Today in Worcester hockey history: January 24

25B

1996 vs Hershey 3-1 win
The Worcester IceCats gave up the first goal of the game, but got the next three in a 3-1 win over the Bears. Scott Morrow scored at 19:29 of the opening period to give Hershey the 1-0 lead. Just 1:44 into the middle period Fred Knipscheer got the ‘Cats even with a shorthanded goal assisted by Ken Sutton. Alex Vasilevskii gave Worcester the lead at 11:23 on the power play as Knipscheer and Sutton picked up assists. Andreas Johansson made it the 3-1 final with a third period goal at 11:35, with Terry Virtue and Lindsay Vallis picking up points. Mike Buzak earned the #1 star of the game making 42 saves.

1997 vs Baltimore 4-3 loss
(BALTIMORE) For the second time in less than a week, the Bandits got third-period heroics and stunned the Worcester IceCats in their own building. Last night, they did it by winning 4-3. They trailed by a goal heading into the final frame, but newcomer Eric Manlow tied the game at 25 seconds, followed 1:26 later by Jamie Spencer’s go-ahead score. Manlow, playing in just his third game with the Bandits, netted his third of the year after picking up a stray puck, then darting down the right wing. He used Worcester defenseman David Williams as a screen, then snapped a quick wrister through the pads of goalie Jamie McLennan. Spencer then drove the rebound of a Trevor Senn drive over McLennan’s right shoulder, quieting the Centrum crowd of 6,692. The Bandits, who have suffered through a number of losing streaks, are now in the midst of a more positive run. They have strung together three straight road wins — currently the longest streak in the AHL — beginning with a 3-2 win here Jan. 18. They are unbeaten in their last four away from the Arena. Worcester’s Chris Kenady opened the scoring with 30 seconds left in the first period. The Bandits answered quickly, tying the game at :48 of the second on Bob Wren’s 10th goal of the year. But the ‘Cats stepped up the pressure and regained the lead at 5: 50 after peppering Bandits goalie Tom Askey with a three-shot flurry. After the Bandits took the lead in the third period, David Sacco added to it with his fifth of the year at 8: 59. Ex-Bandit Mike Maneluk brought Worcester back to within a goal with less than three minutes to play. McLennan was pulled for an extra attacker with just over a minute to play, but the Bandits survived the pressure to hang on for the win.

1998 vs Rochester 3-2 OTL
The Worcester IceCats fired 45 shots on Americans netminder Martin Biron but still managed to lose a two goal lead in dropping a 3-2 contest in overtime to the Amerks. The ‘Cats opened up a 2-0 lead after 40 minutes on a power play goal by Jamal Mayers and and even strength tally by Mike Prokopec. Libor Zabransky and Terry Virtue assisted on both goals. But in the third period Rochester would get goals from Craig Charron and former IceCats center Patrice Tardif to send the game into overtime. Matt Davidson scored on the only shot in the extra session to hand Worcester a 3-2 loss. Frederic Cassivi had 20 saves in the contest.

2001 at Portland 3-2 loss
(TICKER) Mark Murphy scored the game-winning goal late in the third period as the Portland Pirates edged the Worcester IceCats, 3-2. Murphy scored his 18th goal of the season on a power play with 1:51 remaining to break a 2-2 tie. Glen Metropolit finished with a goal and an assist as Portland won for the seventh time in its last nine games (7-2-0). Corey Hirsch stopped 33 shots to pick up the win and improved to 11-3-1. Justin Papineau and Mark Rycroft tallied for Worcester, which fell to 24-13-4, still has the best record in the league. Cody Rudkowsky turned aside 23 shots and suffered the loss to fall to 10-7-2.

2003 vs Chicago 6-1 loss
(ICECATS) The Worcester IceCats were up-ended by the Chicago Wolves 6-1 Friday night at Worcester’s Centrum Centre. The Wolves, the American Hockey League’s defending Calder Cup champions, netted three power play goals and a shorthanded goal en-route to handing the IceCats their most lopsided defeat of the season. On the plus-side, Worcester captain Eric Nickulas scored a shorthanded goal of his own in the third period. Nickulas, who missed the previous three games with an injury, put the ‘Cats within two goals when he scored 2:08 into the final period. Chicago’s Simon Gamache netted a hat trick while veterans Rob Brown and Steve Maltais each collected three assists.

2004 vs Providence 6-2 loss
(ICECATS) For the second night in a row, an early goal-against set the tone for the Worcester IceCats. After allowing a goal 23 seconds into Friday’s game versus Lowell, the Providence Bruins struck Saturday night at 1:21 of the first period en-route to a 6-2 win over the ‘Cats. Andre Savage, who scored the opening goal, led Providence with a goal and three assists. Worcester found themselves down 4-1 after the first, quieting the season’s largest crowd of 10,612. Worcester’s lone first period goal came off the stick of Jay McClement. The IceCats rookie bagged another one in the third period, giving him three goals in his last two games. Also for the second game in row, Worcester coach Don Granato switched goaltenders, pulling starter Curtis Sanford after Providence’s third goal. Sanford (10 saves) was replaced in favor of Cody Rudkowsky, who joined the team on recall from Reading. With the Royals, he was second among ECHL goalies with a 2.14 goals against average. The Bruins got offensive contributions from Zdenek Kutlak (2/1/3), as well as Brendan Walsh, Darren Van Oene and Kevin Dallman (each 1/1/2). Tim Thomas made 35 saves for the win.

2007 vs Houston 3-2 win
(AEROS) Tomas Plihal netted the game-winner with 2:27 left in regulation and Dmitri Patzold made 22 saves, as the Worcester Sharks knocked off the Houston Aeros 3-2 at DCU Center. Brad Staubitz and Mike Iggulden added a goal apiece for Worcester (21-16-1-6), which moved within a point of third-place Providence in the Atlantic Division. Joel Ward tallied Houston’s fourth shorthanded goal in as many games, Matt Foy also scored and Dieter Kochan made 17 stops in his second start of the season. The Aeros (18-21-1-5) play the middle game of their three-game road trip Friday in Manchester. Kochan overskated the puck behind his own net with Worcester on the power play early in the game, but the netminder scrambled back to stop a would-be goal from Sean Collins. Patzold got lucky before the midway point, as Benoit Pouliot’s wide-open 2-on-1 attempt from the right doorstep beat him clean but clanged off the near post. The Sharks took a 1-0 lead on Staubitz’ first goal of the season with 8:04 remaining in the first period. Josh Prudden, in the left circle, hit a cutting Lukas Kaspar. Kaspar slid a left-to-right pass for Staubitz at the right edge of the goal, just seconds after Staubitz was dumped to the ice by an Aeros defenseman. Staubitz got up in time to get one shot off, and after Kochan made the save, he pushed the rebound by the netminder. The Aeros have allowed the game’s first goal in 12 of their last 14 games, including seven straight overall and seven straight on the road. The Sharks, meanwhile, scored first for just the 14th time – fewest in the AHL. Ward evened things up with his fifth of the season – Houston’s fourth shorthanded goal in as many games and fifth in six contests – with 3:18 left in the first. Bryan Lundbohm stole the puck and skated in 2-on-1 with Ward. Faking the shot, Lundbohm hit a cutting Ward in the right circle, and the second-year winger fired the puck into the open net. The goal was just the fourth shorthanded tally allowed by Worcester this season. Kaspar got in alone for Worcester early in the second, but he fired a shot wide of the net. Kochan kept the game tied with a great pokecheck with seven minutes left in the middle period. Aeros sniper Roman Voloshenko found himself between the circles two minutes later with his team on the power play, but he ripped the puck just wide of the net. Iggulden put Worcester back on top 2-1 with 1:57 gone in the second. Kochan stopped Iggulden’s first shot, after a great cross ice pass from defenseman Garrett Stafford. But Iggulden found the rebound and pushed it by Kochan for his 15th goal of the season. Two minutes later, Aeros leading scorer Foy had a breakaway, but Patzold made the save. But Foy exacted some revenge with 12:12 remaining, tying the game at 2-2. Foy came out of the corner and flipped a centering pass across the crease. The puck went by Patzold and into the net off a defenseman’s skate for Foy’s team-best and career-high 17th goal of the season. Fifteen of his previous 16 goals came at Toyota Center, with the other coming at San Antonio’s AT&T Center. Ward helped prevent a goal with less than three minutes left in regulation. Worcester’s leading scorer, Mathieu Darche, picked up a loose rebound in the left circle with an open net to shoot at, but Ward picked Darche’s pocket from behind. But seconds later, Plihal’s fifth of the season decided the game with 2:27 remaining. Collins skated into the right corner, faked a shot and slid the puck to a cutting Plihal, who fired high over Kochan, who had gone down. Houston finished 0-for-3 power play, while Worcester went 0-for-5.

2009 at Lowell 6-4 loss
(WORSHARKS) On a night that Martin Brodeur bobbleheads were given away at the door, the fans at the Tsongas Arena were treated with ten combined goals as the Sharks fell 6-4 in Lowell on Saturday night. It would not take long for Ryan Vesce to extend his franchise record point streak to 13 games with a first period assist on Matt Fornataro’s 5th goal of the season at 8:16. Fornataro found the back of the net from inside the left circle behind Devils’ netminder Jeff Frazee. Lukas Kaspar recorded the other assist. After a tilt by Cory Larose and Michael Swift at 11:26, the Devils would score and tie the game at 1-1 after Patrick Davis broke down the right wing on a 2on1 and beat Thomas Greiss five-hole at 16:40. Worcester outshot Lowell 14-11 in the first period with each team finding the back of the net once. The two teams would combine for six goals in the middle period with the Devils striking four times. Devils Captain Rod Pelly scored three goals in under twelve minutes in a high scoring 2nd period. Jamie McGinn (11th) and Corey Larose (15th) connected for the Sharks with nice deflections in front after shots from Patrick Traverse and Brenan Buckley. Mark Fraser would score the final goal of the period with just :17 seconds remaining with a blast from the right point. The Devils outshot Worcester 20-11 in the 2nd period and had a 31-23 advantage after forty minutes and the Sharks trailed 5-3. The Sharks would pour on the pressure in the third period but Jeff Frazee stood his ground in net and the Devils would extend there lead at 17:36 of the third period with his 8th strike of the season. Patrick Traverse would get the Sharks back within two with his 5th goal of the season and his third in four games. Worcester would fire 17 shots in the third period but the Devils held on for the 6-4 victory.

2014 at Manchester 2-1 loss
(WORSHARKS) The Worcester Sharks (19-16-3-1, 42pts) had their season long point streak snapped at six games and concluded their four game road trip with a 2-1 loss to the Manchester Monarchs (27-12-2-4, 60pts) in front of 4,507 fans at the Verizon Wireless Arena on Friday evening. Matt Tennyson scored a power play goal in the third period while Harri Sateri was solid in goal with 25 saves as the Sharks six game point streak came to an end. Brian O’Neill and Zach O’Brien each scored for Manchester while JF Berube made 32 saves in net for the victory for the Monarchs.
Manchester controlled the first period by outshooting Worcester 10-5 and hitting three posts, but only found the back of the net once. Brian O’Neill (10th) tapped home a cross the crease pass from Nick Shore at 14:36 past goaltender Harri Sateri to give the Monarchs a 1-0 advantage. J.F. Berube made five first period saves for the Manchester which included a point blank try by Yanni Gourde midway through the period. Worcester outshot Manchester 15-9 in the middle period but neither team found the back of the nest as the Sharks headed into the second intermission trailing 1-0. The Monarchs went ahead 2-0 at 6:20 of the third period after a Sharks turnover in the Monarchs’ zone led Manchester the other way offensively. Zach O’Brien (4th) ripped a shot from 40 feet down the right wing that found its way through a screen and through Sateri. The Sharks would answer back at 11:46 as Matt Tennyson (4th) blasted a power play goal from the left point past JF Berube to cut the Monarchs lead to 2-1. Worcester outshot Manchester 13-6 in the third period but could only muster the single score in the 2-1 loss. The Sharks overall record falls to 19-16-30-1, 42pts and 10-9-3-0, 23pts on the road.

2015 at Albany 2-1 win OT
(WORSHARKS) The Worcester Sharks (22-15-3-2, 49pts) closed out the unofficial first half of the AHL season with a hard fought 2-1 overtime victory over the Albany Devils (20-14-4-5, 49pts) in front of 7,012 fans at the Times Union Center on Saturday afternoon. Gus Young scored his first professional goal late in the second period while Tomas Hertl set up defenseman Dylan Demelo at 4:04 of sudden overtime for the victory. JP Anderson made 20 saves in net in his 4th straight start and Barclay Goodrow picked up his first professional fighting major for the Sharks as Worcester has won nine of their last ten games. The tone was set during warmups after all 40 skaters came together at center ice before the opening faceoff. Worcester outshot the Devils 16-7 in the first period but AHL rookie netminder Scott Wedgewood stood tall between the pipes for the Devils. Worcester finally got on the board with 59 seconds remaining in the second period on the Sharks 29th shot on goal. Rookie Gus Young fired a quick shot from the blue line along the left wall that deflected off a Devils stick in front and then past the Devils netminder. The Sharks took a 1-0 lead into the second intermission and held a 29-12 shot advantage through two periods. A very physical third period featured several big checks and the first professional fighting major from Barclay Goodrow as he dropped the mitts with Dan Kelly midway through the period. Albany finally scored on their 6th power play after a shot from the point hit several skaters in front of the Worcester crease and Paul Thompson (22nd) fired a quick shot past the short side past JP Anderson at 15:51 to force overtime. After a nice defensive play by Taylor Fedun in the Worcester zone, Tomas Hertl raced down the left wing and carried the puck behind the net and sent a wraparound pass to a charging Dylan Demelo (4th) for the winning score at 4:04 of overtime. The Sharks overall record improves to 22-15-3-2, 49pts, and 9-8-2-2, 22pts on the road this season.

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