The Worcester Railers headed to Manchester to take on the Monarchs Sunday afternoon riding the momentum wave of two great wins already this weekend and looking for a three in three sweep of ECHL North Division rivals.
Things started off well for Worcester when Nick Sorkin banged home rebound of Josh Holmstom’s shot at 3:09 of the opening period for the quick 1-0 lead. Matty Gaudreau had the secondary assist on the goal.
Manchester got the equalizer at 4:56 when Joe Sullivan took it to the goal himself on a two on one rush and beat Railers netminder Mitch Gillam. The Monarchs then took the lead at 8:06 after Tony Cameranesi finished off a three on two break in.
Things got worse for Worcester in the second period when Manchester lit the lamp three more times in the middle stanza. David Kolomatis scored a power play goal at 1:21, Cameranesi followed that up with an even strength goal at 12:05, and Sam Kurker added another power play tally at 18:55. Cameranesi’s second goal of the game chased Gillam from the game and Evan Buitenhuis went into the net in relief.
Tyler Barnes added a little bit of respectability to the score when he fired a Tommy Panico pass from between the circles over the shoulder of Manchester goaltender Cole Kehler, with the secondary assist going to Tommy Kelley at 5:13 of the third, but it was far too little, far too late as the Railers failed once again to take fourth place in the North Division.
Scratches for the Railers were Bo Brauer, Malcolm Gould (14-day IR/lower), Kyle McKenzie (14-day IR/upper), Tyler Mueller (14-day IR/upper), Matt Schmalz (Day to day/upper), Alex Vanier (Day to day/lower), and Dylan Willick. Evan Buitenhuis started the game as the back-up goaltender and entered the game at 12:05 of the second period after the Monarchs fourth goal.
It’s only been three days since the ECHL jersey switch that saw teams going from wearing their darks at home to their whites, and we’ve already had an exception. With the Monarchs wearing a black “Innovation Night” specialty jersey Worcester went with their whites.
Unless Head Coach Jamie Russell changes the plans after Sunday’s debacle, the Railers will have Monday off. At some point tomorrow we’ll be seeing the announcement of Worcester releasing Kevin Hart again as Hart has to be back at his usual job Monday morning. The Railers will fly to Toronto Tuesday for Worcester’s Wednesday morning game against Brampton. That night they’ll fly on to St John’s for a pair of games next weekend against the Newfoundland Growlers.
In some Manchester Monarchs news, the franchise is officially for sale. The ownership group, PPI Sports LLC, has hired Maryland based The Sports Advisory Group, who help in the sale of pro sports franchises. That’s the same organization that facilitated the deal between former owners Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG) and PPI Sports LLC. 210Sports contacted two groups via email that reportedly showed interest in purchasing the team during the previous sale, and neither chose to comment about any future possibilities. One did mention that with the Boston Bruins ECHL affiliation up for grabs after this season it would be wise to enter into an agreement with them prior to purchasing the Monarchs. Attendance has declined significantly over the last few seasons in Manchester. A well placed source in the community says that while the Monarchs officially averaged 2,793 fans per game last season the turnstile count was significantly lower.
On this date in Worcester hockey history…in 1995 Roy Mitchell scored his only game winning goal of the season in the IceCats 5-3 win over the Portland Pirates. A late empty net goal by John Carter would seal the victory…in 2010 Steven Zalewski had a shorthanded goal and an assist in the WorSharks 3-1 win over the Manitoba Moose. Benn Ferriero and Brandon Mashinter had the other goals for Worcester, while Alex Stalock had 39 saves for his 25th win of the season. He’d finish the campaign with 39 victories…in 2018 Brock Beukeboom and Matty Gaudreau both had a goal and an assist to lead the Railers in their second consecutive 5-2 win over Quad City. Chris Langkow and Nick Saracino both tacked on a goal and an assist.
The three stars of the game were
1. MAN – 12 Tony Cameranesi
2. MAN – 24 Michael Doherty
3. MAN – 17 Spencer Watson
The 210Sports Player of the Game is Nick Sorkin.
Even Strength Lines
Almeida / Hitchcock / Barnes
Sorkin / Holmstrom / Gaudreau
Kosorenkov / Kelley / Hudson
Doherty / Cornell
Panico / MacKinnon
Hart / Quenneville
Worcester 1 0 1 – 2
Manchester 2 3 0 – 5
1st Period-1, Worcester, Sorkin 9 (Holmstrom, Gaudreau), 3:09. 2, Manchester, Sullivan 6 4:56. 3, Manchester, Cameranesi 11 (Doherty, Wyszomirski), 8:06. Penalties-Sorkin Wor (cross-checking, unsportsmanlike conduct), 18:51.
2nd Period-4, Manchester, Kolomatis 8 (Pierog, Cameranesi), 1:21 (PP). 5, Manchester, Cameranesi 12 (Watson, Doherty), 12:05. 6, Manchester, Kurker 6 (Watson, Walsh), 18:55 (PP). Penalties-Sullivan Man (tripping), 2:47; Pierog Man (roughing), 4:11; Wyszomirski Man (high-sticking), 8:42; Panico Wor (cross-checking), 17:20.
3rd Period-7, Worcester, Barnes 12 (Panico, Kelley), 5:13. Penalties-Shoup Man (roughing), 6:38; Cornell Wor (cross-checking), 10:54; Almeida Wor (high-sticking), 16:36; Miromanov Man (hooking), 17:54.
Shots on Goal-Worcester 12-13-10-35. Manchester 17-13-6-36.
Power Play Opportunities-Worcester 0 / 5; Manchester 2 / 5.
Goalies-Worcester, Gillam 12-11-0-1 (24 shots-20 saves); Buitenhuis 7-7-2-1 (12 shots-11 saves). Manchester, Kehler 5-4-0-0 (35 shots-33 saves).
Referees-Andrea Barone (13).
Linesmen-William Kingdon (58), AJ Potvin (78).