The Moncton Wildcats own the best record in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League thanks to a strangulating defence. The Shawinigan Cataractes are right behind them in the standings, boasting the league's most explosive offence in the process.
Both teams survived serious scares to extend long winning streaks Thursday night.
Randy Cameron had the lone goal in the shootout as the Wildcats remained the lone QMJHL team without a regulation loss, beating the P.E.I. Rocket 3-2 for their eighth straight win.
The Cataractes kept pace, earning their eighth victory in a row with a 3-2 triumph over the Victoriaville Tigres.
The Wildcats (15-0-2-0) controlled play for the majority of the game - outshooting the Rocket 46-25 through three periods and overtime - but still needed Matt Eagles' 10th goal of the season with 4:31 left in regulation to force extra time.
P.E.I. skaters Chris Doyle and Matthew Lachaine were unsuccessful in the shootout, as were Moncton shooters Matthew Bissonnette and Eagles. After Wildcats netminder Nicola Riopel stopped Rocket forward Simon Olsson to open the third round, Cameron beat Rocket goaltender Bobby Nadeau to extend Moncton's streak of games with at least one point to 17.
Elsewhere in QMJHL action Thursday, it was: Halifax 6, Saint John 3.
At Moncton, N.B., Brandon Gormley had the other goal in regulation for the Wildcats, who sit second in the Canadian Hockey League rankings. Riopel stopped 23 shots to preserve the victory, running his record to 14-1.
The Wildcats have allowed a league-low 28 goals on the season, and have been especially stingy during their recent run, surrendering just 10 goals over their eight-game winning streak.
Chris Doyle provided the lone offence for the Rocket (7-9-0-2), scoring two power-play goals in a 41-second span of the second period. That gave P.E.I. a surprising 2-0 lead, but Gormley's goal just under five minutes later cut the lead to one.
Nadeau fell to 6-9 on the season with a 43-save performance in defeat.
At Victoriaville, Que., Maxime Legault scored the go-ahead goal 5:28 into the third period as the Cataractes used a rare defensive gem to beat the Tigres.
Charles-Olivier Roussel and Matthew Pistilli had the other goals for Shawinigan (15-4-0-0), ranked seventh in the CHL. Pistilli's goal extended his points streak to eight games (13 goals, seven assists), while league scoring leader Cedric Lalonde-McNicoll had an assist to stretch his streak to eight (seven goals, 13 assists).
The three-goal effort increased the Cataractes' total to 95 for the season - 20 more than the second-place Drummondville Tigres. Thursday's performance marked the first time during its winning streak that Shawinigan failed to score at least four goals.
Olivier Hinse and Jonathan Bonneau, on a penalty shot, replied for the Tigres (10-10-0-0), who have lost two in a row.
Gabriel Girard stopped 24 shots to earn the win for Shawinigan.
Kevin Poulin made 29 saves in a losing cause for Victoriaville.
Mooseheads 6, Sea Dogs 3
At Halifax, the Mooseheads scored three goals during a 59-second stretch of the first period in a victory over struggling Saint John.
Alexis Piette led the way with a pair of goals for Halifax (6-11-0-0), while Gabriel Desjardins, Gerrad Grant, Jessyko Bernard in Yuri Cheremetiev added singles.
David Stich, Payton Liske and Kyle Paige countered for the Sea Dogs (9-8-1-0), who lost their third straight game.