Maine Hockey Journal

Coleman battled back in Pirates victory

Portland, ME – There’s nothing like a little home cooking for the Portland Pirates. They continue to play well at the Cumberland County Civic Center, improving their record to 12-4 as they held back a late third period rush to beat the Worcester Sharks 3-2 in the first of back-to-back games at the Civic Center on Friday night.

The Pirates were helped by the solid goaltending effort from Gerald Coleman, who made 24 saves in the victory. This despite after having a tough game on Tuesday night at Alfond Arena in Orono and in a bit of a surprise, Dineen went back with 6-5, 215-pound netminder.

Coleman so far has had an inconsistent season. In his last five starts, he’s been on an up-and-down rollercoaster with a 3-2 record. He’s been at such a high, getting a 1-0 shutout victory against the Springfield Falcons to the lows of having two poor games against the Manchester Monarchs.

For Coleman, it was about finding his groove and getting his confidence back, which he felt he did in this game.

It wasn’t just Coleman, but the Pirates were also much better defensively against the Sharks. After playing a Monarchs team, which exploited the Pirates weaknesses on the penalty kill. Portland was able to regroup, killing all five power play opportunities for Worcester.

The Pirates also received offense at key times, including the opening goal just 58 seconds into the game by Brendan Mikkelson.

Although the Pirates gave the goal back shortly after, they were able to grab the lead toward the end of the period when newcomer Michal Birner, who is best friends with fellow compatriot and former Pirate Ladislav Smid, tipped the shot by Sharks goalie Thomas Greiss.

Geoff Platt extended the Pirates lead to 3-1 late in the second period.

For the Pirates, when they lead after 40 minutes of play they’re 7-0-1 so they were in pretty good shape.

In the third period, the Sharks poured on the pressure, getting an early goal on a wraparound by Riley Armstrong just 2:20 into the period. However, after that the Pirates were able to withstand the pressure from the Sharks.

Going into the Christmas break, the Pirates will try to keep the momentum tomorrow night when play the second of back-to-back games with the Sharks.

Official Scoresheet

Game Recap by PortlandPirates.com

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