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Hillier, Lefebvre Have Multi-point Games in Loss

by Romano Di Franco

ROCKLAND, ON – The Nepean Raiders were in action Friday night to take on the Rockland Nationals. Both teams come into the game off losses. The Nationals are 2-3 in their last five games having scored 11 goals and allowing 16 while the Raiders are 1-4 in their last 5. They have found the back of the net 19 times and given up 37. Nepean won in their only previous meeting with Rockland back on November 15 with a 4-3 victory in OT.

Newly signed Nathan Loisel (1-0, 3.18 GAA) who previously played for the Navan Grads got the start in goal for Nepean while Jack McGovern (4-11-1, 3.41 GAA) was between the pipes for Rockland.

It was the Nats who got on the scoreboard first after Giovanni Morneau beat Loisel glove side to put Rockland up 1-0. The goal came on the PowerPlay with Ryan Liverman in the box for High Sticking. Nepean answered right back as Costa Touliopoulos deflected a Samuel Beaulne shot from the point past McGovern. Zachary Lefebvre put the Raiders ahead 2-1 minutes later with a PowerPlay goal of their own. Lefebvre knocked home an Anthony Rivard pass from behind the net. Jack Hillier got the other helper.

After 20 minutes the Raiders outshot the Nats 12-6 and held a 2-1 lead.

Rockland dominated the second period as Isaac Landry evened the score at 2-2 with his first of the season just 1:44 into the second period beating Loisel to the short-side over the blocker. William Pilon then put the Nationals in front once again with his first of the season banging home a rebound from the edge of the paint. The Raiders had some great scoring chances as Jeff Taylor was denied again by McGovern after being robbed in the first as well.

The second period ended with Rockland out in front 3-2 and after outshooting Nepean 16-4 in the second, they also led in shots at 22-16.

William Pilon got his second of the game beating Loisel over the blocker to give Rockland a 4-2 lead. Justin Dauphinais then made it 5-2 pouncing on a rebound off the post that he buried just before a sliding Loisel could get to the left side before the leading point-getter for the Nationals.

The Raiders made a game of it when Jack Hillier deflected home a Coleman Bennett shot past McGovern to make it 5-3. Tyler Melvin almost made it a one-goal game firing a shot off the crossbar just moments later.

The Raiders went on the PowerPlay with a minute and a half left in the game. They pulled Loisel for the extra attacker but it was Rockland that capitalized with an empty-net short-handed goal to ice the game.

Nationals’ forwards William Pilon (2G) was the game’s first star with Giovanni Morneau (1G | 2A) getting the second star nod. Zachary Lefebvre (1G | 1A) earned third star honours.

Costa Touliopoulos (1G) was named the hardest working Raider.

Fast facts… Jack Hillier is tied for second place in rookie scoring with 5 goals and 5 assists for 10 points. The Raiders are 4-3 when outshooting their opponents. Nepean is averaging 30 shots per game.

The Raiders next game is Sunday, December 5 as they take on the Renfrew Wolves at the Nepean Sportsplex Steve Yzerman Arena for a 2:30pm puck drop.