Today in Worcester hockey history: December 27

25B

1995 vs Providence 3-3 tie
The Worcester IceCats lost two one-goal leads and then needed to make a comeback themselves in a 3-3 tie with the Bruins. Jarrett Deuling got the ‘Cats on the board at 5:51 of the opening period with a goal assisted by Jason Widmer and Derek Armstrong. Alexei Kasatonov would tie it for the Baby-Bs at 7:20. Patrice Tardif put the IceCats back in the lead at 13:34 with help from Fred Knipscheer and Roy Mitchell. Providence would tie it at 2:03 of the middle period on a goal by Bill McCauley. The Bruins then took the lead on a Martin Simard strike at 9:25. Kevin Sawyer tied the game 1:43 into the third, with Armstrong assisting. Fans at the Centrum in Worcester and NESN saw a wide open overtime period where the teams combined for ten shots, but neither could light the lamp in a 3-3 tie. Rob Tallas finished the game with 42 saves for the Bruins, and Eric Fichaud had 37 for the ‘Cats.

1997 at Hartford 4-2 loss
The Worcester IceCats and Wolf Pack were tied after two period, but Hartford connected on two of its six shots in the frame while the ‘Cats went scoreless as Hartford won the game 4-2. Neither team scored in the first period, but it didn’t take long for the IceCats to grab a goal in the second frame as Michal Handzus connected just 39 seconds into the frame on the power play when he tipped Terry Virtue’s shot into the net. Terry Hollinger had the secondary assist on the play. Daniel Goneau tied the game at 6:02 on the power play, and Christian Dube gave the Pack the lead with a shorthanded goal at 13:48. On that same IceCats power play chance Nick Naumenko tied it 2-2, with Tyler Willis and Stephane Roy helping. P.J. Stock gave Hartford the lead at 3:35 of the third, and Ken Gernander iced the game for Hartford with an empty net goal at 19:25. Fred Cassivi had 22 saves in the loss.

1998 vs Lowell 2-2 tie
The Worcester IceCats and Lowell Lock Monsters combined for 70 shots on goal, but each team could only score twice in a 2-2 tie between the squads. Ted Crowley got Lowell on the board with a power play goal at 2:26 of the first period. Jamal Mayers tied it for the ‘Cats with a power play goal at 19:04 of the second period. Stephane Roy and Tyson Nash had the assists. Jochen Hecht gave Worcester the lead at 4:25 of the third period, with Rory Fitzpatrick and Shayne Toporowski getting the helpers. Former IceCats forward Sean Haggerty tied the game for the Lock Monsters at 9:16. Rich Parent earned the tie making 28 saves.

2002 vs Albany 4-1 win
(ICECATS) Before a dazzling crowd of 6,442 at Worcester’s Centrum Centre, the Worcester IceCats snapped their four-game winless skid with a 4-1 victory over the Albany River Rats Friday night. Tied 1-1 going into the third period, Jason Dawe’s wrist-shot at 5:37 deflected off a defender’s stick and into the net, launching a three-goal surge for the ‘Cats over the next six-plus minutes. Worcester goaltender Curtis Sanford was credited with an assist on the goal after he made a sliding stacked-pad save on an Albany 2-on-1. John Pohl took the puck and fed Dawe from the defensive zone. Jeff Panzer followed up on Dawe’s goal, while Mark Rycroft capped the scoring for the IceCats at 11:51. Marc Brown factored into three goals, earning the primary assist on the Panzer and Dawe goals. He also set up Pohl, who tied the game 1-1 in the second period.

2003 at Manchester 6-4 loss
Despite giving up an early goal the Worcester IceCats ended the first twenty minutes with a two goal lead, but a four goal middle stanza from the Monarchs was too much for the ‘Cats to overcome in a 6-4 loss in Manchester. Just six seconds into the game Johnny Pohl was called for tripping, which led to Scott Barney’s power play goal at 0:46. Despite being outshot 21-11 in the frame the next three goals would belong to Worcester, starting with Marc Brown scoring at 6:46, assisted by Mike Glumac. Ernie Hartlieb would give the ‘Cats the lead at 8:29, with Brown and Jeff Panzer getting the helpers. Blake Evans, with assists to Trevor Byrne and Peter Sejna, made it 3-1 at 12:36. The early part of the second was all Monarchs, with Scott Barney scoring 28 seconds into the frame. Chris Schmidt followed with a shorthanded, penalty shot goal at 2:23, and Steve Kelly (7:11) and Brad Church (7:45) both tacked on power play goals. Glumac stopped the bleeding at 16:49, with Igor Valeev and Evans getting the assists. Manchester outshot Worcester 17-9 in the third, but the game was still in doubt until Joe Rullier hit an empty net with 12 seconds remaining. ‘Cats starting netminder Reinhard Divis was lifted after the Kelly goal, stopping 25 of 29 shots. Curtis Sanford ended up taking the loss, stopping 18 of 19.

2007 at Lowell 4-3 OTL
(WORSHARKS) Opening up a stretch of seven games in ten days, the Worcester Sharks fought from behind to earn a standings point but fell to the Lowell Devils 4-3 in overtime at the Tsongas Arena in Lowell on Thursday evening. Worcester applied pressure early with six shots over the first seven minutes, including a close-range try from Mike Iggulden that demanded a sprawling save from Devils netminder Frank Doyle, who stopped 27 shots in the victory. The game’s first penalty, a holding the stick call against Lowell centerman Petr Vrana, gave Worcester a chance to break through. Dan Spang threaded a feed to Tomas Plihal, who controlled with his back to the net before backhanding his fourth goal of the year over the glove-side shoulder of Doyle to give the Sharks a 1-0 lead. Lowell struck back quickly, however, as Jason Ryznar cleaned up the rebound of a Petr Vrana try that Sharks backstop Thomas Greiss had kicked away. A late first period holding call to Craig Valette gave the Devils a man advantage to start the middle frame, and just 27 seconds after intermission Stephen Gionta capitalized for the hosts. Vrana and Clarke cycled to Gionta at the top of the right wing circle, and the winger blasted a rocket past Greiss for his 11th goal of the season. The assist to Vrana was his 30th point in just 32 games. Lowell missed a golden chance to open up a two goal lead when tip-in try by Devils redliner Nicklas Bergfors struck iron and slid wide. Just one minute later the pipes again worked in Worcester’s favor. Josh Prudden’s wrist shot struck the upright behind Doyle but the puck fell neatly onto the stick of Dennis Packard, who pulled the Sharks even at 4:53 of the second period. One more strange circumstance, this time favoring the Devils, was due before play settled down. Released from the penalty box after serving a hooking minor, Ryznar found himself in a footrace with Lukas Kaspar for a puck drifting into the Sharks zone. Fighting off a hook from Kaspar, Ryznar beat Greiss to give Lowell a 3-2 lead just seven seconds after his own penalty expired. That score would hold until the 3:32 mark of the third period, when Worcester edged even again courtesy of an aggressive wraparound try from Prudden that snuck in behind Doyle amongst a crowd. Seconds later, the Sharks were recipients of yet another beneficial bounce, as Lowell’s Ryan Murphy was denied a go-ahead goal by the upright behind Greiss. Worcester managed 13 shots in the final period but couldn’t break through, and Bergfors capped the evening just 20 seconds into overtime, tallying the gamewinner for the Devils on an assist from Patrick Davis.

2009 vs Lowell 3-2 win
(WORSHARKS) The Worcester Sharks scored first and never looked back as they defeated the Lowell Devils by a score of 3-2 at the DCU Center Sunday night. It was the second victory of the season for the Sharks against the Devils and moves Worcester back into the 4th spot in the Atlantic Division. Brandon Mashinter’s third period goal proved to be the game-winner. Logan Couture added a goal as well to overtake Stephen Zalewski for the team lead in goals with 11. Both teams were held scoreless in the first period of action, despite Worcester controlling much of the play. Lowell earned the only power play of the period when the Sharks’ Danny Groulx was sent off for tripping. However, the Devils did not register a shot and were unable to convert with the man advantage. The Sharks’ best opportunity came on a Benn Ferriero drive from the right circle, but it was blocked aside by Lowell netminder Mike McKenna. Worcester outshot Lowell by a margin of 11-4 in the period. Worcester hopped on the board first just 1:39 into the second period when Couture’s (11th) circus shot from behind the net banked in off McKenna’s pads. Ferriero earned one assist, extending his point streak to four games, and Zalewski picked up the other helper. Devils captain Stephen Gionta was awarded a penalty shot at 7:58, but his attempt went high over the net of Alex Stalock. Andrew Desjardins extended the Sharks lead to 2-0 at 14:23 of the period, beating McKenna off of a rebound. Dan DaSilva and John McCarthy each picked up assists. Lowell answered on the power play at 17:43 of the period. Ben Walter collected a loose puck in front of the net and banged home his 11th of the season. Michael Swift and Matt Halischuk assisted on the goal. The Sharks outshot the Devils, 15-5. The Sharks regained their two-goal lead when Mashinter (8th) knocked home a rebound at 6:58 of the 3rd period to make the score, 3-1. McKenna denied the initial blast from Dennis McCauley, but could not get to the Mashinter shot. Lowell cut the deficit in half 13:50 into the period off an offensive zone face-off. Nick Palmieri (11th) muscled his way in front and beat Stalock. Swift collected the lone assist, his second of the game. The Sharks survived a late flurry from the Devils to take the victory, 3-2. Worcester controlled the shot total in the period, 13-7. With the win, the Sharks move to 18-12-0-2 (38 points) on the season and currently sit in 4th place in the Atlantic Division.

2013 vs St. John’s 5-2 win
(WORSHARKS) Five different goal scorers propelled the Worcester Sharks (13-12-1-1, 28pts) to a 5-2 victory over the St. John’s IceCaps (15-12-1-2, 33pts) in front of 3,698 fans at the DCU Center on Friday evening. Harri Sateri was brilliant with 34 saves in net while Freddie Hamilton, Taylor Doherty, Marek Viedensky, Brodie Reid, and Eriah Hayes scored for the Sharks in the victory. Despite not playing in 11 days, the IceCaps came out buzzing and recorded the first seven shots on goal as rookie J.C. Lipon (5th) jammed home a nice pass from behind the net by Carl Klingberg at 5:18 past Harri Sateri to put St. John’s ahead 1-0. Harri Sateri was sharp in the opening frame making 15 saves as Worcester was outshot 16-10 and trailed 1-0. A slow start to the second period saw the Sharks have two goals waved off for various reasons. Worcester finally broke through in the final five minutes of the middle frame with three goals in a 3:16 spell past goaltender Jussi Olkinoura to grab a 3-1 advantage. Freddie Hamilton (10th) broke through with a 4-on-3 power play goal at 15:25, followed by a blast by Taylor Doherty (2nd) from 50 feet at 15:57 for a 2-1 Sharks advantage. Marek Viedensky (3rd) slammed home a rebound after Curt Gogol’s initial shot was padded away to put Worcester ahead 3-1 through 40 minutes of play. Brodie Reid (3rd) gave Worcester some wiggle room at 11:11 of the third period as he sent a blocked shot into an empty net to put the Sharks ahead 4-1. Goaltender Harri Sateri left after 34 saves with an apparent injury with seven minutes remaining and the IceCaps would get a quick power play goal past Troy Grosenick at 14:06 as Zach Redmond (5th) fired a bullet through traffic and into the net. St. John’s came pressing late but Eriah Hayes (5th) put the game away with an empty net strike at 18:58 to give the Sharks a 5-2 victory. The Sharks overall record improves to 13-12-1-1, 28pts and 6-7-0-1, 13pts at home this season.

2014 at Syracuse 4-2 win
(WORSHARKS) The Worcester Sharks (12-13-3-1, 28pts) have points in three straight games after a big 4-2 win over the Syracuse Crunch (20-8-3-0, 43pts) in front of 5,789 fans at the War Memorial Arena on Saturday evening. Matt Taormina, Willie Coetzee, Evan Trupp, and Jeremy Langlois scored goals for Worcester and Troy Grosenick made 23 saves in net for his 8th win of the season as the Sharks snapped Syracuse’s ten game winning streak. Bryan Lerg added two assists for his third consecutive multipoint game as the Sharks extend their point streak to three games (1-0-1-1). Neither team scored in a fast paced first period that saw the Crunch outshoot the Sharks 7-4. Sharks captain Bryan Lerg had a penalty shot opportunity at 3:07 but his backhand shot went over the cross bar past goaltender Kristers Gudlevskis. Syracuse went 0-for-2 on the power play in the opening twenty minutes with goaltender Troy Grosenick standing tall for Worcester. The Sharks would score twice in the second period to take a 2-0 lead through 40 minutes. Former Crunch defensemen Matt Taormina (4th) fired a one-timer from on top of the right circle on the power play that got through the Crunch netminder at 8:43. Worcester tabbed a 2-0 lead as goaltender Kristers Gudlevskis kicked out a rebound on a shot by Konrad Abeltshauser that came from the left wall and Willie Coetzee (1st) tapped in the loose puck at 17:07. Syracuse held a 17-13 advantage through 40 minutes. Evan Trupp (7th) gave Worcester a 3-0 lead after a great individual effort by Jeremy Langlois at 3:31 of the third period. Syracuse would score the next two as Yanni Gourde (13th) struck on the power play at 9:45 and Dalton Smith (8th) finished off a 2-on-1 at 17:17 to cut the Worcester lead to 3-2. But Jeremy Langlois (8th) finished the Crunch off with an empty net tally at 18:29 as the Sharks picked up the 4-2 road victory. The Sharks overall record improves to 12-13-3-1, 28pts, and 5-8-1-0, 11pts on the road this season.

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