Ruiz, Hat Tricks snap Wolves’ streak

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WATERTOWN — The Watertown Wolves continued their winning ways Saturday, with another newcomer making an impact for the second straight night.

Maxime Guyon scored three goals and captain Justin MacDonald contributed a pair of goals as the Wolves cruised to a 7-3 win over the Carolina Thunderbirds in a Federal Prospects Hockey League game before 753 fans at Watertown Municipal Arena.

“It’s good to be here,” said Guyon, who was signed by the Wolves to a tryout agreement this week. “I haven’t played in a while, so it’s nice to be able to help out right away.”

Rookie goalie Breandan Colgan made 45 saves for league-leading Watertown (18-3), which extended its winning streak to nine games.

The Wolves and Thunderbirds conclude their three-game set at 6:30 tonight in Watertown.

A night after league veteran Ahmed Mahfouz scored a goal in his debut with the Wolves, it was Guyon’s time to shine. He scored one of the team’s four goals in the first period to help spark the team.

“Tonight was a good game,” Guyon, a 27-year-old native of Quebec, said. “I made a couple of turnovers that I didn’t like, but everything is going to get better and better.”

Guyon hadn’t played in the league since 2017-18 with the Cornwall Nationals, where he played with Watertown coach Brent Clarke and Mahfouz.

“We’re glad to have him here,” Clarke said of Guyon. “He’s a good player and he’s already helping us out on the power play.”

The Wolves scored four times in the first period, starting with two goals within a span of one minute and one second on a tally each from MacDonald and Larry Yellowknee. The two goals also came on the first two shots on goal of the game for Watertown a night after beat Carolina, 4-2, on home ice.

“Yesterday, I didn’t think we came out that strong and they hung in there for a bit,” MacDonald said of Carolina. “Generally, you want to put teams away real early and today our thing was coming out strong and that’s what we did.”

MacDonald finished off a feed from Alexander Jmaeff 4:07 into the game and Yellowknee scored on a snapshot from the right faceoff circle for a 2-0 lead as Watertown scored on its first two shots on goal.

After former Wolves player Cameron Dimmitt drew Carolina within 2-1 with his goal 7:53 into the period, MacDonald quickly responded, scoring from the top of the crease, converting a pass from Lane King.

Watertown led 4-1 on Guyon’s power-play goal with 9.3 seconds left in the period.

“The new guys, we’ve got to break them in,” MacDonald said. “They know systems, but at the same time every team has different systems, so it’s going to take a little time, but they’re fitting in perfectly.”

While the Wolves converted on its only power play of the period, they also killed off all three Carolina penalties in the opening 20 minutes.

After Carolina drew within 4-2 on Jacob Schnapp’s goal 49 seconds into the second period, Jmaeff scored off a pass from MacDonald to regain a three-goal lead 7:42 into the period. Watertown led 6-2 on Guyon’s goal with 2:41 left in the period, with Yellowknee assisting.

Guyon followed with his second power-play goal of the night, scoring 1:28 into the third, with Jmaeff assisting.

“We continue to play well as a team right now and it’s good having these new guys pitch in,” Clarke said.

Colgan, now 9-1 this season, has won his past eight starts.

“This is a really, really good team,” Guyon said of the Wolves. “I think we have a really deep team here.”

The Wolves have now won all five games this season against Carolina (11-10-2). The Wolves also improved to 10-1 at home and haven’t lost a game overall in a month — a 4-1 loss at Danbury on Dec. 8.

“We’re only going to get better and better, right?” said MacDonald, who leads the Wolves in goals with 22 in 18 games. “The only way we’re going to lose is if we do this to ourselves, no team is going to beat us. So as long as we don’t do that, we’ll be in good shape.”

NOTES: Jmaeff totaled four points on the night, including three assists and his 19th goal of the season. ... Watertown also improved to 10-1 at home this season and is also 8-2 on the road. ... Mahfouz, who signed with the Wolves this week, recorded two assists after tallying a goal and an assist in his first game with the team Friday night.

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