Eperviers enforcer Guillaume Coude opened the scoring at 9:53 of the first when he tapped in a rebound past a helpless Pete Karvouniaris. Etienne Brodeur scored with 59 seconds to play in the second period when he beat Karvouniaris on a perfect saucer pass from Gregory Dupre.
Speedy winger Michael Stinziani, with a great second effort, gave the River Kings some life 27 seconds into the third period. Stinziani couldn’t beat Sorel goaltender Adam Russo on a semi-breakaway but, from behind the net, banked a shot off Russo’s pad and in to cut Sorel’s lead in half.
The Eperviers restored their two-goal lead on a Evgueni Nurislamov marker at 9:05 of the third. The Russian defenceman blasted a shot past Karvouniaris just as a Sorel powerplay expired.
Maxime Charron, with a pretty deke on a breakaway, scored an insurance marker for Eperviers with 5:46 to play before Julien Corriveau scored a powerplay goal from the slot with 2:42 to play.
Sebastien Rioux was then awarded a goal (only in the LNAH) with 55 seconds to play.
Pierrick Martel, who had two assists for the Eperviers (first), Stinziani (second) and Brodeur were the announced stars. Cornwall outshot Sorel 26-25.
FISTICUFFS: River Kings fan-favourite Curtis Tidball challenged tough guy Jon Mirasty from the Eperviers to a late second period scrap. In the first, Brodeur took exception to a huge Brennan Barker hit as two had a spirited bout.
Game 1: Sorel 6, Cornwall 3
Game 2: Sorel 5, Cornwall 2
Game 3: Friday, March 20 at Sorel, 8 p.m.
Game 4: Saturday, March 21 at Cornwall, 7:30 p.m.
Game 5: x-Friday, March 27 at Sorel, 8 p.m.
Game 6: x-Saturday, March 28 at Cornwall, 7:30 p.m.
Game 7: x-Sunday, March 29 at Sorel, 4 p.m.
Bring a Friend!