Maine Hockey Journal

Pirates Shark-Bitten

Worcester, Mass. – The effort was certainly there. Unfortunately the Portland Pirates couldn’t grab a hold of lady luck as they fell in a shootout, 3-2 to the Worcester Sharks in front of 6,049 at the DCU Center on Saturday night.

In the last two games, the Pirates have outshot its opponent 85-54; however, they have only been able to muster three goals on the opposition.

“You rattle off that many shots, you’d like to think that you are generating some good offense,â€? said Pirates Coach Kevin Dineen. “But then again, the real way to tell is by what the scoreboard [reads] at the end of the night.â€?

Worcester defenseman Justin Kurtz was called for slashing at 2:20 of the second period. Just as the penalty was winding down, Bjorn Melin skated to the slot, firing a shot on goal. A scrum ensued in front as newly acquired forward Matt Keith took a whack at the rebound, but it was Clay Wilson who found the back of the net, streaking to the right post, beating Sharks’ goaltender Thomas Greiss to give the Pirates the 1-0 lead at 4:07 of the second period.

Portland continued to pour on the shots, but couldn’t capitalize.

That would come back to haunt them later.

Just 1:12 into the third period, while skating 4-on-3, Mathieu Darche scored his team-leading 23rd goal of the season when the puck just squeezed between the legs of Pirates’ goaltender Dov Grumet-Morris to tie the game at 1-1.

Only 1:15 later, the Sharks took a 2-1 lead as the Pirates committed a defensive blunder leading to a turnover while trying to clear the puck. Tom Cavanagh sent a tape-to-tape cross-ice pass to Mike Iggulden, parked at the far post, popping the one-timer into the open net.

The Pirates scored their second power play goal of the game when Matt Keith earned his second point of the night to tie the game at 2-2. Skating down the nearside boards, Keith fired a laser from the right hashmark, beating Greiss to far opposite corner with 11:19 left in the game.

Both clubs had several quality chances to grab the go-ahead goal, but each respective goaltender made highlight reel saves.

In the overtime period, Tomas Plihal was whistled for high-sticking at the 1:13, giving the Pirates a 4-on-3. Zenon Konopka, on the crease’s doorstep, almost ended the game with several whacks, but Greiss was able to pounce on the puck, forcing a whistle.

Likewise, near the end of the extra frame, Grumet-Morris had to stand on his head making several saves as Brett Skinner served two minutes for hooking.

In the shootout period, Bjorn Melin, Colby Genoway and Brett Skinner were held scoreless for Portland. Mathieu Darche and Mike Iggulden scored for Worcester to give them the shootout win.

Dov Grumet-Morris made 35 saves on 37 shots, but despite the results he’s risen to the challenge, playing quality hockey.

At the other end, Thomas Greiss made 47 saves in the victory.

Plank Notes:
– Sebastien Caron was recalled to Anaheim yesterday after the 2-1 loss to Portland. He was flying to St. Paul to meet the team for their Sunday game against the Wild. Mike Wall is still expected to get the start.
– Tim Brent scored for Team Canada on Saturday as they defeated EHC Eisbaren Berlin 5-2. They will play in the tournament final on Sunday against host team HC Davos who they defeated 6-3 earlier in the week.
-The Pirates are back at home tomorrow to take on the Hartford Wolf Pack. Game time is 5:35pm.

Three Stars:
1. WOR – Thomas Greiss (47SH/45SV)
2. WOR – Mike Iggulden (1G, +1)
3. POR – Clay Wilson (1G, 1A)

Shots on Goal:
POR 13-15-17-2-0=47
WOR 9-10-14-4-1=38

Goals by Period:
POR 0-1-1-0-0=2
WOR 0-0-2-0-1=3

Power Play Summary:
Portland Pirates PP – 2-for-8
Worcester Sharks PP – 1-for-5

Scoring Summary:
2. POR Wilson, (5) (Moran, Keith), 4:07 (PP)
3. WOR Darche, (23) (Traverse, Staubitz), 1:12 (PP)
3. WOR Iggulden, (11) (Cavanagh, Plihal), 2:17
3. POR Keith, (3) (Wilson, Melin), 8:41 (PP)

Penalty Summary:
1 – POR Carter, 14:11 – Holding , 2 min (PP)
1 – WOR Olson, 17:06 – Roughing , 2 min (PP)
1 – POR Wirtanen, 17:26 – Roughing , 2 min (PP)
1 – POR Genoway, 20:00 – Slashing , 2 min (PP)
2 – WOR Kurtz, 2:20 – Slashing , 2 min (PP)
2 – WOR Staubitz, 4:25 – Slashing , 2 min (PP)
2 – WOR Mink, 11:55 – Slashing , 2 min (PP)
2 – WOR Prudden, 15:50 – Roughing , 2 min (PP)
2 – POR Melin, 19:27 – Diving (64.2), 2 min
2 – WOR Stafford, 19:27 – Hooking , 2 min
3 – POR Moran, 0:18 – Hooking , 2 min (PP)
3 – WOR Ferguson, 7:56 – Interference , 2 min (PP)
3 – WOR Rome, 11:32 – Hooking , 2 min (PP)
OT – WOR Plihal, 1:13 – High-sticking , 2 min (PP)
OT – POR Skinner, 3:28 – Hooking , 2 min (PP)

Shootout Summary:
Bjorn Melin – No Goal
Colby Genoway – No Goal
Zenon Konopka – No Goal
Brett Skinner – No Goal

Total = 0

Mike Iggulden – Goal
Graham Mink – No Goal
Mathieu Darche – Goal

Total = 2

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