The Olympiques bounce back against the Foreurs
GATINEAU– The Olympiques were back at home on Saturday afternoon to take on the Foreurs at the Slush Puppie Centre. Serge Beausoleil earned his first win behind the Olympiques’ bench, in an important playoff game that was almost entirely controlled by the home team.
A period dominated by Gatineau
The Olympiques dominated the first third of the game. Val-d’Or was punished just 18 seconds after the opening face-off, and Nathan Lévesque (18) took advantage to open the scoring by pushing a loose puck into the back of the net. Gatineau waited until the very end of the period to double their lead, when Jérémie Minville’s (27) shot from a tight angle hit the Foreurs defender and looped over Beaunoyer. The Olympiques were in control for virtually the entire period. The Foreurs threw only 6 shots on net, without getting any real dangerous opportunities.
Val-d’Or fails to find is rhythm
In the second period, Guillaume Chicoine’s team had few chances to score. His men missed their chances on the power play and struggled to find a rhythm due to their indiscipline, having been assessed 3 penalties in the period. On the other hand, the Olympiques continued to protect Zach Pelletier, who faced only 10 shots after 40 minutes.
Foreurs fight back, but Olympiques strikes back
In the third period, the Foreurs come alive. Gatineau’s Thomas Larouche’s shot bounced off Zach Pelletier’s shield and into the open net for Nathan Drapeau’s first goal. Moments later, however, a Frédéric Potvin mix-up behind his own net gave Gabriel Séguin (2) a golden opportunity to score his second of the season, and he didn’t miss. Potvin is visibly frustrated by his costly mistake at an inopportune moment, as he smashes his stick after the sequence. Nathan Brisson then removes any hope of getting back into the game, as he receives a 5-minute penalty and is ejected from the match after giving his opponent a double-check to the face.
Gatineau then went 5-3, and Justin Boisselle (11) added a 4th goal to close out the game. The final score was 4-1 in favor of the home team.
Serge Beausoleil’s press conference was full of jokes and good humour, following his first victory behind the Olympiques’ bench. The win was also his first at the Slush Puppie Centre.
“During the national anthem, I looked up and looked at the guys who were there. I said, ‘It gives me great pleasure to be associated with such a prestigious organization'”, says the head coach.
When congratulated on this achievement, Beausoleil adds “the first, but not the last”, with a smile on her face.
The Olympiques find themselves just one position above the Foreurs in the overall standings. The two points obtained by Gatineau are therefore very important in the race for the playoffs.
“We’re very motivated for what’s to come. We’re going to do our best to help this team. This game was important, but they’re all important between now and the end of the year, and the guys are aware of that,” Beausoleil points out.
The Olympiques’ next game is Tuesday (February 6) against the Acadie-Bathurst Titan at the Slush Puppie Centre.
Text by Philippe Villeneuve