The last day of the first leg of the Division 1 championship was spread over the week, with games played from Tuesday to Thursday.
The poster was all found with the confrontation Tuesday between the leader Dunkirk and his dolphin Epinal, in an ice rink in Raffoux once again sold out (1,400 spectators). In case of victory in regulation time, the Vosges could quite simply delight the evening opponent the first place in the standings. But for that, it was necessary to respond present from the start, and the delay in the ignition of the Wildcats will prove fatal. Ethan Roswell opened the scoring after less than a minute for the Corsairs. Two full minutes later, Ben Duperreault doubled the lead. Rayan Belharfi condemned the fate of Antoine Bonvalot in the game when the table did not yet show the six minutes disputed, but this same Belharfi baptized Martin Altrichter a few moments later. With four goals behind, the players of Jan Plch had no choice but to find solutions, but they will only be able to stop the bleeding. Framed by a serious defense from start to finish, Léo Bertein recorded his second shutout of the season on 35 attempts (4-0). In such a tight championship, it was the victory that was needed for the Northerners, who lead the Wildcats to five points (read the full report of the meeting, by Mathieu Hernaz).
After two consecutive victories, Strasbourg could continue his series in case of success at home against Caen, stimulus training since last weekend. However, it was the Drakkars who took the lead in the middle third on a goal from Marc Beckstead, but the Strasbourg managed to equalize through a player who had passed through the Caen house, Timothée Franck. Nothing will be scored then, until the shots on goal which succeed rather well for Ronan Quémener. He will again have the opportunity to prove it by failing only once, against two for his counterpart (1-2 tabs). It’s a setback for the Black Star who fails to reach the play-off zone (even if it was still so far in the season) while Caen continues to finish the first leg with a win ratio finally positive, which was not won at the beginning of the month.
The Drakkars are tied with Marseilleswhich furthermore goes through Mont Blanc following the success of the Yétis in Provence. Kurt Sonne and Mikulas Bicha quickly put the mountaineers in a preferential position. If defender Lukas Blaha unlocked the Marseille counter, Jérémy Arès was responsible for giving his team a two-goal lead. An even greater advantage thanks to Lassi Peltola on the return from the locker room, and if Maxime Leroux maintained the hope of a double, Richard Aimonetto finished the job in an empty cage to lead the Haut-Savoyards to fourth place in the standings (3-5 ).
They are tied on points with the Corsairs of Nantes, who are one game ahead. The team led by Martin Lacroix received Neuilly-sur-Marne this Tuesday and managed his meeting perfectly to pass it serenely, winning each of the periods. Matthew Brenton took less than a minute to open the scoring, then was imitated by Mathieu André. Joé Dubé was in charge of the third goal, before the only Nocéenne achievement scored by Benoit Valier. The Nantes victory was completed by Alex Ambrosio, Romain Carpentier then Brenton for the double (6-1).
Wednesday, the Remparts of Towers had the ambition to take second place from the Spinaliens, but that would require a victory for the red lantern, Morzine Avoriaz. After a goalless first third, the Tourangeaux took the lead halfway through the match on a goal from Fabien Métais. But the locals reacted immediately with the equalizer from Eliott Gouttry, then the advantage taken by Blake Luscombe, just before returning to the locker room. Stéphane Gros’s men held this result for a long time, but finally had to concede the equalizer in the last three minutes of play, through Matthew Newbury. A hard blow usually never coming alone, they finally lost in extra time with Guillaume McSween as the decisive scorer (2-3 ap). A new symbolic part of the Penguin season, so close but who often forced to bow at the end. Good operation on the other hand for Tours which takes two points, that is to say as much ahead of Épinal, by returning to three lengths from Dunkirk (with however one match more than these two teams).
Morzine sees its delay on Chambery stagnate at five points, to the credit of the same day’s results for the Elephants. They welcomed Cholet and conceded the opener by Valérian Mathieu. The Alsatian doubled the lead in the second half, but the locals came back first through Canadian defender Brayden Sampson and then by young Matias Bachelet. In this marathon match, Chambéry took the advantage for the first time in the third period thanks to Alex Labbé, but less than a minute later Gatis Sprukts reset the counters to zero. Labbé offered himself a double but the hat-trick finally from Mathieu led all these beautiful people in overtime. It will last a little over a minute, the time for Baptiste Couturier to offer victory to the Dogs (4-5 ap). The Choletais are riding a virtuous wave with four victories in their last five meetings.
At the end of the day, the Albatross of Brest had a good shot to play in the event of victory in the Hérault on the ice of Montpellier. However, it was the Vipers who took the lead through Vince Tartari, but the Bretons reversed the trend at the end of T1 with goals from Ville Saukko and Valentin Motreff. Barely back on the ice, the locals equalized thanks to Petr Stepanek, and the game retained its tension in the final period: Graham Avenel restored the advantage to his team, but Montpellier equalized again within a minute, by the untenable Kyle Heffernan. Unfortunately for her training, she will leave empty-handed since Mathieu Tremblay will score the winning goal (3-4). With four consecutive victories, Brest breathes and finds the top 8, while it is still between one and three games behind the other teams. After a good start, the Montpellier residents are now marking time and falling to thirteenth place, with four points but also a game ahead of Morzine-Avoriaz.
Illustration by Charlotte Rossignol
Division 1 ice hockey