Blackhawks goalie prospect Alexis Gravel made 31 saves and defenseman Jake Ryczek had an assist for the Halifax Mooseheads in a 4-2 loss to the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies in the Canadian Hockey League’s Memorial Cup final Sunday at Scotiabank Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
It’s the first Memorial Cup championship for Rouyn-Noranda, who also won the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League’s Presidents Cup Final in six games against Halifax.
Ryczek helped create the first goal for Halifax with 44 seconds remaining in the first period. The 2016 seventh-rounder fired a shot from the point that Samuel Asselin collected in front and sent past Huskies goaltender Samuel Harvey.
Raphael Lavoie, a projected first rounder in this year’s NHL draft, made it 2-0 only 5:26 into the second period on a breakaway.
But it was all Huskies after that with four unanswered goals by Félix Bibeau, Joel Teasdale, Peter Abbandonato and Vincent Marleau.
Halifax’s loss comes six years to the day of its first Memorial Cup championship when they defeated the Western Hockey League’s Portland Winterhawks 6-4 in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.
The 21-year-old Ryczek had one goal, one assist and 15 shots on goal in the tournament. Gravel, 19, went 2-2 with a 2.78 goals-against average and 0.918 save percentage in five outings.
Graham Knott, who was selected in the second round in the 2015 NHL draft, is the last Blackhawks prospect to win the Memorial Cup, helping the host Windsor Spitfires hoist the trophy in 2017.