LEWISTON – Even the Lewiston Maineiacs’ practices are getting tough.

This week, some of the Maineiacs were not performing up to assistant coach Ed Harding’s standards.

“You have to start being more intense, right here,” Harding barked. “You can’t skate through the rest of the season. Teams like Bathurst are gunning for you in every game, on every shift. You have to work harder and smarter than them.”

The team responded. The next set of drills were faster, the shots crisper and the passes more accurate.

Lewiston will play its next five games on the road, starting with a pair tonight and Saturday against the Acadie-Bathurst Titan.

“They are a dangerous team, especially on the power play,” Maineiacs head coach Clem Jodoin said. “It’s tough to play in the building, and they still have two pretty good scorers.”

Thomas Beauregard and Mathieu Perreault have combined for 216 points and the pair sits 2-3 in points in the QMJHL.

“They’re dominant, but in our mind, we can beat them,” Jodoin said. “What they get, we give to them, so we have to be smart, stay out of the box and keep them off the ice.”

The Maineiacs have surged on offense lately, scoring 17 goals in three games since a 4-1 loss to Cape Breton.

“The new lines are starting to work better together,” Jodoin said. “This is what we need, balanced scoring from all of our lines.”

In the three-game stretch, captain Marc-Andre Cliche has rediscovered his scoring touch with four goals and six points, and rookie David Perron continued to lead the team in scoring, adding three goals and six points.

In net, Peter Delmas will skip the upcoming Canada Games, for which he was selected to represent Nova Scotia, to play for the Maineiacs in place of still-injured Jonathan Bernier.

Lewiston is 5-1 – including 2-0 in overtime or shootout – against the Titan, who are fighting to hang onto sixth place in the Eastern Division.

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