(Laval) Rafaël Harvey-Pinard understands that he is with the Rocket for the week, whatever happens in the very dynamic infirmary of the big club. He played like a guy who is ready to put in some effort.
Harvey-Pinard and Jesse Ylönen hit the target, while Cayden Primeau turned into a veritable wall and the Laval Rocket signed an important 4-0 victory against the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins on Monday at the Bell Square.
Primeau was the architect of this victory, with his 41 saves. But the contagious energy of Harvey-Pinard, in his first game in Laval since January 14, gave Laval residents a spark.
As soon as the players were introduced, the crowd roared when the name of the little winger was announced. Harvey-Pinard gave it back to the public by hitting the target in the third minute. His hard-hitting check against Jack St. Ivany also enlivened the crowd.
“I expect to stay here. According to what I was told, it will be here for the week, “agreed the Saguenean.
And obviously, going from the Canadian, who has been playing without a stake in the standings for weeks in front of spectators who are not always engaged, to the Rocket, who was fighting for his survival in front of 8,666 noisy supporters, boosted the player.
Then, in the third period, with the score still at 1-0, Ylönen scored with a powerful one-timer, a National League goal. The Finn wore the Rocket jersey for the first time since Feb. 4.
In Primeau’s eyes, there was clearly a “before” and an “after” in the performances of his two teammates, who spent the last few months in the NHL. “They’re playing really well and with a lot of confidence right now and we saw that tonight. Their shots were incredible. HP drew quickly, and I don’t think any goalkeeper stops Ylö’s shot. They were two big goals. »
It was clear at the trade deadline that Kent Hughes saw Harvey-Pinard and Ylönen helping the school club at the end of the season. That’s why both wingers were signed on paper to the Rocket on March 3 to qualify for the American League playoffs.
They obviously haven’t suffered from the “demotion blues”, if such a thing exists. They have never suffered from it in fact, faith of Jean-François Houle. “Ylö has never had a problem, he is smart enough to know where he is in his career. And HP, wherever he is, he plays the same. You don’t need to break it, play a mental game with it. »
Gabriel Bourque added the insurance goal with two minutes left in the game, while Danick Martel completed the scoring in an empty net. Martel fell heavily into the boards after his goal and appeared to be in pain in his right arm after the streak.
Martel “looked okay,” Houle said, though he had other concerns on his mind. Defenders Nicolas Beaudin and William Trudeau left the game before the end and will have to meet with the doctors before knowing more.
Still with less good news for Jean-François Houle’s men, they could not widen the gap in the standings since the Cleveland Monsters, the team chasing them for the last place giving access to the playoffs, have also triumphed on Monday. The Rocket maintain their one-point lead over No. 5 North Division Cleveland, but the Monsters have a game in hand.
And in both good and bad news for the team, we note the visit of Alex Belzile, seen around the locker room after the game. Bad news in that he still wore a protective boot and therefore did not miraculously recover like a modern-day Lazarus.
But good news because Houle was delighted with the presence of his captain, whom he lost along the way to the big club.
“He was hoping we would win so he could come downstairs!” We were very happy to see him. He’s our captain, he was there last year, the guys were super happy to see him with his boot. »
The Rocket will play its last two games Wednesday and Friday, two home games.