Today in Worcester hockey history: February 17


1995 at Cape Breton 7-5 win
Worcester IceCats netminder Chris Gordon may have allowed five goals, but he made 45 saves and that was good enough to help lead the ‘Cats to a 7-5 win over the Oilers. IceCats goal scorers were Blair Atcheynum (unknown time, 2nd), Denis Chalifoux (unknown time, 2nd), Jarrett Deuling (5:19, 1st), Shawn Heaphy (19:31, 2nd), Cal McGowan (17:44, 1st), Mark Ouimet (16:04, 3rd), and Sean Whyte (5:49, 1st).

1997 vs Portland 1-0 win
The Worcester IceCats got 29 saves from Jamie McLennan and the only goal of the game from Marquis Mathieu to defeat the Pirates 1-0. Neither team scored in the opening two periods, and Mathieu would get the game winner 22 seconds into the third period when Mike Maneluk found him all lone in front. Mathieu tipped the puck under a sliding Martin Brochu for the score. Rob Pearson had the secondary assist.

1998 vs Portland 4-2 loss
The Worcester IceCats gave up the first three goals of their game against the Pirates and never recovered in a 4-2 loss to Portland. Ryan Mulhern had the only goal in the opening 20 minutes. Portland would score twice more in the middle stanza, from Benoit Gratton at 4:45 and Mulhern at 7:29, before Jason Zent would get the ‘Cats on the board at 15:56. Nick Naumenko and Chris Kenady would have the assists. In the third period Jan Benda scored at 7:26 for the Pirates. Rory Fitzpatrick added a power play goal, from Bob Lachance and Terry Hollinger, at 15:23 for the 4-2 final. Frederic Cassivi made 22 saves for Worcester.

1999 vs Lowell 5-1 win
The Worcester IceCats scored two first period goals and never looked back in a 5-1 win over the Lock Monsters. Lubos Bartecko opened the scoring with a power play goal at 13:34 of the opening stanza, with assists going to Andrej Podkonicky and Dan Corso. At 14:17 Tyler Willis made it 2-0 with helpers from Derek Bekar and Stephane Roy. In the second period Roy made it 3-0 at 2:40, with Bartecko and Willis picking up assists. Tyson Nash added a goal at 7:55, with Jochen Hecht geting an assist. In the third period J.F. Boutin scored his only IceCats goal to make it 5-0, with Hecht and Nash picking up points. At 15:53 Nic Beaudoin spoiled Dan Murphy’s shutout bid, and the game would end 5-1. Murphy finished the game with 26 saves.

2001 at Hartford 5-2 win
(MIDDLETOWN) The Wolf Pack, hemorrhaging at 1-6-1 since Jan. 30 and garnering just four wins over their last 16 games, were no match for the fleet-skating IceCats on Saturday night. Worcester’s 5-2 victory over Hartford before a crowd of 8,327 at the Veterans Civic Center Coliseum dropped the Pack 15 points in arrears ofthe IceCats who possess the best record (35-16-4, 76 points) in the AHL. “Good depth, great goaltending and good players,” Hartford coach John Paddock said. “It’s a credit to them how they have to play all year with all the roster changes.” Unable to solve goalie Dwayne Roloson (22-8-2, 2.02) who stopped Hartford’s first 20 shots before Brad “Shooter” Smyth scored his league-leading 36th tally with 1:40 left in the second period, the Wolf Pack fell behind 4-0 by sloppy defensive play. “A couple of bad reads and our defense was a half-step behind,” Paddock said regarding Worcester first two goals. “And Marty Reasoner can pass the puck.” Reasoner, who scored Worcester’s fifth goal, assisted on strikes by Dale Clarke and Eric Boguniecki with dynamite cross-ice passes to spring the Icecats into the lead. Clarke, at 18:36 of the first period, and Boguniecki, at 5:35 of the second, finished plays at the right post. Both times, Hartford players got caught up ice and Worcester cashed in on odd-man rushes. Didier Tremblay and Ed Campbell also tallied the Worcester goals. While Tremblay and Reasoner scored during 5-on-3 power plays, Campbell, a former Wolf Pack defenseman, connected when his low shot from the left point trickled through Vitali Yeremeyev (29 saves) who may have been screened. Besides Smyth, captain Ken Gernander had the other goal for the Wolf Pack. Gernander’s goal came with 4:18 to play. So while the Wolf Pack try to relocate their game, the IceCats, a torrid 10-4-1 since the All-Star break, find themselves with the best numbers in the league. Through it all, the players have played through roster recalls while the organization made a great personnel move to sign Boguniecki, a West Haven native, who is 13-16-29 in 24 games since coming over from Louisville. “We have never got flustered or allowed ourselves to think we were victims,” Worcester coach Don Granato said about his changing cast. “Some teams can self-destruct in those situations.” NOTES: Roloson’s 22 wins are tops among league netminders. He finished with 29 saves… Worcester is now 6-3 versus the Pack. The teams do not play again until April 8…The Pack drops to 16-15-1 versus New England teams. Worcester is a robust 19-13-1 against divisional foes.

2002 vs Portland 3-2 loss
The Worcester IceCats allowed two power play goals to the Pirates and that was the difference in a 3-2 loss to Portland. Patrick Boileau got the Pirates on the board first at 8:58 of the opening period, but Jame Pollock would tie it at 17:30 to make it 1-1 after twenty minutes. Arvid Rekis had the only assist on the play. In the second period the ‘Cats would surrender two power play goals to Portland, with Trent Whitfield scoring four on three at 5:32 and Peter Ferraro connecting five on four at 11:46. Eric Boguniecki scored at 8:35 of the third period, also assisted by Rekis, to make it 3-2 but that was as close as Worcester would get. The two assists in the game were Rekis’ final points in the AHL. Curtis Sanford made 15 saves in the loss.

2004 at Bridgeport 2-0 loss
(SOUND TIGERS) The Bridgeport Sound Tigers blanked the Worcester IceCats 2-0 at home Tuesday. Goaltender Dieter Kochan made 21 saves for his fourth shutout of the season, and Ryan Kraft did all of the scoring. For the third time in as many home games, the Sound Tigers played scoreless hockey into the third period and re-set the season mark for the latest first goal in a contest involving them when Kraft one-timed a beautiful pass from Brandon Smith for his tenth goal of the year, a shorthanded marker, with only 7:09 left in regulation. Worcester pulled Netminder Jake Moreland in favor of an extra attacker with just under three minutes to play, turning its seventh power play into a six-on-four advantage, but were unable to tie the game. In fact, Kraft iced the win with exactly 11 seconds left in the contest taking a nice feed from Martin Kariya, who was returning to the lineup after missing eight games with an injured thumb, and shooting it into the empty net for his 11th goal of the season. Collins also assisted on the final tally. Kraft was the first star; Kochan was the second; and Moreland, who joined the IceCats from the ECHL’s Atlantic City Boardwalk Bullies by signing a professional tryout contract just before the game, was the third with 17 saves. The Sound Tigers were 0 for 6 on the power play while Worcester was 0 for 7 and had a 21-19 shots on goal advantage.

2007 at Springfield 2-1 win
The Worcester Sharks didn’t score often in their Saturday night contest against the Falcons, but it was often enough to win 2-1. Doug O’Brien gave Springfield the lead 4:37 into the first period, but Grant Stevenson tied it at 13:52 when he deflected a shot from the point by Brennan Evans. Josh Prudden had the secondary assist. Steve Bernier got the game winner at 2:43 of the second frame when he put the rebound of Riley Armstrong’s shot into the net. Brad Staubitz had the second helper. Thomas Greiss made 20 saves in the contest.

2013 at Providence 3-1 loss
(WORSHARKS) The Worcester Sharks (23-20-1-5, 52pts) finished off their season long five game road trip with a 3-1 loss to the Atlantic Division leading Providence Bruins (30-17-0-3, 63pts) on Sunday afternoon in front of 11,153 fans at the Dunkin Donuts Center. Alex Stalock made 27 saves in his second straight start and Yanni Gourde broke a 22 game goalless drought with a late third period goal for the Sharks in the loss. The Bruins took a 1-0 lead with a great one timer shot from Jordan Caron (8th) from the right slot past goaltender Alex Stalock at 9:31 on the power play. The Sharks were outshot 14-9 in the first 20 minutes of play and trailed 1-0 headed into the first intermission. Providence struck again on the power play as Craig Cunningham (14th) knocked home a loose puck during a scramble in front of the Worcester net at 16:15 to give the Bruins a 2-0 lead in the middle frame. Worcester fired 12 shots on goal in the second but could not solve netminder Michael Hutchinson. In the third period, Yanni Gourde (7th) slammed home a loose rebound past Michael Hutchinson with 2:49 remaining to give the Sharks some life late in the game. But Bruins captain Trent Whitfield sealed the deal with an empty netter as the Bruins won their 4th straight game and 10th game in their last eleven. The Sharks overall record falls to 23-20-1-5 (52pts in 49gp) and 15-11-0-2 (30pts in 28gp) on the road this season.

2018 at Orlando 2-1 SOL
(RAILERS) The Worcester Railers HC (22-21-4-3, 51pts) closed out a three game in three day set in Orlando with a 2-1 shootout loss to the host Orlando Solar Bears (23-24-5-1, 52pts) in front of 7,637 fans at the Amway Center on Saturday evening. TJ Syner scored his 5th goal of the season in the first period while Mitch Gillam made 22 saves in net but JJ Piccinich scored in the 4th round of the shootout as the Railers fell to 1-1-0-1 on their season long seven game road trip. Worcester played a superb road first period of play as they outshot Orlando 10-4 but the score was tied 1-1 through 20 minutes of play. TJ Syner (5th) finished off a great 3-on-1 rush after great passing by Tommy Kelley and Matt Lane at 9:18 to give Worcester a 1-0 lead. Orlando would tie the score at 19:54 as Mike Monfredo (4th) sent home a cross ice pass by Mitch Gillam from in tight. Monfredo then taunted the Railers goalie and then the Railers bench as things got feisty at the end of the period. Neither team found the back of the net in the second period as Mitch Gillam and Mackenzie Skapski each had 11 saves in net but each team hit the post. The score remained 1-1 through 40 minutes with the Railers holding the shot advantage 21-15. Neither team scored in the third period or the five-minute overtime frame as Worcester outshot Orlando 12-8 in the final 25 minutes. The Railers had a power play in overtime but were unable to convert on the man advantage. In the shootout, Tommy Kelley was the only Railer to score while Joshua Winquist and JJ Piccinich found the back of the net for the Solar Bears as Orlando took home the two points with a 2-1 shootout win.

2019 at Tulsa 6-3 loss
(RAILERS) The Worcester Railers HC (23-21-5-3, 54pts) continued their season long seven-game road trip with a 6-3 loss to the host Tulsa Oilers (30-18-4-2,66pts) in front of 5,145 fans at the BOK Center on Sunday afternoon. With the loss, the Railers remain two points behind the Manchester Monarchs for the 4th and final playoff spot in the North Division. Ryan MacKinnon, Barry Almeida (1-1-2), and Ivan Kosorenkov (1-1-2) scored for Worcester while Mitch Gillam allowed five goals on 10 shots through 13:53 before getting pulled for Evan Buitenhuis as the Railers fell to 2-1-1-0 on their seven-game road trip. Tyler Barnes extended his point streak to a franchise record 13 games (11-6-17) with an assist as Worcester recorded a season high 51 penalty minutes. Adam Pleskach (1-2-3) and Tommy Mele (2-0-2) led the Oilers offensively while emergency goaltender Ian Keserich made 17 saves in net for the win. Worcester came out with a good charge as Ryan MacKinnon (5th) fired a bomb from the center point through a screen at 3:15 to give the Railers an early 1-0 lead. Tulsa would then score five straight goals on 10 shots on netminder Mitch Gillam. Kyle Rhodes (11th) tied the score at 4:00 and Tommy Mele put Tulsa ahead 2-1 at 4:28. Jared Thomas (17th) struck at 6:50 followed by Tommy Mele (4th) again at 7:02. Mitch Gillam’s night would come to an end at 13:53 after Adam Phillips fired one from 50 feet to give the Oilers a 5-1 advantage. Ryan MacKinnon (1st FM) and Yanick Turcotte (11th FM) each picked up fighting major penalties in a frustrating first period of play as the Oilers outshot the Railers 16-8 through 20 minutes of play. Things got nasty in the second period with 16 total penalties called and a pair of game misconducts to Nick Sorkin and Mike Cornell during two separate incidents. Adam Pleskach (27th) scored his ECHL leading 27th goal on the power play just 33 seconds into the second period while Barry Almeida (15th) scored on a breakaway at 6:50 to make it 6-2 Oilers. Shots were 32-15 Tulsa through 40 minutes of play. Ivan Kosorenkov (9th) scored the only goal of the third period at 10:31 with Tyler Barnes and Ryan Hitchcock picking up assists on the power play tally. Shots were 9-5 in favor of Tulsa in the final frame as the Railers dropped the road game 6-3.

2023 at Norfolk 5-3 win
(RAILERS) The Worcester Railers HC (25-21-3-0 53 points) won the first of their two games against the Norfolk Admirals on the weekend in front of 3,951 fans at Norfolk Scope Arena. The Worcester Railers close out their season series vs Norfolk tomorrow night at 6:05 p.m. Worcester scored first in this contest. Anthony Repaci (1-2-3) found Quinn Ryan (1-0-1) in the slot for the first goal of the game. Anthony Repaci scored the second goal for Worcester on a breakaway after a nice outlet pass from Brent Beaudoin (0-2-2). Jake Pappalardo (1-0-1) scored his first goal as a Railer giving them a three-goal lead. Connor McCarthy’s (1-0-1) slap shot soared into the back of the net for the Railers fourth goal. Todd Burgess (1-0-1) got the Admirals on the board shortly after McCarthy’s goal. Andrei Bakanov (1-1-2) scored a shorthanded goal late in the third to put Worcester back up by four. The Admirals scored back-to-back goals, the first scored by Tanner Schachle (1-0-1) and the second by Griffin Lunn (1-0-1) to give the game its final score of 5-3. Midway through the first period Norfolk put the puck in the back of the net but after review they waved it off. The officials decided that Railers goalie, Brent Moran, was interfered with taking the goal away from the Admirals and keeping the game scoreless. Anthony Repaci kept his now nine-game point streak going in this game as he found Quinn Ryan (13th) open in the slot for the first goal of the game. Shots in favor of the Admirals 13-11 at the end of the first. It didn’t take long for Worcester to score in the second period. Anthony Repaci (14th) beat Admirals goalie, Tomas Vomacka, on a breakaway thanks to a nice pass from Brent Beaudoin in the neutral zone. The Railers scored again on another breakaway later in the period. This time it was Jake Pappalardo (1st), scoring his first goal as a Railer. Billy Jerry was credited with the assist. That was the end of Vomacka’s night, Norfolk sent out Cale Morris in his place. Andrei Bakanov took a huge open ice hit in the middle stanza but came back into the game. Railers were up 3-0 at the end of forty minutes. The third period had a short delay as Brent Moran had an issue with the ice by his goal. Last time the Railers were in Norfolk there was an hour delay due to an issue with the glycol line. Luckily no drills were brought out and the period started relativel on-time. Three minutes into the final period of play, Connor McCarthy (2nd) loaded up his cannon and fired one past Morris for the Railers fourth goal of the game and McCarthy’s first goal since November. The Admirals got on the board for the first time Friday night after Todd Burgess’s (6th) shot went past Moran. Worcester found themselves in the attacking end on the penalty kill and Andrei Bakanov (2nd) took a shot that set off the lamp for Worcester’s sixth shorthanded goal of the season. The Admirals scored back-to-back goals within forty-seven seconds of each other. The first scored by Tanner Schachle (6th) which was elevated along the goal line off of his backhand to beat the shoulder of Moran. The second was scored by Griffin Lunn (8th), making it a two-goal game. The Admirals pulled Morris with two minutes left to play but failed to score, as the game came to a close with Worcester on top 5-3. Notes: 3rd star: Quinn Ryan (1-0-1). 2nd star: Connor McCarthy (1-0-1). 1st star: Anthony Repaci (1-1-2). Brent Moran had 33 saves on 36 shots. Cale Morris led the Admirals in saves with 15 on 17 shots, while Tomas Vomacka made 13 saves on 16 shots faced. Anthony Repaci, Bobby Butler, Connor McCarthy all led the team in shots with four. Darren McCormick led the Admirals in shots with 6. Worcester moves to 25-21-3-0 on the season.


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