The Juniors enjoyed a successful weekend which started on Friday as the team earned a victory over the #1 ranked Saint John Sea Dogs by a score of 4-1. On Saturday afternoon Montreal defeated the Val D'or Foreurs convincingly 6-2.
The victory over the Sea Dogs is significant because the Juniors (ranked #2 in the "Q" by The Hockey News Magazine) now know they're are able to challenge Saint John (ranked #1) for top spot in the league. It is important to note that both Montreal and Saint John were each missing key players who were still participating at NHL training camps.
The Juniors win over Val D'or showed just how dominant the team can be. The shot count after the first period of play was 19-4 in favor of Montreal. After three periods of play the Juniors finished with an overwhelming 48 shots compared to Val'D'or's 12.
The 3 stars for Montreal this weekend were:
1. Xavier Ouellet: The 17 year old defenseman showed that he's able to produce offense. Ouellet earned 5 assists and a + 4 plus/minus rating during the two games.
2. Etienne Marcoux: Another 17 year old, Montreal's young goaltender managed to allow only 3 goals on 36 shots, translating into a .916 save percentage and a 1.50 GAA. The keeper was especially good against Saint John where Marcoux made a handful of cross-crease pad saves.
3. Janos Hari (seen in photo): The "Rat", as they call him, made his season debut for the Juniors this weekend. Against the Sea Dogs we saw the Rat at work. During his first shift he punished Tomas Jurko with a thunderous hit, only seconds after stepping on the ice for his first shift. Against Val D'or, Hari displayed his talent by scoring 2 goals and adding 1 assist. He finished the weekend with a +3 plus/minus rating. Hari left the game with under 10 minutes to play after suffering an apparent knee injury.
The Juniors next two games are at home. They take on ex-Montreal Junior Guillaume Asselin and his Chicoutimi teammates on Friday night. On Sunday the Juniors host the Victoriaville Tigres.
Photo credit: Ron Lemish