It hasn’t taken long for rookie Jordan Dumais to make a great impression in Moose Country and the 18th overall pick in June’s QMJHL Draft had another impressive outing on Sunday by scoring twice in a 6-3 loss to the Sea Dogs.
Dumais hasn’t looked out of place while playing on a line with acquired stars Zachary L’Heureux and Elliot Desnoyers who came over from the Moncton Wildcats in an offseason trade. The 16-year-old picked up his second and third goals of the preseason just 1:50 apart in the second period of Sunday loss, the first defeat in four games for the Mooseheads.
Saint John controlled the opening period and jumped out to a 3-0 lead on 15 shots against the Herd and starting goalie Cole McLaren. The home team got tallies from Josh Lawrence, Charlie DesRoches and Brady Burns in a span of 3:16 starting with the Lawrence goal at the 11:07 mark. Halifax came out a different looking club in the middle period and proved they wouldn’t go down without a fight with the back-to-back goals by Dumais to cut the deficit to 3-2. The Sea Dogs later got the eventual game-winner from DesRoches on the power play with 3:10 to go in the period as the defenceman had a monstrous performance in the game with two goals and two assists. The big line helped the Herd fight back again before the end of the second stanza when Zachary L’Heureux made some excellent moves in an individual effort on the man advantage to cut the Saint John lead to 4-3. Elliot Desnoyers assisted on all three Mooseheads goals.
4-3 was as close as the Moose could get though, despite some strong pressure in the final 20 minutes. Brady Burns netted his second of the game to give the Dogs a little insurance and Liam Leonard scored on an empty net to make the final score 6-3 in the second straight entertaining affair between the two clubs and setting the stage for an exciting season series in which the rivals will cross paths 12 times.
L’Heureux fell an assist shy of the Gordie Howe hat-trick after the 17-year-old scored his third goal of the preseason and dropped the gloves with Riley Bezeau in a spirited first period tilt that came when his Mooseheads were trailing 3-0. Other Halifax players picking up assists in the game were Cam Whynot, Lucas Robinson and Samuel Dube. The Herd only dressed 17 players with 10 forwards and seven defencemen.
Goalie Cole McLaren stopped 19 of 22 shots in just over 29 minutes of play before giving way to rookie Brady James who made 13 saves on 15 shots. Noah Patenaude got the start for Saint John and stopped 13 of 14 while winner Daniel Moody was much busier with 20 saves on 22 shots.
20-year-old Liam Peyton played his first game in a Halifax uniform and was the left wing on a line centered by rookie Markus Vidicek. Peyton had four shots on goal and used his big body to make a couple of hits as well. The overage forward was acquired from Charlottetown on draft day in exchange for a fourth round pick in 2021 and ninth round pick in 2020. He had 21 points in 60 games last season with the Islanders.
The Mooseheads have just one preseason game remaining with a final tune-up on Saturday, September 26th at 4pm against Charlottetown at the RBC Centre in Dartmouth. That game will be streamed live on the Mooseheads’ official YouTube Channel.
The QMJHL regular season begins on Friday, October 2nd for the Moose when they visit Cape Breton. Halifax will host the Eagles the following night on Saturday, October 3rd at 7pm in the Home Opener at Scotiabank Centre. Ticket bundles go on sale this Tuesday for returning Season Ticket Members at 10am. Click here for details.