The Ligue Nord-Americaine de Hockey kicked off its 18th season last night and it started off with a bang. Jonquiere toppled Trois Rivieres 6-5 and Riviere-Du-Loup knocked off Thetford Mines with a 7-4 win but the big stories for the start of the season were shown in the other two games being played on Friday night.
The fans of Sorel-Tracy were in for a huge treat as legendary enforcer Jon Mirasty signed on for the opening game against the newest LNAH addition, the Valleyfield Braves. With just 18 seconds into the first period, Mirasty dropped the mitts with former Cornwall River King, Mario Joly.
Not one of his better fights but Mirasty gave the much larger Joly a run for his money. However, even with all the fisticuffs Sorel was no match for the upstart Braves. Karl Fournier had an impressive 3 points in the first period en route to a 6-5 victory for Valleyfield.
Of course most people were looking to the Cornwall River Kings and their first regular season game. Amidst all the drama that unfolded the River Kings brass have managed to select a tough yet play making team. Yesterday’s lineup was as follows:
Bourret – Kavanagh – Chiasson
Corbeil – Filion – Faubert
Cloutier – Caron
Andress – Reid
Sigouin – Barker
Clearly we have seen much better improvement and play since the preseason match-ups now that Cornwall has solidified a core. The River Kings and St. Georges played tight and evenly into the shootout where Cornwall’s Alex Bourret came out on top with the game winner. Chris Clouthier dropped the gloves a few times to keep the crowd on its feet.
Looks like it’ll be a tight race between all 8 teams this year for the LNAH. Which is great for us hockey fans; nothing like the good ol’ hockey game in the dead of winter.