Today in Worcester hockey history: October 24


1997 at New Haven 2-1 loss
The Worcester IceCats played about 25 minutes of the 60 minute contest, and while goaltender Fred Cassivi kept them in the game the ‘Cats offense was essentially a no-show in a 2-1 loss to the Beast of New Haven. Kevin Brown got New Haven on the board at 13:43 of the first period, and Nolan Pratt made it 2-0 at 4:03 of the third period with a five on three power play goal. Michal Handzus made it 2-1 at 17:55 with a five-hole goal assisted by Chris Kenady, but that would be all the scoring. Cassivi ended the game with 22 saves, many of them qualifying as “high quality”.

1998 vs New Haven 3-2 loss
The Worcester IceCats trailed by three goals heading into the third period and that proved to be a hole too deep to crawl out of in a 3-2 loss to The Beast of New Haven. Craig Ferguson would score twice in the first period for New Haven, the first just 42 seconds into the contest and the second at 15:34 on the power play. Craig MacDonald would make it a 3-0 Beast lead with a goal at 3:54 of the second period. In the third Jason Widmer would get the ‘Cats on the board, with assists to Derek Bekar and Jan Horacek, at 8:21. Just 23 seconds later Reed Low would make it a one goal game with Bekar picking up the helper. But despite outshooting New Haven 19-3 in the final frame that was as close as the IceCats would get. Rich Parent had 19 saves in the loss.

2001 vs Manchester 6-2 win
The Worcester IceCats scored four third period goals to pull away and defeat the Monarchs 6-2. Greg Davis opened the scoring for the IceCats at 3:45 of the first period, assisted by Dale Clarke and Barret Jackman. Justin Papineau made it a 2-0 lead at 12:30 with Eric Nickulas and Marc Brown picking up helpers. The Monarchs would come back to tie it on goals by former ‘Cats forward Derek Bekar unassisted at 18:21 of the middle period and a power play goal by Randy Robitaille at 1:04 of the third. Clarke would put Worcester back in the lead at 7:20, with Papineau and Brown assisting. Igor Valeev made it a two goal lead again with his first pro tally at 10:17. Eric Boguniecki and Ed Campbell had the assist on the play. Jamie Pollock, from Mike Van Ryn and Campbell, made it 5-2 at 14:09, and Boguniecki closed out the scoring at 14:50 with Valeev and Jeff Panzer helping. Cody Rudkowsky had 32 saves for the win.

2003 vs Springfield 5-3 win
(ICECATS) Three first period power play goals boosted the Worcester IceCats to a 5-3 win over the Springfield Falcons Friday night at Worcester’s Centrum Centre. It was the ‘Cats first home win of the 2003-04 season, and their second overall. IceCats rookies Aaron MacKenzie and Trevor Byrne collected their first pro goals, while Marc Brown and Jeff Panzer each registered a goal and two assists. Brown’s goal gave Worcester a 3-0 lead in the first. It was his 67th in a ‘Cats uniform, setting a new franchise record. Reinhard Divis stopped 33 shots in his second win of the season. Peter Ferraro countered a 4-0 Worcester lead with two of the Falcons’ three goals while also picking up an assist. Steve Martins sealed the game for Worcester in the closing moments with an empty-netter.

2004 at Providence 2-1 win OT
The Worcester IceCats got an overtime goal from Jeff Hoggan to defeat the Providence Bruins in a fight filled Sunday afternoon game at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center. Jay McClement gave Worcester the lead with a shorthanded unassisted goal at 3:26 of the opening period. Tempers flared at 4:57 when the ‘Cats Robin Gomez and Brendan Walsh dropped the gloves. While that fight was going on Erkki Rajamaki and Brent Thompson decided to go. They received game misconducts after their battle for the secondary altercation. At 11:34 of the second period Gomez dropped the mitts again, this time with Steve Munn. In the first and second periods there were four sets of matching minors for either roughing or unsportsmanlike conduct. David Gove tied the game for the Baby-Bs at 12:31 of the third, setting up Hoggan’s overtime heroics at 2:53, assisted by Mike Mottau. Curtis Sanford made 26 saves in the win.

2008 vs Providence 3-1 loss
(WORSHARKS) The old adage says that one of the toughest things to do in sports is to beat a team twice in a row. That adage held true as Providence evened the season series against Worcester with a 3-1 victory. The scoring began in the middle of the first period when Mikko Lehtonen scored his second goal of the season. Mike Marquardt backhanded a shot in front of the net that deflected to Lehtonen on the left, who guided the puck through an open space to put the Bruins ahead. Providence kept the pressure on the Sharks, when Marquardt set up another impressive goal. The left wing fought through a glut of Shark defenders and dropped the puck to center Wacey Rabbit, who swiftly deked Worcester goalie Thomas Greiss and picked up his second goal this season. In the middle of the second period, Worcester was able to capitalize a two-man advantage and cut its two-goal deficit in half. Ryan Vesce corralled the puck behind the goal line and quickly spotted Derek Joslin near the blue line. Joslin faked a slap shot, only to wrist one through the throng in front of the net and past Rask. With just two and a half minutes left, though, Martins Karsums and Rabbit found themselves ahead of the pack on a breakaway and were able to convert and solidify the Bruin lead. Karsums created some separation between his teammate and then dished the puck to Rabbit, who one-timed the puck past Greiss. The loss brings Worcester’s record to 2-3-0-0, while the win brings Providence’s record to 5-0-1-0. NOTES: Three Stars: (3) Wacey Rabbit (2) Matt Marquardt (1) Tuukka Rask…The DCU Center welcomed 3316 fans through its gates…Worcester killed a 28 second 5-on-3 disadvantage at the end of the first period…Thomas Greiss saved 9 of 12 shots for the Sharks, while Rask saved 33 of 34…Worcester went 1/8 on the power play; Providence went 1/6 on the power play…There were no fights throughout the contest…Aubuchon Hardware and Chittenden Insurance were sponsors of the contest as Aubuchon Hardware’s celebrated it’s 100th anniversary celebrated.

2009 vs Springfield 1-0 win OT
(WORSHARKS) Logan Couture’s overtime goal tallies another win for Worcester and Alex Stalock made 18 saves in net for his first professional shutout in front of 3,222 at the DCU Center on Saturday night. The Sharks set the tone of the game early, coming out aggressive and attacking with high energy. At around seven minutes into the first period, Sharks defenseman Joe Loprieno took charge behind Stalock and made a block that could’ve proved costly for Worcester. With a season-high 17 shots on goal by Worcester and six shots by Springfield, the first period proved to be a contest of the goalies. Worcester’s Alex Stalock and Springfield’s Devan Dubnyk held the score at 0-0 at the end of the first period. The second period remained a deadlock. Despite many calculated passes and shots by Worcester, none made it past Falcons’ Dubnyk. Worcester held Springfield to a mere four additional shots on goal, thanks largely to the veteran defensive leadership of Danny Groulx, Joe Callahan, and Derek Joslin. Though tempers started to flare and several shoving matches ensued, there were no major penalties recorded by either team, and the score remained 0-0 through the end of the period. In the final period, both teams kicked it into high gear. Halfway through, Worcester’s Brandon Mashinter did his best to stir up some energy from his teammates by taking off the gloves and attempting a fight that was promptly broken up. Minutes later, a goal by Springfield was quickly recalled when referees realized it was kicked in, keeping the score at 0-0. Worcester surpassed their season high single-game 43 shots on goal with 44 in tonight’s regular play. After a turbulent overtime battle, Worcester’s rookie superstar Logan Couture scored at 3:49 to grab the win, 1-0. Tonight marked Couture’s third game winning goal of the season. Worcester improves their record to 5-1-0-1.

2010 vs Norfolk 4-3 win
(WORSHARKS) Tommy Wingels scored his first professional goal on a terrific individual rush late in the third period to give the Sharks their first home win of the 2010-11 season in a 4-3 victory over the Norfolk Admirals at the DCU Center on Sunday afternoon. Benn Ferriero (1-2-3), James Marcou and Andrew Desjardins also scored markers for Worcester and Alex Stalock made 30 saves in the matinee victory. Johan Harju scored twice for Norfolk and Cedric Desjardins made 26 saves for the Admirals. Worcester trailed late in the first period on a Norfolk goal by Johan Harju (3rd) when he deflected in a point shot at 17:41. The end of the first was reminiscent of how the third period in Saturday’s game ended, as the Sharks battled back to tie the game with under a minute remaining. Benn Ferriero netted his 5th goal of the season with 0:12 seconds left in the opening period slamming in a loose puck from the right circle. The game was tied at 1-1 after the first twenty minutes of play with Norfolk having the edge in shots, 10-4. The Sharks special teams once again took control of the game in the second period with a shorthanded and power play goal. Carrying the momentum over from the late first period goal, Andrew Desjardins scored a short handed goal at 0:50, his 1st of the season, to give the Sharks a 2-1 lead after a terrific rush. Midway through the period defenseman Nick Petrecki picked up a fighting major after a scrum in the corner resulting from Admirals forward Pierre-Cedric Labrie taking a boarding penalty. The Sharks scored on the ensuing power play as James Marcou picked up his 3rd goal of the season at 12:10 of the second jamming home a rebound past Desjardins.. The Sharks outshot the Admirals 11-8 in the period and led 3-1 heading into the third period. Norfolk came out strong in the third period and scored two unanswered goals 0:36 apart to tie the game at 3-3. Johan Harju scored his 2nd of the game and former Sharks forward Matt Fornataro followed with his 2nd of the season to complete the early comeback bid. But the Sharks responded with 5:36 remaining in the game, on a goal by Tommy Wingels, his 1st professional goal, to put the Sharks ahead to stay 4-3. Wingels stole the puck at the Sharks blue line and raced down the right wing and buried a snap shot for the game winner. Shots in the final frame were even at 11-11. The Sharks record improves to 2-2-1-1 (4 points) through six games.

2014 vs Syracuse 3-2 OTL
(WORSHARKS) The Worcester Sharks (3-1-1-0, 7pts) fell to 1-1-1-0 on their season long six game home stand following a 3-2 overtime loss to the visiting Syracuse Crunch (3-1-1-0, 7pts) in front 2,198 fans at the DCU Center on Friday evening. Konrad Abeltshauser and Micheal Haley scored for Worcester while Troy Grosenick made 30 saves in net in his 5th consecutive start in the overtime loss. Dalton Smith and Mike Angelidis scored in regulation for the Crunch before Nikita Nesterov won the game with a power play goal at 5:08 of overtime while Kristers Gudlevskis made 26 saves in net. For the 5th straight game, the Sharks would score first and take a 1-0 lead. Konrad Abeltshauser (1st) scored a power play marker from 15 feet on the backhand after he took a feed from the right corner from Freddie Hamilton at 7:54. Just 33 seconds later, Dalton Smith (1st) tied the score at 1-1 after the Sharks turned the puck over behind their net and Smith snapped a shot past Troy Grosenick at 8:27. Syracuse outshot Worcester 12-9 in the first period with the score tied at 1-1. Worcester was outshot 12-3 in the middle frame as Mike Angelidis (1st) gave the Crunch a 2-1 advantage at 9:58 as he fired home a bouncing puck from on top of the Worcester crease. There were two scraps in the second period as Micheal Haley (1st FM) tangled with Luke Witkowski (2nd FM) at 4:13 and Jimmy Bonneau (1st FM) exchanged blows with Dalton Smith (1st FM) at 4:58. Worcester trailed 2-1 after 40 minutes with the Crunch holding a 24-12 shot advantage through two periods. The Sharks poured it on in the third period and finally tied the score with 1:11 remaining in the third period with the goaltender pulled. Micheal Haley (4th) jammed home a loose puck after a wild goal mouth scramble to tie the score at 2-2 and force overtime. Worcester outshot Syracuse 16-6 in the third period. In overtime, Evan Trupp was whistled for tripping at 4:01 and the Crunch made the Sharks pay with a 4-on-3 power play goal. Nikita Nesterov (1st) fired home the game winner from the right circle with a wicked one timer shot at 5:08 as the Crunch took the game 3-2. The Sharks overall record falls to 3-1-1-0, 7pts and 1-1-1-0, 3pts at the DCU Center

2018 at Adirondack 4-1 loss
(RAILERS) The Worcester Railers HC (2-2-0-0, 4pts) scored first but couldn’t hold off the host Adirondack Thunder (4-2-0-0, 8pts) in a 4-1 loss in front of 1,864 fans at the Cool Insuring Arena on Wednesday evening. Nick Bligh was the only goal scorer for Worcester while Mitch Gillam made 42 saves in net in the loss. Desmond Bergin scored twice for the Thunder, including the game winner midway through the second period as the Railers fell to 1-2-0-0 on the road this season. Nick Bligh (1st) gave Worcester a 1-0 lead as he broke into the zone and sent a quick snap shot from 40 feet that beat netminder Colton Phinney on the blocker side at 6:17. Adirondack tied the score at 8:57 as James Henry sent a rocket from 30 feet on the rush down the left wing side past Mitch Gillam. Both teams went 0-1 on the power play as the Thunder held a 12-11 edge on shots through first period. Desmond Bergin (2nd) gave the Thunder a 2-1 advantage at 12:16 of the second period as he ripped a shot from the left slot through a screen for the only score on either side in the middle frame. Adirondack outshot Worcester 19-11 in the period as the Railers headed to the intermission down 2-1. Adirondack would tack two more on in the third period as Mike Szmatula (2nd) deflected a shot through at 1:10 and Desmond Bergin (3rd) buried an empty netter at 18:17. Mike Cornell (1stFM) and Jakob Reichert (1stFM) dropped the mitts at 18:55 as Worcester was outshot 15-6 in the final frame in the 4-1 loss.


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