Maine Hockey Journal

Pirates Keep on Rolling

Springfield, Mass. – Gerald Coleman is aware he has only so many chances if he wishes to make it to the NHL. Coleman made 23 saves in his return to the MassMutual Center as the Portland Pirates, scored three power play goals to defeat the Springfield Falcons 4-2 on Friday night.

Coleman, involved in the trade that sent former Pirates defenseman Shane O’Brien to Tampa Bay is thankful to have an opportunity to play, with a chance to play in NHL.

“Coming from a team like Springfield you see they’re going nowhere fast,” said Coleman. “They had their game, but now they’re struggling. Going from [Springfield] to Portland – everything is on the up and up. We’re [trying] to get into the playoff and every game is crucial ever since my first game we just seem to be getting better and better.”

The Falcons would get on the board first with a controversial goal at the 6:53 mark of the first period. With Petteri Wirtanen serving two minutes for hooking, Matt Smaby fired a shot on goal. The puck bounced off both post before Daniel Corso got his stick on the puck. It appeared the puck was short of crossing the goal line, but after several minutes of discussion it was ruled a goal.

The Pirates did all their damage in the second period as they score three power play goals with in a span of 2:39, including two goals during a five minute major on Marek Kvapil.

The Pirates first goal came at 7:06 of the second period when Ryan Carter was credited with his 11th of the season. Brian Salcido, at the top of the slot, fired a rocket shot, which Carter was able to get a piece, beating Falcons goaltender Karri Ramo.

Marek Kvapil was given a five minute major for high sticking after he clipped Greg Amadio. It didn’t take the Pirates long to capitalize as Brian Salcido notched his sixth of the season with a laser shot from the high-slot at 8:52 of the second period.

“He’s established his shot in the last couple games and I think that’s a confidence factor,” said Pirates Head Coach Kevin Dineen. “I liked [how] we were moving the puck down low and we had some good chances down low. It’s not cute, but that’s the way they have to go in.”

Salcido agreed he was finding his confidence.

“The big thing with me is confidence,” he said, “taking that extra spilt second to make a better play instead of panicking and forcing something that’s not there.”

Just 53 seconds later, Matt Keith found the back of the net when he sent a snap shot through the five-hole of Ramo, picking the far post as the Pirates built a 3-1 lead.

In the third period, the Falcons pulled to back within one goal as a Dan Cavanaugh fired a shot from the left face-off dot, a scrum developed around Coleman as P.J. Atherton tapped the puck into the net at 7:37 of the third period.

In what had to be the goal of the night, Mark Hartigan beat Sylvain Dufresne one-on-one with a dipsy-doodle move, then pulled Ramo to opposite post and lifted the puck into the net with 6:44 left in the game.

“That move should be on SportsCenter,” said Salcido. “That was unbelievable; he’s got incredible patience and composure with the puck. He sells his moves. He so good that it opens things up for him and everyone as to passing or shooting.”

Plank Notes:
– With the win, the Pirates are currently at .500 on the road with a record of 10-10-2-6. Last year, the Pirates set an AHL record for road wins with 27 wins.
– Mark Hartigan is now wearing #3, a number worn for the last season and a half by Pirates defenseman Aaron Rome. Hartigan has worn #3 for most of his career and when he was traded to Portland, he worn a #33 previously worn by Shawn Thornton. Rome will now wear #7.
– The Pirates return home to the Cumberland County Civic Center to face the defending Calder Cup Hershey Bears. Game time is 7:05pm.

Three Stars of the Game:
1. POR – Ryan Carter (1G, 1A)
2. POR – Brian Salcido (1G, 1A)
3. POR – Mark Hartigan (1G, 1A, +1)

Shots on Goal:
SPR 6-7-12=25
POR 12-15-7=34

Goals by Period:
SPR 1-0-1=2
POR 0-3-1=4

Power Play Summary:
Springfield Falcons PP – 1-for-7
Portland Pirates PP – 3-for-8

Scoring Summary:
1. SPR Corso, (15) (Smaby, Milley), 6:53 (PP)
2. POR Carter, (11) (Salcido, Wilson), 7:06 (PP)
2. POR Salcido, (6) (Carter, Wilson), 8:52 (PP)
2. POR Keith, (10) (Hartigan, Weinrich), 9:45 (PP)
3. SPR Atherton, (2) (Cavanaugh, Keller), 7:37
3. POR Hartigan, (25) , 13:16

Penalty Summary:
1 – POR Wirtanen, 6:31 – Hooking , 2 min (PP)
1 – SPR Smaby, 9:57 – Hooking , 2 min (PP)
2 – SPR Rogers, 6:27 – Holding , 2 min (PP)
2 – SPR Kvapil, 8:33 – Major – High-sticking , 5 min (3 PP)
2 – POR Weinrich, 12:39 – Elbowing , 2 min (PP)
2 – POR Weinrich, 12:39 – Unsportsmanlike conduct , 2 min (PP)
2 – SPR Egener, 18:15 – Cross-checking , 2 min (PP)
2 – POR Hartigan, 19:54 – Interference , 2 min (PP)
3 – SPR Milley, 8:11 – Hooking , 2 min (PP)
3 – POR Wirtanen, 8:37 – Roughing , 2 min (PP)
3 – SPR Atherton, 15:19 – Interference , 2 min (PP)
3 – POR Keith, 17:04 – Interference , 2 min (PP)
3 – POR Ferguson, 18:08 – Cross-checking , 2 min (PP)

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