as the Subway Player of the Game Cristiano Digiacinto scored his first of the evening. 

UPEI called a timeout in the first period in hopes of turning the tides. 

The Panthers finally answered back with a five-on-three powerplay goal from points leader Kameron Kielly, with Kyle Maksimovich picking up his first assist of the game. 

Penalties continued to hurt the Panthers late in the first, as Digiacinto scored his second of the night on a five-on-three power play. 

Acadia’s powerplay was not done either Colella scored on the man advantage with 20 seconds remaining. Owen MacDonald picked up his second point of the game with an assist on the goal. 

Read more »

Flodell brilliant in Acadia net with 36 saves

(Halifax, NS) In AUS men’s hockey action, the Saint Mary’s Huskies hosted the Acadia Axemen at the Dauphinee Centre and two power play goals helped propel the Huskies to a 4-2 win.

The Axemen were looking to get in control early, using regroups in the neutral zone to great effect. The Huskies, meanwhile, had a couple sloppy defensive plays that led to scoring chances for the Axemen. First was a dangerous pass through the middle on their breakout that was picked off by an Axemen forechecker; shortly after, a giveaway in front of the net gave Ryan Foss (Oakville, ON) an opportunity to open the scoring. Huskies goalie Eric Brassard (St. Hubert, QC) had to be sharp early to keep the game scoreless.

Once the Huskies started getting their feet moving, the game evened out. With a couple back-to-back power plays, they generated chances with shots from the point and opened the scoring halfway through the period.

On the man advantage, Stephen Johnson (Moncton, NB) came into the zone down the right wing. The rebound from his sharp angle shot popped straight out in the slot to Keith Getson (Bridgewater, NS), who put home the rebound. Anthony Repaci (Toronto, ON) also assisted.

The Axemen responded with just under four minutes left in the first frame. In a pretty passing play down low, the puck danced between Jordy Stallard (Brandon, MB) and Mason McCarty (Blackie, AB) before getting dished to Cristiano Digiacinto (Hamilton, ON), who had an open net for the Axemen’s first goal.

After an Acadia power play, the first period ended with the teams tied 1-1, each with 10 shots.Read more »

Digiacinto scores in Acadia loss

MONCTON, N.B. – Goals by Vincent Millette (Gabriel Vanier, Jeremy Hannah) and Maxime St-Cyr (Samuel Guilbault, Robbie Graham), 33 seconds apart midway in the first period, lifted the Université de Moncton Aigles Bleus (1086-0=26pts, 4th position) to a 2-1 win over Acadia University Axemen (17-61-0=35pts, 2nd position) at the J.-Louis-Lévesque Arena on Saturday in an Atlantic University Sport men’s hockey game in front of over 525 spectators. 

The Judes Vallée coached team then held on in the second and third periods for the win. Winning goaltender Étienne Montpetit made 28 saves compared to 24 for his opponent, Logan Flodell. Cristiano Digiacinto (Stephen Harper, Liam Maaskant), in the eight minute of the third, had reduced to lead to a single goal.

Millette scored his first university career goal. Moncton was for on the power play and Acadia, 0 for 4. The Blue and Gold ended a four game losing streak while Acadia has lost its last three outings. 

Acadia plays Saint Mary’s on Wednesday iHalifax while the Aigles Bleus play two home games next weekend, against the X-Men Friday and the Tigers, Saturday.

Provided by Moncton Communications. 

Flodell with 38 saves for Acadia

RECAP BY: Andy Campbell/UNB Athletics

(FREDERICTON, NB) The U SPORTS No. 1 UNB Reds scored a 2-1 shootout win over the No. 6 Acadia Axemen, in an exciting game at UNB’s Aitken Centre, on Friday night.

Kris Bennett (Brampton, ON) scored the Reds’ shootout winner, and was named the Subway Player of the Game.

“I thought, if I had a little pump fake, it might fake him out and it did,” said Bennett. “Fortunately, I’m lucky and I really think we deserved that win, one way or another.”

“Credit to the guys, especially Sam Harvey in net. It was a huge win,” he said.

The visitors struck first when Acadia’s Jordy Stallard (Brandon, MB) jammed home a loose puck at the side of the Reds net at 4:14 of the first period.

The Reds drew even mid-way through the opening frame.Read more »

Colella with goal for Axemen in loss

ANTIGONISH, NS – Fourth-year forward Matt Needham (Kamloops, BC) scored with 1:09 left in the game to lift the StFX X-Men to a 2-1 victory over the U SPORTS No. 5 ranked Acadia Axemen Friday night at the Charles V. Keating Centre.

The loss was only the fifth of the season for the AUS first place Axemen (17-5-0). The X-Men improve to 8-10-3, and are currently tied for fifth place with UPEI. 

The teams played a scoreless first period though both had ample scoring opportunities as they played a physical opening 20 minutes. Acadia had a slight 13-11 edge in shots. 

The X-Men wasted no time getting on the scoreboard in the second period as Will Bower (Saint John, NB) tallied 28 seconds in. He was in the crease to tuck a rebound past Logan Flodell (Regina, SK) after he saved a point shot from Adam Holwell (St. John’s, NL). 

The lone goal held up as the only one scored in the middle period. 

The game got more physical as both squads took penalties late in the period and had their chances on the power play, including a brief 5-on-3 for the Axemen 

Shots were 18-8 in favour of the X-Men in the second period as they held onto the one-goal lead after 40 minutes. 

Read more »

Owen MacDonald with a hat trick to lead Acadia

WOLFVILLE N.S. – The U SPORTS No. 5 ranked Acadia Axemen continued their hot start to the new decade with a convincing 6-2 victory over the visiting Dalhousie Tigers and extending their winning streak to seven.

Only 1:14 into the first the visiting Dalhousie Tigers took an early hold on the game. Captain Colton Heffley got his stick on a Connor Welsh shot in the slot to redirect the puck past Acadia goaltender Dawson Carty for his first of the year.

The Axemen bounced back quickly and 4:13 into the opening period the teams drew even after a Rodney Southam shot was rifled off the post, before bouncing off the Dalhousie goalie’s back and into the net. The goal was assisted by Maurizio Colella and Morgan Nauss. Acadia was not done there. Just 16 seconds later Acadia’s Owen MacDonald gave the home team a 2-1 lead. MacDonald followed his linemates up the ice charging towards the net before stuffing home a Cristiano Digiacinto rebound right in front of goal. Stephen Harper also assisted.

Johnny Corneil grabbed the third goal of the night for the Axemen with 6:03 remaining in the first frame. Some great vision by Jack Flaman lead to Corneil’s chance in the slot which he finished swiftly with a quick move to the backhand and sliding the puck through the goaltender’s five-hole.Read more »

Flaman nets 3, Flodell stops 38 in win

Photo Credit: Janessa Hogan

By Ron Annear & Thomas Becker

Acadia’s Jack Flaman scored twice in the third period, as the Axemen took down the UPEI Panthers 5-3.

Flaman finished with a natural hat trick, scoring his first goal late in the first followed by the two in the third. Owen MacDonald recorded a goal and an assist, while Cristiano Digiancinto also connected on a goal. Eric Henderson had two assists in the win.

MacDonald opened the scoring at 2:13 of the first off a Panther miscue in front of their net to take an early lead. However, that lead was short-lived, as Owen Headrick fired a shot from the point three minutes later to tie the game at one.

The Axemen (16-4-0) reclaimed the lead on a shorthanded Digiacinto on a feed from assisted by Liam Maaskant at 11:46. Flaman scored Acadia’s third goal of the period with just 59 seconds remaining.

UPEI (7-9-3) carried the play for most of the period and broke through at 12:17 when rookie forward Jordan Maher gathered a rebound off Conor MacEachern’s quick shot from the point and put it past Logan Flodell. In just his second game with the Panthers, rookie defenceman Matt Brassard recorded his first AUS goal at 15:52. Kyle Maksimovich and Kameron Kielly were credited with the assists.Read more »