GRAND FALLS – The Rapids lost a great opportunity to crawl back into contention for a playoff spot, falling 3-1 Wednesday night on home ice to the Fredericton Red Wings. It was a valiant effort for the Rapids, especially in the final twenty minutes of play, but they came up short after falling behind 3-0 early in the third period.

The turning point of the game occurred at the 13th minute of play of the first period when the Red Wings scored two goals in a span of only 5 seconds.

Andrew Gweon, Declan MacEachern and Alexis Pellerin scored for the visitors. Alexis Cournoyer was the only player to find the back of the net for Grand Falls who lost for a 4th consecutive time.

The Red Wings were first to get on the board, scoring two goals in quick succession. Andrew Gweon gave the visitors the lead at 13:42 and immediately following the centre ice faceoff, Declan MacEachern came storming into Rapids’ territory and sent a wrist shot from the top of the circle to give the Red Wings a 2-0 lead. MacEachern’s goal came only 5 seconds after the first tally, at 13:47.

The Rapids had one power play opportunity in the opening frame but could not cash in.

Fredericton dominated 10 to 9 in shots on goal through twenty minutes of play.

Both goaltenders stole the show in the middle frame, making huge key saves while keeping their opponents scoreless. Gio DiMattia was solid between the pipes for the Rapids while Mathias Savoie had to deal with the line of Dominic Leblanc, Alexis Cournoyer and Yannic Bastarache who had the best scoring chances for Grand Falls in the second period.

No goals were scored in the period as shots on goal were 22 to 15 in favour of Fredericton after forty minutes of play.

The Rapids came out pressing in the third period, sending a number of quality shots on net. It was however the Red Wings who added to their lead early in the frame on a beautiful end to end rush by Alex Pellerin who finished things off by sending a perfect shot into the back of the net for his 10th goal of the season at 2:53.

Nick Tremere’s squad was rewarded for its efforts only seconds following Fredericton’s third goal as Alexis Cournoyer surprised netminder Mathias Savoie with a low shot from a sharp angle, cutting the deficit to two goals. It wasn’t enough for the Rapids however as they were defeated for a 5th time at home this season while losing for a third time in five games at the hands of the Red Wings.

With the victory, Fredericton takes sole possession of second place in the Eastlink North division standings.

The Rapids will play two more games before the holiday break. Friday night, they host the Miramichi Timberwolves (7.30 pm) at the E.&P. Sénéchal Centre before hitting the road on Saturday for a matchup against the division leading Summerside Western Capitals.

Patrick Thibault



*It was Alexis Cournoyer’s 4th goal of the season for Grand Falls. His record this season now stands at 4 goals and 10 assists for a total of 14 points.

*The Rapids finished the game 0 for 3 on the power play while the Red Wings scored once in 4 tries with the man advantage.

*Three stars of the game : 1- Declan MacEachern (FRW); Alexis Cournoyer (GFR); Mathias Savoie (FRW)

*Game attendance : 551 spectators


13:42 FRW Andrew Gweon (5) ASST: Xzander Pierce (5), Zach Bishop (1)
13:47 FRW Declan MacEachern (6) ASST: Nathan Kelly (9)
No Scoring
2:53 FRW Alex Pellerin (10) ASST: None (PP)
3:51 GFR Alexis Cournoyer (4) ASST: Yannic Bastarache (14)