SUDBURY - The Abitibi Eskimos’ modest two-game winning streak came to an abrupt end Wednesday night at the McClelland Arena.
The Sudbury Nickel Barons handed the visitors from Iroquois Falls a 7-2 setback.
The second period proved to be the Eskimos’ downfall Wednesday night.
After the two teams skated through a scoreless first period, it took Sudbury just 23 seconds to get on th frame in the middle period.
Defenceman Michael Rouleau beat Eskimos goaltender Marc Audet and the flood gates opened up.
“We had such a good first period and, you know what, after the the first period I felt really confident,” said Eskimos coach and general manager Paul Gagne.
“And then, next thing you know, they got a wrist shot from the top of the circle and it hits his (Audet) and goes in and it sort of deflated us right after that.
“I don’t know why it happened, but it deflated us.”
Sebastien Leroux made it 2-0 for Sudbury less than a minute later and then Marco Lizotte found the back of the net just over a minute after the Leroux goal to up the lead to 3-0.
Giovanni Foschia made it 4-0 for the home side just over five minutes into the period.
“We spotted them, basically, four goals and it’s not easy to get out of that,” Gagne said.
“But, you know what, we did work hard and we persevered. We tried to continue on, but when a game is like that, four goals out of reach, it’s tough.”
Captain Richard Therrien finally stopped the bleeding when he scored a power-play goal, but Sudbury was far from finished.
Darcy Haines and Brett Dusick scored goals just over a minute apart midway through the period.
Dustin Jesseau scored the Eskimos second power-play goal of the frame, as the Eskimos ended the second period down 6-2.
Neither team had been able to find the back of the net during the first period of play, with Audet stopping 15 Sudbury shots and the Nickel Barons’ Alexander Laino making 11 saves.
Audet was lifted in favour of Etienne Roy at the start of the third period.
“He made a couple of nice saves and held his own,” Gagne said.
“They scored the one goal goal in the third period.”
Joshua Moore greeted Roy with a goal at the 10 minute mark of the final frame, however.
Roy stopped 14 of the 15 shots fired his way in the third period by the Nickel Barons.
Audet blocked 22 of the 28 shots he faced during the first two periods of play.
Laino earned the victory for Sudbury, stopping 32 of the 34 shots he faced.
“You know what, it was one of those nights,” Gagne said.
“We just couldn’t get things going.
“I thought we did have it going in the first period, but unfortunately we couldn’t get it going.
“When you spot goals like that, it’s catch up hockey and you can’t spot them goals like that.
“It’s unfortunate, but we had our chances in the first period. We really did. We had breakaways and we couldn’t even get a shot on net.
“I thought our power play was really clicking, in the first period, we were making things happen.
“And then, next thing you know, it’s 1-0 for them and then they burst into the second with all those goals.”
ESKIMOS NOTES: Forward Peter Poulin-Roy has been named to the Canada East training camp roster for the 2012 World Junior ‘A’ Challenge. The selection camp will be held Oct. 28-31 at the MasterCard Centre in Toronto. The 60 players will be divided into three teams — Black, Gold and Green — and will play three intrasquad games, in addition to daily practices. Poulin-Roy, a Val-d’Or, Que., native, had appeared in six games with the Eskimos prior to Wednesday night’s game in Sudbury, registering four goals and five assists.The 2012 World Junior ‘A’ Challenge will take place in Yarmouth, N.S., from Nov. 5-11 … Jesseau, who had a goal and three assists in Saturday’s 9-8 win over the Blind River Beavers, has been named one of the NOJHL’s three stars of the week. Jesseau now has two goals and five assists in three games with the Eskimos … The Eskimos will return to the ice at the Jus Jordan Arena on Saturday night to face the second-place North Bay Trappers. Game time is 7:30 p.m. … The Eskimos may have a new player in the lineup on Saturday night. The team has acquired forward Adriano Mungioli from the Humboldt Broncos, of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League. The 5-9, 176 lb., Dallas native had two minutes in penalties in four games with the Broncos this season. Mungioli, 19, spent last season with the LA Kings U18, of the MWEHL, and registered 25 points (13 goals) in 38 regular season games. “I am hoping he’s going to be in the lineup on Saturday, against North Bay,” Gagne said. “He’s a right-handed shot, a top-six forward, who can make things happen and score goals, a hard worker.” … Forward Francis Deforges, who had been in camp with the Eskimos, is no longer with the team.