by Nolan Reid
It was a picture perfect home opener for the P.E.I. Rocket, opening the season in winning fashion with a 6-2 win over arch-rival, Moncton Wildcats, Friday night at the Charlottetown Civic Centre.
Rocket captain and Island native, Josh Currie, led the way for the Rocket with three goals and an assist.
It was a huge win especially being the team’s home opener against their arch-rvials, said Currie.
“We hate those guys over there and we showed it. It’s good to show the fans what we’re all about this year.”
It’s good to get the first win of the season and get the ball rolling, said Currie.
“All 20 guys bought in…it was a great team effort tonight.”
Rocket opened the scoring late in the first period with a shorthanded goal from defenceman Alex Micallef. Nathan Yetman and Erik Robichaud drew the assists. The goal came with a10th of a second left on the clock at 19:59.
On the same penalty kill in the second period, Currie increased the Rocket lead with a shorthanded goal just 40 seconds in. Currie then extended the Rocket lead with a powerplay goal at 7:17. Moncton found their way on the board with a powerplay goal from Island native Ross Johnston at 12:33.
In the third period, Ben Duffy put the Rocket back up by three goals at 7:20 before Moncton’s Alex Saulnier made it 4-2 at 12:23. Victor Provencher added a powerplay marker at 15:39 to give the Rocket the 5-2 lead before Currie completed the hat-trick at 17:52.
Maxime Lagace made 31 saves in goal for the Rocket to pick up the win.
Alex Dubeau suffered the loss in goal for Moncton stopping 19 shots.
In the first intermission, it was announced that the P.E.I. Rocket will be re-branded as the P.E.I. Islanders. The logo and jersey are a work in progress.
The Rocket continue their home opening weekend Sunday afternoon against Nathan MacKinnon and the Halifax Mooseheads. Gametime is 3 p.m.