Today in Worcester hockey history: January 31

25B

1996 at Providence 4-3 win
The Worcester IceCats needed a last second goal to win in Providence for the first time in franchise history, and they got on from Sergei Kharin for a 4-3 win over the Baby-Bs. Fred Knipscheer opened the scoring with a goal at 7:04 of the first period assisted by Jamie Rivers and Jason Widmer. Ryan Hughes would tie the game for Providence at 18:27 on the power play. Cam Stewart gave the Bruins the lead at 13:05 of the middle stanza while on the power play, but a third period goal by Jarrett Deuling at 2:43 got the ‘Cats back to even. Knipscheer and Alex Vasilevskii had the helpers on the play. Craig Darby then got Worcester the lead with an unassisted goal at 7:46, but the Baby-Bs tied it at 13:55 on a goal by Brendan Flynn. Just as it looked like the game was headed to overtime Kharin scored with nine seconds remaining in regulation for the 4-3 IceCats win. Knipscheer and Rivers had the helpers on the game winning power play goal. Mike Buzak made 26 saves in the win.

1997 vs Fredericton 2-2 tie
The struggling Worcester IceCats finally put together 60 minutes of good hockey, but it wasn’t enough to earn two points in a 2-2 tie with the Canadiens. The ‘Cats got on the board at 3:21 of the opening period when Bob Lachance stole the puck and fed Rob Pearson, who wheeled the net and fired a hard wrist shot from about 10-feet out. Dion Darling then tied it for Fredericton at 4:38. In the second period Chris Kenady scored when Libor Zabransky’s shot was blocked and deflected right to Kenady at the far post at 16:01. Davis Williams had the secondary assist on the power play marker. In the third Harold Hersh tied it 2-2 at 4:37. Mike Buzak earned the point making 24 saves.

1998 vs Springfield 6-2 loss
The IceCats and Falcons exchanged first period goals, but Springfield added two in each of the second and third periods to beat Worcester 6-2. After Tavis Hansen gave the Falcons the lead at 3:49 of the opening period Stephane Roy tied the game at 6:42. Shayne Toporowski and Mike Prokopec had the assist on the goal. Brad Isbister got Springfield their lead back at 7:39, but Bob Lachance tied it again for the IceCats at 17:45. Jamal Mayers had the helper on that tally. But that was all the scoring for Worcester as the Falcons added second period goals from Shane Doan (3:26) and Isbister (16:07), and goals in the third by Isbister (7:27) and Jeff Shevalier (12:40) for the 6-2 final. Sinuhe Wallinheimo had 40 saves for Springfield. Frederic Cassivi had 20 in the loss.

2003 at Bridgeport 4-1 loss
(SOUND TIGERS) The Bridgeport Sound Tigers defeated the Worcester IceCats at home Friday. Raffi Torres, reassigned by the Islanders to Bridgeport along with Eric Godard earlier today, led the Sound Tigers with three goals while Jeff Hamilton and Brandon Smith had two points each, and Goaltender Scott Stirling made 32 saves and notched an assist in his first start for the Sound Tigers. After a scoreless first period, Worcester took a 1-0 lead on a goal by Eric Nickulas just 1:28 into the second period, his 12th goal of the season, assisted by Jason Dawe. Nickulas was assigned to Worcester by the NHL’s St. Louis Blues earlier in the day. Hamilton evened the score at 1-1 with his tenth goal of the year at 14:49 of the middle frame, just two seconds after a power play had expired, assisted by Eric Manlow and Smith. Torres gave the Sound Tigers a 2-1 lead on a power-play goal, his second of the game and tenth of the year, on assists from Smith and Stirling at 17:56. Torres put Bridgeport up 3-1 3:37 into the third period on assists from Hamilton Martin Chabada. He then completed the hat trick tapping a pass from Justin Mapletoft into an empty net for the insurance goal at 19:36. Bridgeport was 1 for 5 on the power play, 4 for 4 on the penalty kill and had a 35-33 shots on goal advantage. Stirling finished the game with 32 saves while Worcester’s Cody Rudkowsky made 31 stops in a losing effort.

2004 vs Manchester 3-3 tie
(ICECATS) Trevor Byrne scored with 15 seconds left in regulation to force overtime, as the IceCats rallied to tie the Manchester Monarchs 3-3 Saturday night in front of over 10-thousand fans at Worcester’s Centrum Centre. The ‘Cats trailed 3-0 entering the final period. Manchester took the lead in the second period on goals by Bryan Muir and a pair from Noah Clarke. Steve Kelly assisted on all three Manchester goals, while Pavel Rosa added two helpers. Worcester’s rally began two minutes into the third period with Terry Virtue scoring to record his 200th point as an IceCat. Later in the third, with under five minutes to play, Brendan Brooks fired a snap-shot past Adam Hauser to get the ‘Cats within a goal. Brooks converted on a perfect feed from Johnny Pohl, and now has three goals in eight games played. Worcester pressured in overtime, directing five shots at the Manchester cage, but settled for point. The tie kept the ‘Cats and Monarchs even in the congested Atlantic Division standings. Both teams are stationed in third place with 52 points. Worcester’s Brent Johnson (eight saves) earned the tie after relieving Curtis Sanford (17 saves) at the start of the third period

2009 vs San Antonio 5-1 win
(WORSHARKS) Coming off of a 3-1 win over Springfield Friday night, the Worcester Sharks squared off against the San Antonio Rampage, who were riding a five game road winning streak. In a game full of scoring opportunities for both teams, it would be a strong three goal first period that would propel the Sharks to a 5-1 win. The opening period began with a pair of penalties as San Antonio received a delay of game penalty at 1:43 and Worcester’s Lukas Kaspar was called for holding at 3:02, but neither power play produced any scoring. The first goal of the game came midway through the period when Worcester’s Jamie McGinn scored his twelfth goal of the season at 9:49, one-timing home a crisp feed from Tom Cavanagh past Rampage goaltender Al Montoya. Jason Demers also notched an assist on the play. Cory Larose then stretched the Sharks’ lead to 2-0 as he recorded his 16th goal of the season at 12:08, assisted by Matt Jones and Brad Staubitz. The goal also extended Larose’s point streak to nine games. As the clock ticked down, Andrew Desjardins just barely beat the buzzer and scored at 19:59, assisted by Brendan Buckley and Staubitz, to give the Sharks a 3-0 lead to end the period. Both teams had scoring opportunities and put pressure on the opposing goaltender throughout the second period until Worcester’s Steven Zalewski scored his 10th goal of the season at 10:47. The shorthanded goal was assisted by Kaspar and gave the Sharks a 4-0 lead. San Antonio finally answered back, taking advantage of a 5-on-3 power play. Wyatt Smith scored at 19:36, with assists from Chad Kolarik and David Spina, but the Rampage still trailed 4-1 after two periods of play. Five minutes into the third period San Antonio threatened with a shot from Kolarik from above the faceoff circle that was deflected and fell end over end by the glove of Worcester netminder Taylor Dakers. After a review the referees disallowed the goal as the puck was deflected with a high stick. The Rampage kept the heat on Worcester but with 1:17 left in the period Larose scored his second goal of the game into an empty net to give the Sharks a 5-1 final score. The win improves Worcester’s record to (26-19-0-2), while dropping San Antonio to (21-29-0-1).

2010 vs Lowell 4-3 OTL
(WORSHARKS) Lowell climbed into a tie for second-place in the Atlantic Division with a 4-3, overtime victory against the Worcester Sharks. Michael Swift’s goal at 1:55 of overtime ended the Sharks five-game winning streak. Benn Ferriero scored twice for the Sharks, but they were unable to come-from-behind in the end. For the second game in a row, a slow start from Worcester prevented them from scoring first. The Devils used a flurry of opening offensive attacks that led to a 1-0 lead at the 2:38 mark. Alexander Vasyunov fed one from the left-wing side boards to the top of the crease and found Stephen Gionta (10), who tipped one past Alex Stalock. Later in the period, Andrew Desjardins’ hard check led to a brawl featuring Desjardins and Matthew Corrente that left both players with fighting majors and Corrente with a 10-minute misconduct penalty. Final shots in the period favored Worcester, 10-9. At 7:48 of the second period, Benn Ferriero was sent to the penalty box for goaltender interference and Lowell capitalized. Tyler Eckford (8) blasted one through a screen and into the back of the net, doubling Lowell’s advantage, 2-0. Ben Walter and Swift each earned assists on the goal. Needing a break, the Sharks turned the Devils over deep inside their own zone and Benn Ferriero (12) sniped one past the blocker of Devils netminder Jeff Frazee at the 10:32 mark. Worcester tied the game 15:58 into the period on the power-play when Danny Groulx (5) rocketed one from the left point and rippled the net. Steven Zalewski and Jamie McGinn picked up the assists. With just 48 seconds left in the period, Gionta’s centering pass deflected off a Sharks stick and was muscled home by Brad Mills (8). The Devils took the 3-2 lead with them into the third period. Shots were even at nine a piece in the period. Ferriero tied the game at 3-3, at the 7:00 minute mark. After Zalewski sent a blind pass to the high slot, Ferriero (13) once again snapped one past the blocker of Frazee. Logan Couture collected the other assist. It would be the only goal of the period and the teams remained deadlocked at, 3-3, into the overtime period. Worcester outshot Lowell, 15-11. Overtime lasted just under two minutes when Walter slid one through his legs from the side of Stalock’s net and was one-timed home by Swift (12) for the game-winner. Lowell had the only two shots in the extra frame.

2011 AHL All-Star game: East 11, West 8 (Giant Center, Hershey, PA)
Justin Braun was “E” and had two shots on goal for the East.

2014 vs Springfield 5-2 win
(WORSHARKS) The Worcester Sharks (21-18-3-1, 46pts) defeated the Springfield Falcons (28-11-1-4, 61pts) 5-2 before 2,685 fans at the DCU Center on Friday evening. Dan DaSilva (2-1-3) and Yanni Gourde (0-3-3) each had three point games in the 5-2 victory over the Falcons as the Sharks extended Springfield’s winless streak to the longest of the season with four straight losses. The Sharks’ three first period goals by Oleksuk, Reid and DaSilva made for the first time Worcester tallied three goals in the first 20 minutes of action this season and Troy Grosenick made 19 saves in his return between the pipes for the Sharks. The Sharks tripled both the shooting and the scoring of the Falcons during the first period with shots 18-6 and a score of 3-1 on the scoreboard. Worcester opened the scoring quickly, just 1:15 into the tilt. Yanni Gourde sent a puck from the lower right corner of the boards out to an open Travis Oleksuk (8th) who then ripped it past the league’s leading goaltender, Mike McKenna. Brodie Reid (5th) was the next Shark to score at 9:57 when he cleaned up a rebound off of McKenna’s right pad after he saved an initial shot from Freddie Hamilton. The Falcons answered back after a turnover resulted in a counter attack down the ice at 14:20. Grosenick made the first save on a shot from Michael Chaput at the left side, but the puck bounced out to Sean Collins (8th) on the right who lifted it over Grosenick as he was still down on the ice. With just over a minute left in the period at 18:42, the Sharks regained their two-goal lead when Dan DaSilva (9th) stuffed another rebounded puck off McKenna’s right pad into the goal. The period served as a milestone for the Sharks, who haven’t scored three goals in the first period all season before tonight and for Nick Petrecki who recorded his 500th penalty minute off an interference call. The Sharks kept their offensive presence strong during the second 20 minutes of play adding two more goals off of 20 shots, while the Falcons only posted eight shots that resulted in one goal. Springfield scored their lone goal of the period first at 7:56 when Alex Aleardi wrapped around the left side of the net and dished the puck to Lukas Sedlak (7th) who one-timed it into the Sharks’ net from the slot. Then at 15:48, Worcester tallied its fourth goal of the night off of a 2-on-1 between DaSilva and Oleksuk (9th), who completed the play after burying DaSilva’s rebounded shot into the net. The Sharks took a three goal lead and their biggest lead of the night at 18:46 when DaSilva picked up a pass from Gourde and rifled it through the Springfield defense and McKenna from the center of the blue line. A scoreless final period of action gave the Sharks a 5-2 victory over Springfield. Shots dropped in the third for Worcester with Springfield holding the 7-2 advantage while a lot of the 20 minutes was played out in the neutral zone. Grosenick remained solid, making seven saves while McKenna made two. The Sharks’ overall record improves to 21-18-3-1, 46pts and 11-9-0-1, 23pts at home.

2015 vs Providence 3-2 win
(WORSHARKS) The Worcester Sharks (23-16-3-2, 51pts) split the home-and-home series with a 3-2 win over the visiting Providence Bruins (22-18-5-1, 50pts) in front of 7,760 fans at the DCU Center on Saturday night during the 4th annual PINK in the RINK night to benefit the Cup Crusaders in support of breast cancer awareness and research. Ryan Carpenter (1-2-3, +3) and Eriah Hayes (1-2-3, +1) both had three-point games, leading the Sharks to victory. The Bruins’ Ryan Spooner (2-0-2) had two goals, which was the only scoring Providence would get for the night. Aaron Dell made 26 saves on 28 shots to get his 2nd win of the year, as Worcester beat Providence for the seventh time this season, giving them their 10th win in the month of January. John McCarthy also scored for Worcester in front of the largest crowd of the season at the DCU Center. The Sharks began the scoring in a physical first period when veteran winger John McCarthy (6th) found the back of the net off a rebound at 3:41. The Bruins answered at 10:01 when Alexander Khokhlachev sent a nice feed to Ryan Spooner (4th), who slapped the puck past Worcester’s netminder Aaron Dell to even the score at one a side. Micheal Haley picked up a fighting major at 7:57 after getting into it with Providence’s Chris Breen at the top of the Bruins’ attacking zone. At the 13:07 mark, a multi-player skirmish in front of the Bruins’ net led to the second score for the Sharks, which was awarded to Eriah Hayes (3rd). Worcester outshot Providence 13-6 and held the 2-1 advantage through twenty minutes. At 6:57 into the second period, Spooner (5th) netted his second game-tying goal of the night with a nifty backhander in tight after a timely feed from Providence center Rob Flick to make it 2-2. Worcester took the lead again when Ryan Carpenter (6th) pushed it past Bruins’ goaltender Niklas Svedberg off a rebound at the 10:11 mark. Dell made 14 stops, and despite the 15-10 shot advantage in favor of Providence during the second period, Worcester had the 3-2 lead going into the second intermission. No goals were scored in a quiet third period. Aaron Dell got his 2nd win of the season, making 26 saves on 28 shots from Providence as the Sharks held on for the 3-2 victory. The Sharks overall record improves to 23-16-3-2, 51pts, and 14-7-2-1, 31pts at the DCU Center this season.

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