X-Men defeat Aigles Bleus 4-2

Photo courtesy UdeM Communications
Photo courtesy UdeM Communications

MONCTON, NB – The Université de Moncton Aigles Bleus battled well, but ended up on the short end of the stick with a 4-2 loss to the St. Francis Xavier University X-Men in an AUS men's hockey action Saturday evening at the J.-Louis-Lévesque Arena.

There was no first period scoring in the defensive-oriented game, with only 2 shots on goal by the visitors and 7 by the local team. The X-Men took a 1-0 lead in the second stanza. Subway player of the game, Nathan Pancel, led the offense with two goals and four shots on goal. Jagger Dirk and Mark Tremaine, in an empty net, were the other marksmen.

Vincent Deslauriers (Mitchell Robillard, Carl Marois), at 9:30 put his team to within one goal, mid-way in the third. Pancel, at 17:24 and Tremaine, in the empty net at 19:17, gave the visitors a 4-1 lead near the end of the game. The Aigles did not back down as Samuel LeBlanc scored his team's second goal, a shorthanded marker, following a nice skate down the ice and a strong wrist shot with a few seconds left in the game.

Brandon Hope saw 26 pucks for the X-Men, the same for Alexi Thibaudeau, of the Aigles Bleus. The X-Men were 0 for 5 on the power play and Moncton, 0 for 3. 

Goaltender Alexi Thibaudeau played well for the blue and gold. ''It was a good game and a nice effort by all,'' Thibaudeau said. "We were capable to play 55 minutes out of 60 with this top team. We need to play better at the end. This was my first start this season and I was a bit nervous at the beginning. I did not get many shots in the first and that was alright. The defensemen did a decent job of blocking shots in our zone and limiting the errors. I needed to keep concentrated even if I only had a few shots. The puck hit my arm for their second goal and I only saw it at the last fraction of a second. I am happy, but I would have enjoyed a win.''

The seventh place Aigles Bleus (0-4-2) will host the sixth place Dalhousie Tigers (1-4-1), Wednesday evening at 7:00 pm. The AUS first place and undefeated X-Men (6-0-0) will next see action on Friday at home when they will again face the Aigles Bleus. Puck drop is 7:00 pm at the Charles V. Keating Centre.

Courtesy Moncton Athletics Communications