GRAND FALLS – Marcellus Francis continued his scoring pace by adding two goals while Adam Lecours made 31 saves, helping the Grand Falls Rapids to a 4-1 victory Friday night against the West Kent Steamers.
It was the Rapids’ first win of the season against their division rivals who were entering the game on a five-game winning streak.
The Rapids now return to the .500 mark and total 12 points in the Eastlink North division standings. With Campbellton losing to the Blizzard on Friday night, Grand Falls now has a 1-point lead on the Tigers for sole possession of 4th place.
Despite the three-game suspension handed to forward Jeremy Boulanger, the Rapids still got some contribution up front. Once again, Marcellus Francis had a strong game offensively while Colin Parker picked up two assists.
After a scoreless first period, it was Francis who got Grand Falls on the board at 6:24 of the second period. Nicholas Brennan came in rushing into Steamers’ territory and sent a pass in front of the net to Francis who scored his 3rd of the season.
Then Francis added another goal at the 14-minute mark as he came speeding towards the net, beating netminder Olivier Dallaire with a high shot to give Grand Falls a 2-0 lead.
The Rapids weren’t done yet. After winning the faceoff in West Kent territory, Colin Parker fed a perfect pass in front to Jonah Leard who scored his first of the season only 39 seconds after Francis’ second tally of the contest.
After two periods of play, the Rapids were ahead 3-0 and held a 21 to 18 advantage in shots on goal.
The Rapids added their fourth goal at 2:46 of the third period on Ty Hunter’s one-timer in front of the net. It was also Hunter’s first of the season on a pass from Colin Parker, his second of the night.
The shutout bid for Lecours was foiled on a West Kent power play at the mid-way point of the frame. Alexis Daniel scored his 12th of the season to bring the score to 4-1.
West Kent sent 14 shots on net in the third period compared to only 3 for Grand Falls.
The final tally in shots on goal was 32 to 24 in favour of the Steamers.
It was the Rapids’ only game this weekend. They will return to action next Friday night as they host the Miramichi Timberwolves at the E.&P. Sénéchal Centre.
*Marcellus Francis (2g), Ty Hunter (1g 1a) and Colin Parker (2a) all finished the game with 2 points for the Rapids.
*West Kent scored 1 goal on the power play on 4 PP opportunities.
The Rapids were 0 for 1 with the man advantage.
*Game attendance: 908
*Three stars of the game: 1- Adam Lecours (GFR); 2- Marcellus Francis (GFR); 3- Colin Parker (GFR)
6:24 GFR Marcellus Francis (3) ASST: Nicholas Brennan (4)
14:20 GFR Marcellus Francis (4) ASST: None
14:59 GFR Jonah Leard (1) ASST: Ty Hunter (3), Colin Parker (1)
2:46 GFR Ty Hunter (1) ASST: Colin Parker (2)
10:58 WKS Alexis Daniel (12) ASST: Olivier Beaudoin (10), Cam White (4) (PP