Axemen add Enfield, NS forward to program

The Acadia Axemen hockey program are proud to announce the commitment of Liam Kidney to the program starting in the 2022-23 season.

We asked Liam why Acadia was his University of choice and what Axemen fans can expect from his game in the Fall, he said, “Acadia is an amazing school with a second to none reputation for being one of the best post secondary schools in Canada. And second the great development and reputation Acadia sports has in developing players and the amazing community support your receive playing for Acadia. It was a really simple choice.”

I would say I am a hard hitting forward, who can be relied on in any situation. Both in the offensive zone and defensive zone, on the power play and penalty kill. A player that works hard in any situation and does what it takes to win.”

Kidney, from Enfield, NS, is a 6’0” forward who is currently in his fifth season in the QMJHL. He had 28 points in 38 games last year with the Cape Breton Eagles, his third full season in the QMJHL, as his first season he was called up for 5 games with Cape Breton. Coming into the current season he had career totals of 24 goals and 38 assists in 139 major junior games. Liam is currently playing with the Acadie-Bathurst Titan and at the time of the article he has notched 3 goals in 8 games. He is playing in Bathurst alongside his younger brother Riley, who was drafted by the Montreal Canadiens in the 2nd round of this past year’s NHL entry draft.

Acadia Head Coach Darren Burns is excited to add Kidney to next year’s lineup saying, “Liam is going to be a tailor made AUS hockey player. We are extremely familiar with this player as he has played with our spring program at various ages. His grit, speed, and relentless work ethic will be an excellent addition for us. He is a natural born leader who doesn’t know the word quit. We believe he will be a player that will surprise many in this league because of commitment. He is a 200-foot player, who will lead and do whatever it takes to make his team successful.”

The Axemen also announced this week the committment of Bailey Peach to the program for the Fall of 2022, as the team gets an early jump on recruiting.

Corneil nets two in Acadia loss

WOLFVILLE, N.S. – It was the end of a two-game winning streak for the Axemen on Wednesday night, as the Dalhousie Tigers (4-4-1) snapped a three-game losing skid in a 6-3 win over the host Acadia Axemen (4-6-0).

Despite falling 3-1 early in the game, Dalhousie scored five unanswered goals, including two from Subway First Star of the Game Derek Gentile, who netted the eventual game-winner with 0.9 seconds to play in the second and added an insurance marker at the start of the third.

Dalhousie opened the scoring exactly 1:30 into the first period on a rebound goal from Darien Kielb.

After a scramble in front of the Acadia net, Kielb picked up the puck in the slot and threw it past Axemen goaltender Logan Flodell to make it 1-0.

The second star of the night Johnny Corneil was the difference-maker in the first frame, notching a pair of goals, with the first tying the game and the second giving Acadia their first lead of the game.

Corneil’s first goal came on a frantic play in front of the net, as he scooped up the puck by the goal-line and spun around to fire it past the scrambling Dalhousie goalie.

As for his second goal, Corneil picked up his own rebound in the slot and fired a wrist shot over the reaching glove of the Tigers netminder.

To cap off the scoring for the period, Mason McCarty finished off a passing play for his fourth in the last three games.

Shots were even at 15-15 in the first period.

It was a big comeback period for the Tigers, as they put up three unanswered goals in the second frame.

The first goal was started by a point shot off the back boards, which came to the other side of the net for the third star of the night Barret Kirwin to chip In.

Josh Wainman evened the score with 2:30 left in the second period on a shot through a screen from the left face-off circle that fooled Flodell.

Derek Gentile recaptured the lead for the Tigers with 0.9 seconds left in the second period with a power-play marker.

Gentile nabbed the puck away from the Acadia defender holding it in the corner and came out in front of the net where he squeaked a backhander under the arm of Flodell to take a 4-3 lead into the third.

Dalhousie held a 34-27 lead in shots by the end of the second period.

Acadia had chances in the third – including Peyton Hoyt sneaking into the Dalhousie zone completely alone – but the Axemen could not capitalize on any opportunities.

Dalhousie meanwhile added two goals, a clean finish from Gentile on a cross-crease pass in front of the Acadia net and an empty-netter from Chandler Yakimowicz, to cement their victory.

It was a busy night for both goalies, as Flodell turned aside 36 of 41 shots, while his Dalhousie counterpart Connor Hicks stopped 44 of 47 on the night.

The Axemen return to the ice on Friday, Nov. 5 where they will start a five-game road trip in Antigonish to take on the StFX X-Men.

Acadia will return to home ice on Friday, Nov. 26 to play the UNB Varsity Reds.

Dalhousie takes on the Saint Mary’s Huskies this Friday as well. The puck drop for all games is 7:00 pm.

 

Contributed by Josh Foote, Acadia Athletics Communications

Falmouth native to join the program for Fall 2022

The Acadia Axemen are proud to announce the commitment of Falmouth, NS native Bailey Peach to the Acadia hockey program beginning in the fall of the 2022-23 season.

We asked Bailey why he chose Acadia, he responded saying, “Committing to Acadia to be an Acadia Axemen just felt right, I wanted to have the opportunity to continue my hockey career on a competitive AUS hockey team. I spent many years attending the Acadia Axemen skills camps as a young player and I want to be able to give back to the community.  I’ve been coached by Burnsy in Minor Hockey and his leadership and compassion to improve players is the best you can ask for.”

Acadia Axemen Head Coach Darren Burns is looking forward to having the Falmouth native in the lineup next fall saying, “We are very excited to have Bailey joining our program in September. To have a player of Bailey’s caliber join Acadia, after playing in our minor hockey association, is tremendous. We are very familiar with Bailey as a person and he has always had an excellent attitude since a young age. He is an extremely intelligent player who can score goals with a lot of offensive upside. His vision and his thinking are at a very high level. He will no doubt be a player who displays a high intelligence level and we feel he will adapt quickly to this league.”

The 5’10” forward started his major junior career with the Sherbrooke Phoenix after being selected 11th overall at the 2017 Quebec Major Junior Hockey League draft. He played three-and-a-half seasons in Sherbrooke, Que., before being traded to the Charlottetown Islanders in December 2020.

With a difficult season and a half for all junior players due to the Covid-19 pandemic, last spring Peach had a goal and three assists in eight playoff games to help the Islanders make it to the deciding game of the semifinals before losing to the eventual champion Victoriaville Tigres.

Bailey’s top junior season to date was in 2019-20 where he scored 19 goals and 46 points in 52 games with Sherbrooke. His career totals in the QMJHL were 107 points in 184 regular season games.

This fall, with Charlottetown already icing the maximum three 20 year olds on their roster, Bailey joined the Victoria Royals of the WHL as an overager.  At the time of writing this article, Peach is having a strong campaign on the west coast, already with 9 points in 12 games.

When we asked Peach about his style of play and what fans can expect from him next fall, he said, “I look forward to meeting all the Acadia fans as they are a big part of the game. Fans can expect me to bring a strong work ethic, positivity, high energy and passion to the team. I am a strong two-way forward that can bring offence and also take care of the defensive zone. Also, I’m excited for the opportunity to bring my game back home to the East Coast next Fall!”

Acadia makes it two wins in a row

Wolfville, N.S. – Make it two straight wins for the Acadia Axemen (4-5-0), who snagged a 5-2 win over the UPEI Panthers (3-4-1) on Saturday night. The Axemen never trailed in the game thanks to solid offensive performance and a strong performance from Logan Flodell in the net.

It only took 19 seconds for Acadia to get on the board, thanks to a goal from Subway First Star of the Night Cole Rafuse.

Rafuse broke in on a 2-on-1 with Nick Deakin-Poot and redirected a pass in front of the net past the left pad of the UPEI goalie, allowing Acadia to jump out to a quick 1-0 lead.

Much like the first goal, the Axemen doubled their lead on a redirected pass in front of the Panthers net.

TJ Fergus cut in behind a UPEI defender in front of the net and tipped a pass from a streaking Mason McCarty into the bottom left corner of the net to make it 2-0.

At the end of the first period, Acadia held a 10-9 lead in shots.

UPEI answered back in the second with two goals but came out of the period down 3-2.

Both Panthers’ goals mirrored the Axemen goals from the first frame.

TJ Shea notched a goal 4:48 into the period and less than five minutes later, the Panthers tied the game on a marker from the second star of the night Kyle Makismovich.

Both goals came on cross-crease passes that got the Axemen goalie moving from one side of his net to the other.

A four-minute kneeing penalty was the difference-maker in the period, as Acadia reclaimed their lead in the final minute of the second on a power-play goal from the third star of the night, Luke Zazula.

Zazula carried the puck from the Axemen zone, stepped over the UPEI blueline – in the middle of four Panthers defenders – and rifled a hard snapshot into the top left corner of the net for the tiebreaker.

Despite trailing in scoring, UPEI held a 19-17 shot lead going into the final frame.

It was a tight final frame with chances from both sides, but Acadia doubled up the Panthers with five minutes left in the game on a goal from Mason McCarty.

McCarty sped into the Panthers zone on a partial break, took a pass off the boards from Adam McMaster, and lifted the puck into the top right corner for the 4-2 lead.

The game was stopped for some roughhousing late in the third, as the teams combined for 10 minutes in individual roughing penalties.

Acadia sealed the victory with a last-minute empty-net goal from Peyton Hoyt.

Logan Flodell stopped 32 of 34 shots for the Axemen, while his UPEI counterpart Lucas Fitzpatrick turned aside 21 of 25 shots on the night.

Acadia returns to play on Wednesday, Nov. 3 against the Dalhousie Tigers, while the Panthers go up against the Moncton Aigles Bleus on Wednesday as well. The puck drop for both games is 7:00 pm.

Provided by Josh Foote, Acadia Athletics Communications Office

Flodell stops 48 of 50 shots for Win

WOLFVILLE, N.S. – The Acadia Axemen (3-5-0) snapped a three-game losing streak on Wednesday night, securing a 3-2 OT win over the Saint Mary’s Huskies (3-3-1). Forwards Adam McMaster and Subway First Star of the Game Mason McCarty scored all three of Acadia’s goals, with McCarty scoring the first and last goals of the game.

Despite taking an early lead, the Axemen fell behind in a 2-1 deficit to Saint Mary’s after the first period.

Acadia got themselves on the board early in the game, notching a goal in the opening two minutes of the game.

Mason McCarty finished a pass from Adam McMaster in front of the net, lifting the puck over the right pad of the Huskies goalie to make it 1-0.

However, the Acadia lead was short-lived, as Jacob Durham finished a cross-zone pass from Mitchell Balmas, beating the Logan Flodell high glove to tie the game at 1-1.

With 9 seconds left in the period, Joel Bishop gave Saint Mary’s their first lead of the game. Bishop scooped up a pass in front of the net and tucked it five-hole to end the period 2-1.

At the end of the opening period, Saint Mary’s held a 10-8 shot lead.

Adding to his assist in the first, Adam McMaster put up the lone goal of the second period, tying the game at 2-2 heading into the third.

McMaster snuck in behind the Saint Mary’s defenders in the offensive zone and got a lucky bounce after the puck hit a Huskies leg and rolled out to McMaster.

To tie the game, McMaster cut in tight on the Huskies goalie and squeaked the puck under the goalie’s blocker.

“Obviously it’s huge. The last three games were pretty tough. We haven’t come out of the gate very well and that’s what we were preaching today. Even though we are short-bodied, we really battled today,” McMaster noted when asked how important the win was tonight.

“Same as we do every day. A little bit more video this week and worked on things we needed to touch up, especially things from last week we got back to doing earlier in the preseason and the first part of the regular season,” said McMaster when asked what the team did differently this week in practice.

Saint Mary’s continued to hold a lead in shots going into the third, up 28-20 in that department.

While there were chances on both sides in the final frame, neither team was able to crack the tie, leading to a 3-on-3 OT to decide the winner.

With 1:23 left to play in OT, McCarty notched a power-play marker from inside the blue-line. McCarty took a pass at the point and ripped a shot into the top left corner of the net to seal the victory for the Axemen.

Logan Flodell had a busy night in the net, turning aside 48 of 50 shots for the third star of the night honours. His Huskies counterpart Matt Welsh stopped 30 of 33 shots on the night.

Saint Mary’s forward Sam King was named the second star.

The Axemen take to the ice again on Saturday, Oct. 30 at home against the UPEI Panthers, while Saint Mary’s next faces off against UPEI on Friday, Oct. 29. The puck drop for both games is 7:00 p.m.