CORNWALL ONTARIO – After a tame start to the pre-season, the River Kings had a wild weekend with a feisty home-and-home against Valleyfield. And it’s safe to say these two teams don’t like each other.
The River Kings skated to a 7-6 shootout victory in front of 1,123 fans on Saturday night at the Civic Complex. Nicolas Corbeil and Alex Bourret scored for the River Kings in the shootout, while Loic Lacasse stopped both shooters he faced.
There were a total of 21 fights in the weekend set; 14 on Friday night in Valleyfield and seven more in Cornwall on Saturday.
SATURDAY NIGHT’S ALRIGHT
The River Kings trailed 6-4 in the contest but Bobby Mazerolle and Chris Ayotte scored 35 seconds apart on setups by Corbeil to send the game to overtime.
It was former River Kings defenceman Mario Joly opened the scoring at 3:13 of the first with a beautiful deke on Lacasse. Then, Fabien Laniel batted the puck out of mid-air for a powerplay marker at 5:18 to give the Braves a 2-0 lead.
The River Kings battled back however as Pierre-Luc Faubert converted on a nifty cross-crease pass from Bourret at 8:27 of the first. Then on a Cornwall powerplay, Jonathan Jasper’s blast from the point was tipped in by Faubert to tie the game up at 10:49.
Karl Fournier was left all alone in front and beat Lacasse at 13:57. But, Cornwall got even with another powerplay goal when Corbeil tipped a perfect pass from J.P. Caron. Anthony Mezzagno picked up a loose puck in front and buried it with 1:49 to play on the man advantage however, as the Braves took a 4-3 lead to the dressing room after 20 minutes.
Laniel sprung loose on a breakaway 43 seconds into the second and beat Lacasse up high to give Valleyfield a 5-3 lead. Caron was then the recipient of a beautiful setup by Bourret as the Kings battled back to within a goal at 4:17. Bourret had four assists on the evening.
With the man advantage, Valleyfield’s Joshua Desmarais tipped a point shot passed a screened Lacasse at 10:00 of the third to restore the two-goal lead.
On Friday night in Valleyfield, the Braves downed the Kings 5-2 in a wild contest that saw eight fights alone in the first period. Alexandre Moisan, Carl Tatonetti, Anthony Pittarelli, Collin Rice and Michael Stacy each dropped the mitts twice for the River Kings.
Jonathan Nantel had two goals for the Braves, who also got markers from Karl Fournier, Julien Corriveau and Joshua Desmarais. Jean-Phillippe Caron had a goal and an assist for the River Kings. Jonathan Jasper also scored for Cornwall.
The River Kings kick off their regular season next Friday night at Saint-Georges. Cornwall begins its second LNAH season with three straight on the road, before its home opener on Saturday, Oct. 26. That night, the defending LNAH champions Jonquiere Marquis come to town for a 7:30 p.m. start.