The Worcester Railers opened their post-Christmas schedule with a game against the Adirondack Thunder Friday night at the Cool Insuring Arena in Glens Falls, New York, and despite losing three one-goals leads and then having to comeback from a single goal deficit themselves Worcester ended up with one in the win column as they defeated the Thunder 5-4 in overtime.
Shane Walsh had the first two Worcester goals, both in the opening period. Jack Stander made it 3-2 in the middle frame, but down one late in the third Dante Salituro scored an extra attacker goal to send it to the extra session, where he then scored the game winner.
For the particulars we’ll go old school again, something we’ve done a lot this holiday season, and share the Thunder’s highlight package on YouTube.
The Railers take to the ice again Saturday with a contest against the Maine Mariners at the DCU Center. Puck drop is 7pm.
Scratches for the Railers were Tanner Pond (14-day IR/upper) and Yanick Turcotte (suspended, game one of three). Ian Milosz was the back-up goaltender. Turcotte was suspended by the ECHL right before Christmas for his actions in the team’s last pre-holiday game in Brampton. Turcotte went after Beast defenseman Matt Petgrave after Petgrave took Shane Walsh to the boards behind the Brampton net. Turcotte was given an “aggressor” game misconduct, and subsequently suspended three games.
Kyle Thomas had a more positive reason for missing the game as he was signed to a professional try-out contract (PTO) by the AHL’s San Diego Gulls. Thomas was under contract with the Gulls for the 2017-18 season, scoring a goal and an assist in seven games. Last season Thomas was Utica Comets property, and played six games notching a goal and an assist. Also not dressed for Worcester was defenseman Anthony Florentino, who, according to the Railers, was “suspended by the club in order for him to pursue other opportunities.”
Dante Salituro is the first Worcester player since the 2003-04 season to score an extra attacker goal to tie the game and then score an overtime game winner. Still searching through game notes from earlier dates to see if it’s ever happened before that season. So far it appears that Salituro is the first in Worcester pro hokey history to accomplish the feat, but this looks like it will be Bill Ballou territory so we’ll have to check with him pregame Saturday to see what he says on the matter.
Worcester fans will be looking to see if the ECHL decides to send some supplementary discipline in the direction of Thunder defenseman Gabriel Verpaelst, who came off the Adirondack bench and attacked Railers forward Cody Payne. The original altercation was between Payne and Colby Sissons, and when Verpaelst jumped on the ice Sissons quickly went to the bench. Any pending review of the incident will rely on video the Thunder have of the game, so it won’t be a shock if there isn’t any despite there being many cameras at the arena used to capture the action. Verpaelst was given an instigator minor, so referee Jacob Rekucki should have been aware of the circumstances.
The three stars of the game were
1. WOR – 26 Shane Walsh
2. ADK – 91 Mike Szmatula
3. WOR – 10 Dante Salituro
The 210Sports Player of the Game was Ross Olsson.
Even Strength Lines
Almeida / Dudek / Walsh
Samuels-Thomas / Pierog / Salituro
Olsson / Payne / Callin
Chukarov / Doherty
Stander / McKenzie
Murray / MacKinnon
Worcester 2 1 1 1 – 5
Adirondack 2 0 2 0 – 4
1st Period-1, Worcester, Walsh 8 (Almeida), 4:51. 2, Adirondack, Nazarian 5 (Parran), 11:07. 3, Worcester, Walsh 9 (Samuels-Thomas, Pierog), 12:39 (PP). 4, Adirondack, Linhart 3 (Popugaev, Szmatula), 15:33. Penalties-Henry Adk (high-sticking), 7:47; Murray Wor (fighting – major), 12:32; Carrier Adk (fighting – major), 12:32; Henry Adk (high-sticking – double), 12:32; Payne Wor (fighting – major), 16:40; Verpaelst Adk (instigating, fighting – major), 16:40; Salituro Wor (slashing), 18:46.
2nd Period-5, Worcester, Stander 2 (Olsson), 8:11. Penalties-Samuels-Thomas Wor (tripping), 3:25; McKenzie Wor (slashing), 10:00; Sissons Adk (tripping), 10:36.
3rd Period-6, Adirondack, Tonge 3 (Popugaev), 10:10. 7, Adirondack, Szmatula 12 (Henry, Curti), 14:18 (PP). 8, Worcester, Salituro 6 (Olsson, Pierog), 18:09. Penalties-Payne Wor (boarding), 12:47.
OT Period-9, Worcester, Salituro 7 (Almeida, Murray), 1:53. Penalties-No Penalties
Shots on Goal-Worcester 14-11-5-2-32. Adirondack 12-11-12-0-35.
Power Play Opportunities-Worcester 1 / 5; Adirondack 1 / 4.
Goalies-Worcester, Buitenhuis 6-9-0-0 (35 shots-31 saves). Adirondack, Murdaca 0-0-1-2 (32 shots-27 saves).
Referees-Jacob Rekucki (20).
Linesmen-Matt Brady (86), Chris Provost (50).