Credit: Dominic Charette/GatineauOlympiques
Tristan Luneau reinforced the Anaheim Ducks’ decision to select him in the second round of the 2022 NHL Draft by earning a first star performance and helping his Olympiques top the Val D’or Foreurs on Sunday.
Luneau, the first overall pick in the 2020 QMJHL Entry Draft, opened the scoring by floating a shot past William Blackburn, which was Luneau’s 13th of the season and adding an assist to mark a new career high in goals for the defenceman.
Alexis Gendron extended the lead on a sharp angle shot at 19:39 of the first period to extend the lead, giving Gatineau a 2-0 cushion heading into the intermission.
Gendron now has 12 points in 12 games since coming over from the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada, which they gave up a 2023 first round pick along with 2006 born Elliot Ogonowski and a third round pick in 2025.
Midway through the second period, Cam MacDonald added onto the lead, giving the Olympiques a three goal advantage by firing one past the blocker of Blackburn.
Since joining the Olympiques from the Saint John Sea Dogs, MacDonald has been excellent by registering 12 points in nine games.
The Foreurs were finally able to solve Emerik Despatie midway through the second frame when Tomas Cibulka scored on the powerplay with the puck redirecting off a defender and finding its way past Depatie and giving the Foreurs new life temporarily.
Cibulka, who is in his second season with the Foreurs, was the teams’ first round pick in the CHL Import Draft in 2021.
MacDonald put the game out of reach when he scored his second of the game on the powerplay with Gendron feeding him on a terrific passing play before he buried the puck past Blackburn, giving the Olympiques a 4-1 lead.
Cole Cormier added a goal early in the third to put Gatineau up 5-1, capping off what was an offensive explosion for Gatineau. One they hope to carry into their rematch versus Val D’or this Friday.
Both deadline acquisitions Riley Kidney and Issac Beliveau notched two assists. Despatie picked up his tenth win of the season with 30 saves, while Blackburn was tagged with the loss despite a sensational 39 save performance.
The Olympiques outshot the Foreurs 44-31. Both teams were one-for-two on the powerplay.
After the four-game road trip that had Gatineau taking three of four games, the Olympiques will have a four game homestand before taking on the Ottawa 67s in the OHL for the Battle of the Ottawa River on February 9th.