The Rocket and the Devils played a low-shooting, low-whistle first period until the game’s intensity increased about halfway through the opening frame when John Ramage hit Lukas Vejdemo along the boards, injuring the Laval forward and keeping him out for the remainder of the game. Belize came to the defense of Vejdemo near the end of the period by dropping the gloves with Ramage, which resulted in the scoreless game becoming more physical and three penalties being distributed in the final two minutes of play.
Blake Pietila opened the scoring for the Devils early in the second period by wristing his 17th of the season by Connor LaCouvee off of a faceoff, and Ramage doubled his team’s lead 16 minutes into the period with a hard wrist shot that he sent over LaCouvee’s shoulder blocker-side. A penalty against the Rocket paved the way for Nick Lappin to make it 3-0 in favour of the visitors a little over a minute after Binghamton’s second goal, sending the Rocket into the third with a three-goal mountain to climb.
A beautiful pass from Evans set up Audette to bring the Rocket back to within two on an early two-man advantage just 3:42 into the third. Evans slid the puck across the slot to Audette from the goal post, fooling Binghamton netminder Cam Johnson and allowing Audette to net his 14th of the season. Ramage would score his second of the night a little less than halfway through the period however, and a breakaway goal by Brandon Gignac locked in the final score of 5-1 for the Devils.
“It was a difficult game tonight,” said Audette after the game. “We’ve been playing some good hockey recently but tonight we were taken by surprise off the bat, and as we said after the game, we really need to refocus and get ready for the weekend.”
LAV: Audette (Evans, Belzile)
BNG: Pietila (Schmelzer) | Ramage (Gignac, Popugaev) | Lappin (Quenneville, Pietila) | Ramage (Quenneville, Schmelzer) | Gignac
Goaltenders: LAV: LaCouvee (21/26) | BNG: Johnson (21/22)
Rocket Powerplay: 1/6 | Rocket Penalty Kill: 6/7
Three Stars: 1. John Ramage – BNG | 2. John Quenneville – BNG | 3. Brandon Gignac – BNG