LEWISTON – Triston Manson knows the Lewiston Maineiacs didn’t bring him in to be a sniper.

But, since none of the Moncton Wildcats seemed willing to throw down their gloves with the Maineiacs’ new enforcer, maybe he figured scoring a goal would be the best way to make a good first impression.

Manson scored Lewiston’s first of three goals Friday night, and fellow 20-year-old newcomer Simon Courcelles had an assist and was a pest to Moncton defenders all night in a pair of solid debuts.

“I really don’t know their personalities yet to make a full judgment,” said Maineiacs assistant coach Ed Harding, “but it was a good first showing.”

Manson joined the team in Bathurst on Monday, but hadn’t played yet despite traveling with the team on the road trip to Bathurst and Moncton.

“I wasn’t in game shape at all,” said Manson. “I’d been on the ice, but not high tempo. It’s good to get the first game under the belt, though.”

Manson endeared himself to the home crowd quickly. Parked in front of Moncton goaltender Jhase Sniderman, Manson took a rebound off of a Kevin Marshall shot from the point and tapped it into the net for his first goal as a member of the Maineiacs.

“I played a lot on the power play with the first coach (in Shawinigan) last year,” said Manson. “I just stand in front, do what I have to do, put it in if I have to.”

Courcelles, meanwhile, did what he has done for years in this league. Aside from his assist on David Perron’s first of two goals (a perfect saucer feed from the left side of the slot to the right on a 2-on-2), Courcelles made it a habit to pester the Moncton defense.

“I thought I read that pretty well,” said Courcelles. “I know (Moncton defenseman Nathan) Welton well. He was a defenseman against us last year. He did the same play earlier, he slid back. I had enough speed to go around him, and Perron finished the play real well.”

Courcelles was also his own biggest critic, though.

“My timing’s a little off, but that’s expected right now, and we can work on that,” said Courcelles. “We have a good offense. We have to work on the timing a little bit, but it’s looking good.”

Harding noticed the timing miscues, too, but didn’t sound worried about Courcelles’ ability to adapt.

“The timing was a little bit off, but he’s a good hockey player,” said Harding. “He seems to be a very astute hockey player as well.”

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