Dawson Theede scored the winner with 3.2 seconds to play in the third period Wednesday as the Saint Mary’s Huskies took Game 1 of their best-of-three Atlantic University Sport men’s hockey quarter-final with the UPEI Panthers with a 5-4 victory.
The goal came 45 seconds after Darian Pilon tied the game on a 6-on-4 power play with the Panthers’ net empty.
Saint Mary’s can eliminate UPEI and advance to the semifinal with a win Friday. Game 2 is set for 7 p.m. at MacLauchlan Arena. Game 3, if necessary, would be played Sunday at 7 p.m. in Halifax.
Wednesday, the Huskies led 1-0 after the first period, but the Panthers took a 3-2 lead to the third.
Former Charlottetown Islanders forward Keith Getson had a goal and two assists while Sam King, another former Isle, tied the game 2:35 into the third. Joel Bishop scored the go-ahead goal 9:17 into the final frame.
Connor McGlynn also scored in the victory. Logan DeNoble and Anthony Repaci each had two assists in the win while Jacob Friend, Bronson Beaton and Nick Welsh each added singles.
Kyle Maksimovich had two goals and an assist for UPEI while Pilon’s twin brother, Drake, also scored. Darian Pilon had three assists while Filip Rydstrom had two and Kameron Kielly one. Rydstrom and Kielly both played their junior hockey in Charlottetown.
Eric Brassard, another former Islander, made 29 saves for the victory while Simon Hofley stopped 23 shots in the loss.
Saint Mary’s was 1-for-4 on the power play while UPEI was 3-for-6.
In the other quarter-final, host Moncton defeated St. FX 3-2 to take Game 1.
Vincent Deslauriers scored all three goals in the win, including the winner shorthanded with five seconds remaining in the second period. Maxime St-Cyr had three assists while Danick Crete chipped in one.
Regan Spears on the power play and Cole MacDonald with a second left in the third replied for St. FX. Jeremiah Addison had two assists while Adam Holwell chipped in one.
Etienne Montpetit made 29 saves for the victory while Blade Mann-Dixon, who played half a season with the Islanders, stopped 40 shots in the loss.