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QMJHL: Mooseheads use special teams to top Olympiques

The Canadian Press

4/5/2013 10:33:07 PM

If the Gatineau Olympiques have any chance against the Number-1 ranked Halifax Mooseheads, it starts by cleaning up their special teams.

Halifax scored five times on the power play and once more shorthanded on Friday en route to a 7-0 victory in Game 1 of their second-round matchup with 13th-seeded Gatineau.

Stefan Fournier had two power-play goals for the Mooseheads while Konrad Abeltshauser, Matthew Boudreau and Darcy Ashley each scored once with the man advantage.

Stephen MacAulay scored shorthanded for Halifax and Jonathan Drouin added another goal at even strength.

The Mooseheads, which finished the regular season with the second-best power play, are scoring at a 36.4% rate while up a man through five post-season games. They are also killing off 92.3% of penalties in the playoffs, which is good for top spot, and leads all clubs with three shorthanded goals. Gatineau currently has the worst power play of any of the eight clubs that made it to the second round while their penalty kill is 12th at just 68.2%.

Halifax finished the game 5 for 9 on the power play while Gatineau failed to score on seven chances with the man advantage.

Nathan MacKinnon recorded his second four-point performance of the post season as he set up four goals, while Fournier tacked on an assist for a three-point night.

Olympiques' forward Simon Tardif-Richard had his six-game point streak halted, recording just two shots on goal and a minus-1 in the loss.

Halifax's Zachary Fucale stopped 20 shots for the first post-season shutout of his career as Gatineau's Robert Steeves picked up the loss after allowing six goals on 25 shots through 40 minutes. Eric Brassard replaced Steeves to start the third period and stopped 5-of-6 shots.

Fucale leads all goaltenders with a 0.80 goals-against average and .956 save percentage in five playoff appearances.

Elsewhere in the QMJHL, it was: Rouyn-Noranda 6, Quebec 1; Baie-Comeau 5, Victoriaville 3 and Blainville-Boisbriand 10, Val-d'Or 1.

At Halifax, with Fournier in the box for goaltender interference, MacAulay scored shorthanded at 2:23 of the first period to give the Mooseheads a 1-0 lead.

Abeltshauser and Fournier each scored on the power play before the 16-minute mark, both set up by MaKinnon, and Boudreau added another goal while up a man at 19:19 to make it 4-0 Halifax after 20 minutes.

Drouin was set up by MacKinnon 1:32 into the second period and then MacKinnon assisted on Fournier's second power-play goal of the game at 15:3, making it 6-0 heading into the third period.

Ashley added one more goal while up a man midway through the third.

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Huskies 6 Remparts 1

At Quebec City, Gabriel Slight and Maxime St-Cyr each scored twice while Alexandre Belanger stopped 25 shots as Rouyn-Noranda downed the Remparts to take a 1-0 series lead in round-two action.

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Drakkar 5 Tigres 3

At Baie-Comeau, Que., Petr Straka had a goal and two assists and Jeremy Gregoire scored twice as the Drakkar defeated Victoriaville in Game 1 of their second-round matchup.

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Armada 10 Foreurs 1

At Boisbriand,Que., eight Armada skaters recording multi-point games including Marc-Olivier Roy and Cedric Paquette, who each had two goals and two assists, as Blainville-Boisrbaind crushed Val-d'Or to go up 1-0 in second-round action.