Wildcats top Sea Dogs in game one of back-to-back weekend

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Liam Leonard scored the go-ahead goal eight minutes into the third period, and picked up an assist, as the Wildcats edged the Saint John Sea Dogs, 4-3, Friday at Avenir Centre.

Mika Cyr, Jared McIsaac and Benoit-Olivier Groulx also scored for Moncton.

Cyr opened the scoring 84 seconds into the second period after he deflected an Alexander Khovanov shot from the right circle off the right leg of Sea Dogs’ goalie Zachary Bouthillier and then buried his own rebound.

Saint John tied the game nearly four minutes later, but McIsaac’s first Wildcats goal halfway through the period restored a Moncton lead at 2-1.

The Truro, Nova Scotia product carried the puck into the slot, faked a pass and rifled a shot along the ice inside the left post.

The visitors responded again two minutes later, creating a 2-2 score after forty minutes.

Groulx gave Moncton its third lead of the night 25 seconds into the third period, finishing off a pretty pass from Axel Andersson with a backhander over a sprawling Bouthillier.

The Sea Dogs even the score again more than seven minutes into the final period, cashing in on a 5-on-3 power play.

But Leonard scored the winner just over a minute later. It was his first goal since joining the Wildcats via trade.

The 19-year-old forward came out of the penalty box and snuck behind the Sea Dogs’ defence, took a pass and deked to his backhand to tuck the game-winning goal through Bouthillier’s legs.

Moncton netminder Olivier Rodrigue earned the win with 23 stops.

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