It wasn’t the most exciting match, but in the end, the Remparts got the score they wanted in the first match of the quarter-final against Rimouski Océanic.
Patrick Roy’s men won 4-0 to lead 1-0 in their best of five series.
After a difficult week punctuated by a flu outbreak in the locker room, Roy said he was satisfied with the response of his players.
“I’m very happy. Of course it’s not easy because we didn’t train a lot. Before the match, we said we wanted to make the attendance short and at the end, except for Theo [Rochette], who played roughly 19 minutes, all were used up for 15 or 16 minutes. We wanted to make sure we had the energy from start to finish. Defensively, we didn’t give much away in the first two halves, which allowed us to buy time, and again, goals came from almost everyone. »
The first thirty minutes of gameplay didn’t provide much for the fans gathered at the Videotron Center to eat. In the middle of the second period, the Remparts had only 11 shots, and the Océanic seven.
But the twelfth shot was a good fit for Patrick Roy’s men. Well positioned at the top of the confrontation zone, Mikael Hochette hit a quick and accurate throw that gave Patrick Hammerla no chance.
“In the first round, we had a lot of shots. On Monday night, it was a tough match and they did a good job defensively, analyzing the first scorer of the match. They play very defensively and it’s hard to get into the box. The first goal was good and then it became even better.”
After his goal, the Red Devils doubled their lead before the end of the engagement thanks to their fourth streak. Zachary Gravel and Xavier Fillon joined forces at the back of the area to lead Kassem Judit’s first goal. The latter was playing his first match in the playoffs due to the absence of Davis Cooper, the only player on the sidelines after the outbreak of the flu with the Red Devils.
Then Connor Frennette scored a lucky goal early in the third half, destroying any chance of a return for Oceanic, then Theo Rochette completed the scoring with a superb goal, in a breakout, making it 4-0.
Fabio Iacopo, author of 17 saves, collected the closing. Like William Russo, Roy had been challenged prior to the series. The coach wanted his guards to be better than they were in the first round.
“I love challenges,” commented the Montreal goalkeeper. I want to play hockey and have fun. I will definitely fight. »
back to earth
On the peripheral side, they moved from one emotional extreme to the other within 48 hours. On Thursday, they made a surprise by eliminating the Saint-Jean Sea Dogs, and on Sunday, they had to prepare for their first game against the Remparts.
Coach Serge Beausoleil noted, “I didn’t hate our start in the game. On the other hand, when you go too far in your feelings, it’s very difficult to come back. We did well in the first half of the game, but we were playing with five defenders and the third and fourth goals, because we have two strikers.” They helped the defence. We stretched the rubber band a little bit.”
The latter assures him: even if they are paralyzed and do not have time to return to the ground after the victory in the first round, they should not be beaten.
“You have to recharge the batteries quickly, but don’t count on us throwing in the towel. We have proud guys who will give their all. We are up against a good hockey machine that took first place in the standings. They didn’t steal it! They played hockey well and it will be up to us to play better.” »
- Game two of the series will take place on Monday evening at the Videotron Center.
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