Mooseheads clinch playoff berth

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The Halifax Mooseheads have officially clinched a postseason berth in the QMJHL President Cup Playoffs. Despite falling 3-2 to the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles in overtime on Friday night, the team nailed down a spot thanks to Sherbrooke’s loss in Shawinigan.

Playoff tickets for the general public for games 3 and 4 of the opening round will go on sale Tuesday morning at 11am.

The deadline for Season Ticket and 15 Game Pack holders to secure their seats with full or per round playoff packages is Saturday until the end of the final regular season home game versus Saint John. Click here to renew.

The Mooseheads and Eagles played a physical and entertaining game in front of a large crowd of 7,785 at Scotiabank Centre that saw 20-year-old Massimo Carozza pick up the game winning goal just 37 seconds into overtime beating first star Alex Gravel who played outstanding yet again with 35 saves.

Gravel same up with some huge saves throughout the contest that kept the score close although he admittedly would like to have the tying goal back after whiffing on a chance to catch a clear shot from Drake Batherson midway through the third period.

The Mooseheads held a 2-0 lead until late in the middle stanza on a pair of power play goals by Arnaud Durandeau and Frederic Aube but Cape Breton was able to mount a comeback. Defenceman Leon Gawanke got the visitors on the board with 1:39 to go in the second period and Batherson pulled the Screaming Eagles even at 9:37 of the third.

The game was littered with emotion and chippy play and seemed to intensify after Peyton Hoyt caught Jake Coughler with a hit just inside the blueline, sparking a fight between Hoyt and Joel Bishop.

Final shots on goal were 38-26 for Cape Breton with Carozza grabbing second star honours for his game-winner while Max Fortier was named the third star after picking up an assist. Fortier regained the Mooseheads scoring lead with 86 points which is one more than teammate Nico Hischier. Jocktan Chainey, Jared McIsaac and Connor Moynihan also had assists for the Herd.

Halifax played without forward Otto Somppi who is out indefinitely with a separated shoulder. Goaltender Blade Mann-Dixon remained out with a lower body injury but is nearing a return. He is listed as day-to-day. Barrett Dachyshyn is out for the season with an upper-body injury.

The Mooseheads will host the Saint John Sea Dogs Saturday at 4pm on Fan Appreciation Day. The game is officially sold-out as the Herd seek to find out who their opening round opponent will be.

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