Maine Hockey Journal

Playoffs in Sight for Pirates

Springfield, MA – What a difference a week makes.

This time last week, it appeared the Pirates wouldn’t be in this year’s Calder Cup playoffs, but the Pirates have won their last four games and now have the playoffs in sight after defeating the Springfield Falcons 5-1 in front of a crowd of 5,322 at the MassMutual Center on Saturday night.

After a week, the Pirates (80 points) are currently four points out of the fourth and final playoff spot currently held by Providence, who lost to Lowell on Saturday.

The first period was the Joe Motzko show as he put the Pirates out front 2-0 by notching a couple of special team goals.

At 5:58, with Greg Amadio in the box for hooking, Motzko was in the right place at the right time as he intercepted a pass, breaking in untouched, beating Falcons goaltender Jonathan Boutin between the five-hole to give the Pirates a 1-0 lead.

With the goal, Motzko set an AHL record for unassisted goals with 11.

Motzko added his second goal of the night when he scored his 27th goal of the season at 10:40, while on a power play. Drew Miller slipped Motzko the puck, who ripped a shot from the top of the left face-off circle as the Pirates pulled to a 2-0 lead.

The Falcons was as close as they would get all night when Justin Fletcher redirected shot from Adam Henrich, beating Pirates goaltender Gerald Coleman at 5:33 of the second period to pull within a goal at 2-1.

Ryan Carter regained the Pirates two-goal lead when he flipped a shot by Boutin, while falling down with 4:58 left in the period as the Pirates scored their second power play goal of the game.

Sean Blanchard scored his third goal of the week at 5:29 of the third period, giving the Pirates a 4-1 lead. Bobby Ryan, Anaheim’s first round draft pick in the 2005 NHL draft, was credited with an assist on the play.

Ryan arrived in Springfield on Friday night to join the Pirates after Owen Sound was eliminated by the London Knights in the OHL playoffs.

Just 1:15 later, Ryan notched his second assist of the night when Drew Miller put the game out of reach as he snapped a shot, beating Boutin low glove side, giving the Pirates a commanding 5-1 lead.

Plank Notes:
– The Pirates have killed off 24 straight power plays, killing off all seven in the game versus the Falcons.
– Bobby Bolt’s Kingston Frontenacs lost to the Oshawa Generals in the best of seven series four games to one. Bolt could join the Pirates sometime in the next week; also joining him could be Frontenacs teammate Matt Auffrey.
– The Pirates will face the Falcons again as they return to the Cumberland County Civic Center. Game time 4:05pm.

Three Stars of the Game:
1. POR – Joe Motzko (2G, +1, GWG)
2. POR – Drew Miller (1G, 2A, +1)
3. POR – Gerald Coleman (38SH/37SV)

Shots on Goal:
POR 12-8-8=28
SPR 8-13-17=38

Goals by Period:
POR 2-1-2=5
SPR 0-1-0=1

Power Play Summary:
Portland Pirates PP – 2-for-4
Springfield Falcons PP – 0-for-7

Goaltending Summary:
POR – Gerald Coleman (5-4-0) 38 Shots/37 Saves
SPR – Jonathan Boutin (7-15-1) 28 Shots/23 Saves

Scoring Summary:
1. POR Motzko, (26) , 5:58 (SH)
1. POR Motzko, (27) (Miller, Wilson), 10:40 (PP)
2. SPR Fletcher, (1) (Henrich), 5:33
2. POR Carter, (14) (Miller), 15:02 (PP)
3. POR Blanchard, (3) (Ryan, Hartigan), 5:29
3. POR Miller, (13) (Ryan, Ferguson), 6:44

Penalty Summary:
1 – POR Amadio, 4:37 – Hooking , 2 min (PP)
1 – SPR Baby, 6:26 – Tripping , 2 min (PP)
1 – SPR Keller, 8:54 – Tripping , 2 min (PP)
1 – POR Dingle, 10:44 – Tripping , 2 min (PP)
1 – POR Salcido, 19:00 – Hooking , 2 min (PP)
2 – POR Amadio, 4:41 – Fighting , 5 min
2 – SPR Wanvig, 4:41 – Fighting , 5 min
2 – SPR Rosehill, 6:48 – Tripping , 2 min (PP)
2 – POR Salcido, 7:57 – Slashing , 2 min (PP)
2 – POR Keith, 11:34 – Cross-checking , 2 min
2 – POR Salcido, 11:34 – Tripping , 2 min (PP)
2 – SPR Egener, 11:34 – Roughing , 2 min
2 – SPR Rosehill, 13:56 – Tripping , 2 min (PP)
3 – POR Gillies, 7:08 – Charging , 2 min (PP)
3 – POR Blanchard, 14:10 – High-sticking , 2 min (PP)

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply