Titan hold off Pats third-period comeback to improve to 2-0
REGINA, Sask. – The Acadie-Bathurst Titan were back in action at the 2018 Mastercard Memorial Cup on Sunday as they took on the host Regina Pats. With both teams sitting at 1-0 going into this one, it was an important game with the winner securing at least a semi-final berth.
Just 13 seconds in the jumped in front 1-0 thanks to Cameron Hebig. However, the Titan responded with three goals in 1:21 giving them a 3-1 edge. Noah Dobson tied it 1-1 with his first of the tournament at 4:31, assisted by Samuel Asselin and Liam Murphy. Ethan Crossman potted his first Memorial Cup goal at 5:35 to put the Titan in front with Mitchell Balmas and Michal Ivan getting the helpers. Murphy rounded out the first period scoring with his second goal of the tournament as the Titan lead 3-1 after one period. Dobson and Jeffrey Viel notched the assists on the goal.
Asselin extended the Titan lead to 4-1 on a beautiful cross-ice pass from Murphy at 3:10 of the second period. Dobson added the secondary assist on the play. The Titan finally got one on the man advantage when Viel deflected a shot from Antoine Morand past Max Paddock at 8:49 giving the QMJHL champions a 5-1 advantage. German Rubtsov also picked up a helper on the goal. Jared Legien responded for the Pats at 10:45 but a misplay by Paddock at the side of the net allowed Viel to tap in his second of the game restoring a four-goal lead for the Titan. The shorthanded tally came unassisted at 13:11.
1:39 into the third period Crossman scored to further extend the Titan lead to 7-2. The goal, which would turn out to be the game-winner, was assisted by Ivan and Olivier Galipeau. Despite the Titan holding a five-goal cushion, the Pats made things interesting. Four-straight goals from Hebig, Nick Henry, Josh Mahura, and Matt Bradley brought the hosts to within a goal with under one minute remaining. Despite their efforts, Dobson’s empty-net goal at 19:59 squashed their hopes of a comeback.
1st Star – Noah Dobson
2nd Star – Sam Steel
3rd Star – Liam Murphy