Recently acquired L/A Nordiques goaltender Andrew Ghimpeteanu makes a timely save during second-period action against the Northeast Generals at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee on Saturday. (Ron Morin photos)

 

LEWISTON — Andrew Ghimpeteanu made a good first impression.

The L/A Nordiques new goaltender made 30 saves in a 5-2 victory over the Northeast Generals in front of 947 fans at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee on Saturday.

The 19-year-old from Snellville, Georgia, was acquired in a trade with the Maine Wild  following the Nordiques win over the Wild on Wednesday. Ghimpeteanu was 3-9-0 before the trade with a 3.61 goals-against-average and a .920 save percentage. The Nordiques didn’t give up a player in the transaction.

The move was made due to Owen Liskiewicz being called up to the Maryland Black Bears of the NAHL.

Ghimpeteanu spent last season with the New England Stars, going 15-3-1 with a 1.67 goals-against-average and .931 save percentage.

“I am doing whatever it takes to get to Chicago,” Ghimpeteanu said. “Coming from a team like the Maine Wild, it did help prepare for all the shots. It definitely helped me get better. It was little nervous coming into the game. It’s a big responsibility. There were a lot of fans that were awesome tonight, big shoes to fill.”

The victory also clinched the Coastal Division for the Nordiques, who will have the No. 1 seed for the divisional playoffs. If they get through the divisional playoffs, they would then head to Fraser Cup Championship to face the other five divisional champions in Woodridge, Illinois, just outside of Chicago.

Valeri Rykov had two goals and two assists to lead the way offensively. Colby Audette and Sergei Anisimov each had a goal and an assist and Josh Sanchez contributed a goal.

“Valeri has had at least four points (seven out of the eight games) since he has been here,” Robichaud said. “Sergei is a big body out in front (of the net).”

The Nordiques went on their first power play of the game at the 3:04 mark, and Rykov gave them a 1-0 lead 69 seconds later.

Colby Audette potted his 37th goal of the season with eight minutes left in the first period.

On their fifth power play of the game, Joshua Sanchez gave the Nordiques a 3-0 lead at the 7:12 mark of the middle frame, the period’s only goal.

“Our power play was good, I think we had four goals,” Robichaud said. “We are an offensive team. At times it works in our favor, and at times it can bite us in the (behind). Cole Ouellette and JP Chauvin do a good job at the top keep keeping up the pressure and pushing the pace on the power play.”

In the third period, Sergei Anisimov stretched the lead to 4-0 at the 7:57 mark — seven seconds into the power play that saw Northeast’s Colin Day go off for cross checking.

Things got testy midway through the period as Armand O’Keefe and Hans Watson were sent to the showers for the Nordiques for fighting. Dylan Figueroa and Preston Phelps were sent off for fighting for the Generals, and Tami Merilainen was given a 10-minute misconduct for Northeast.

Rykov scored his second of the game on the power play with 8:27 remaining in the game. The Nordiques were 4-for-8 on the man advantage. The Generals were 2-for-5.

Northeast took advantage of late-period power plays as Marc Faia and Deacon More found the back of the net.

“There was the fight, we scored, then we took a penalty — slashing, a lazy penalty,” Robichaud said. “That got the momentum away from us. We were going to keep rolling being up 5-0 at that point. We took that penalty and they scored their first goal there, and what a buzz kill.”

L/A’s JP Chauvin and Northeast’s Carson Asper battle for a loose puck at center ice during Saturday night action at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee. (Ron Morin photos)