On Oct. 7, the McGill Redmen hockey team (2-0) beat the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières (UQTR) Patriotes (0-1) with a final score of 3-0. The first two periods were a close affair, with chances at both ends. The Redmen maintained a high tempo—employing an effective forecheck that clogged the neutral zone and caused many Patriotes turnovers—but were unable to find the back of the net until the third.
After being outshot 15-7 in the first period, Trois-Rivières managed to show more life in the second. The game remained scoreless heading into the third, with the shot count narrowed to 25-21 for the Redmen.
During the third period, the Redmen finally managed to capitalize on offence, despite encountering some penalty troubles and a shot deficit. Early in the third, junior forward Samuel Hodhod forced a Trois-Rivières turnover in the offensive zone. The puck found its way right to the stick of sophomore forward Samuel Tremblay who scored on the unsuspecting UQTR goaltender. Later in the frame, junior forward Frederic Gamelin managed to jam the puck in to take a 2-0 lead, assisted by Hodhod and junior forward Jerome Verrier. Gamelin also managed a second tally to seal the deal for the Redmen.
Despite the contest’s close nature, McGill remained focused on its play and maintained its level of energy throughout the game.
“It [was] obviously a close game all the way until the end,” freshman forward Keanu Yamamoto said. “[But] we just stuck with our game plan until the end.”
The Redmen were buoyed by the play of sophomore goalie Louis-Philip (LP) Guindon, who made some spectacular saves to keep the Patriotes off the board, especially on the penalty kill.
“Obviously, you’ve got to tip your hat to LP tonight,” Head Coach Kelly Nobes said. “He was very good, very solid, [and had] good rebound control.”
Guindon was awarded the first star of the game, while Gamelin and Tremblay received the second and third stars respectively.
Despite it being early in the season, there is a sense of optimism looking forward. Nathan Chiarlitti, Redmen defender and team captain, shared that sentiment.
“I think the young guys we brought in are really energetic,” Chiarlitti said. “It’s always kind of cool to get young blood on the team. I know it’s early, but it feels like there’s something special here.”
After putting up a 7-0 road win against Royal Military College (RMC) on Oct. 5, Saturday night's game proved that the Redmen have the discipline to manage tougher opponents as well. The Redmen play their next home game at 7 p.m. on Oct. 13 against the Concordia Stingers, as part of McGill’s Homecoming weekend.
Following the first week of the regular season, Nobes expressed his satisfaction with his team’s status.
“We’re a work in progress. We got a young team still, and we [have] a lot of growing to do,” Nobes said. “[…] but that’s a good start for us, [in] the first week of the season to win both games.”
Moment of the Game
On a late penalty kill in the third period, goalie Louis-Philip Guindon made an exceptional blocker save to keep the Patriotes off the board.
“I think you can always improve on everything, right? Just getting better every day, that’s what the goal is.”
-McGill forward Keanu Yamamoto.
Goalie Louis-Philip Guindon made 35 saves for the shutout.