Today in Worcester hockey history: March 17


1995 vs Albany 4-3 OTL
The IceCats failed to hold on to two leads and needed a late extra attacker goal to get the game to overtime, but fell to the River Rats 4-3 in extra time. Sean Whyte gave Worcester an early lead with a goal at 7:52 assisted by Jim Nesich and Jason Weinrich. Cale Hulse would then tie the game at 9:54 for Albany. Cal McGowan gave Worcester its second lead of the game with a goal assisted by Blair Atcheynum and Denis Chalifoux at 7:24 off the middle period, but once again the River Rats would tie it on a goal by Mike Vukonich at 8:41. Bryan Helmer gave the River Rats their first lead of the game at 10:47 of the third, but Chalifoux got the game into overtime with an extra attacker power play goal with nine seconds remaining in regulation. Jason Widmer and Shawn Heaphy had the helpers on the play. Rob Conn would score at 4:27 of OT for the 4-3 win for Albany. Wayne Cowley made 28 saves.

1996 vs Rochester 4-3 OTL
The Worcester IceCats came back from a two-goal deficit to force overtime, but then surrendered a five on three power play goal in extra time for the 4-3 loss to the Americans. The Amerks took a quick lead 31 seconds into the contest on a goal by Dane Jackson. Paul Broten, with help from J.J. Daigneault and Jamie Rivers, tied the game on a power play goal at 9:57. In the second period Rochester took a 3-1 lead on a shorthanded goal by Scott Metcalfe at 6:15 and a power play goal by Barrie Moore at 10:53. Fred Knipscheer got the ‘Cats within one at 11:40 of the third period, with assists going to Daigneault and Alex Vasilevskii. Daigneault then scored a power play goal at 15:25, assisted by Rivers and Broten, to send the game to overtime. In the extra session referee Lyle Seitz called Rivers and Terry Virtue for minors in quick succession, with Rivers earning a ten-minute misconduct from the penalty box after the penalty on Virtue was called, and at 3:49 Moore would score the game winner for the Amerks. ‘Cats head coach Jimmy Roberts was given a gross misconduct penalty post game, but was not suspended. Steve Shields made 42 saves for Rochester. Mike Buzak started the game for the IceCats but left due to an injury in the second period. Jamie McLennan got the overtime loss, making 9 saves.

1999 at Portland 4-3 win OT
The Worcester IceCats allowed a tying goal in the final seconds of overtime but got an overtime goal from Andrej Podkonicky to defeat the Pirates 4-3. Podkonicky opened the scoring in the first period at 2:35 when he tipped Jaroslav Obsut’s shot past Portland goalie Martin Brochu. Obsut then scored on the power play at 13:54 with an assist by Rory Fitzpatrick. Daniel Cleary made it 2-1 at 9:05 on the power play, and then Trevor Halverson tied it at 19:32. Jamie Thompson got the ‘Cats lead back unassisted at 1:05 of the third period, but with three seconds left in regulation Halverson scored with an extra attacker. In the extra frame Podkonicky scored at 2:27 when he took a Jochen Hecht feed and beat Brochu. Brent Johnson earned the win.

2000 vs Cincinnati 4-2 win
(TICKER) Jim Campbell scored the go-ahead goal in the second period and Cody Rudkowsky stopped 23 shots as the Worcester IceCats defeated the Cincinnati Mighty Ducks, 4-2. Campbell broke a 2-2 tie with 4:51 to go in the second and Worcester won for only the second time in nine games (2-5-2). Rudkowsky made 15 saves over the final 40 minutes. Jamie Thompson added a goal and an assist for the IceCats, who shut out Cincinnati in their only other meeting on February 4. Shane Hnidy’s goal with 98 seconds left in the opening period gave the Ducks a 2-1 lead. Gregg Naumenko stopped 27 shots but Cincinnati lost for the fourth time in 28 games when leading after one period.

2001 at Lowell 4-2 win
(TICKER) Darren Clark scored the game-winning goal in the third period as the Worcester IceCats defeated the Lowell Lock Monsters, 4-2. Clark netted his sixth marker of the season with 9:33 remaining to give Worcester a 3-1 lead. Pascal Rhueame and Daniel Corso each scored third period power-play goals for the IceCats, who won their fourth straight. Dwayne Roloson stopped 24 shots to pick up the win and improved to 27-13-3. David Hymovitz and Marko Tuomainen tallied for Lowell, which fell to 1-3-2 in its last six contests. Marcel Cousineau suffered the loss after allowing four goals on 25 shots.

2002 vs Manchester 4-1 win
(ICECATS) In the second game of a home-and-home series, the Worcester IceCats skated to a 4-1 victory against the Manchester Monarchs last night at Worcester’s Centrum Centre. The ‘Cats bounced back from a 4-0 loss Saturday night in New Hampshire and are now 4-3 against the Manchester based club. The teams went scoreless for 28:27 before Steve Halko scored an unassisted goal for the ‘Cats. Marc Brown found the back of the Manchester net just 1:24 later. The low wrister was launched from slot with a screen in front of the Manchester cage. With the goal, Brown is now Worcester’s leading active scorer against the Monarchs with six points (four goals, two assists). Trevor Baker, up from the ‘Cats East Coast Hockey League affiliate in Peoria for just his 11th game of the season, put the ‘Cats ahead 3-0. Ed Campbell sprung Baker into the Monarch’s zone shorthanded with a wonderful saucer pass. Baker’s 30-foot blast broke off goaltender Marcel Cousineau and trickled into the net at 16:45 of the middle period. Both of Baker’s goals as an IceCat have come against Cousineau. This one signaled the end of the Manchester netminder’s night, as he was given the hook by Coach Bruce Boudreau. Mike Pudlick scored Manchester’s only goal at 6:04 of the final frame with two Worcester players in the penalty box. The Monarchs called a time-out in the final minutes of regulation and decided to leave Cousineau’s replacement Stephane Fiset on the bench in favor of an extra skater. Mark Rycroft gained control of the puck and shot it into an empty net with just 11.5 seconds remaining to give the ‘Cats the 4-1 final. Baker and Daniel Tkaczuk each registered two points in the game, as both assisted on the final goal. Reinhard Divis turned aside 29 of 30 shots from the Worcester net and was named the game’s number one star. He now leads the AHL with 25 wins. A post game jersey auction raised funds for the Learn to Swim Program at Worcester City Pools. The annual event saw the IceCats hand over their shamrock-trimmed sweaters for a total donation of $12,000.

2004 vs Houston 5-2 win
(ICECATS) After being out shot 15-2 in the first period and down 1-0, the Worcester IceCats responded by scoring five times in the second period. The scoring outburst resulted in a 5-2 win over the Houston Aeros, the reigning AHL Calder Cup champions. Scott Pellerin tied the game just 2:24 into the middle frame. Mike Glumac, Trevor Byrne, Blake Evans and Terry Virtue then responded with goals of their own. The ‘Cats went 3-for-6 on the power play, as Glumac, Evans and Virtue all scored with the man-advantage. Glumac also registered two assists. The rookie forward now has five goals and five assists in his last seven games. Curtis Sanford earned his 14th win of the season with 36 saves. He gave the ‘Cats a chance to win with a stellar first period. Worcester has won two games in a row, and occupies third-place in the Atlantic Division with 74 points. They host a pair of divisional rivals this weekend, Portland on Friday and Lowell on Sunday. The ‘Cats are four points ahead of Lowell, and seven points in front of Portland.

2010 at Albany 5-3 loss
(WORSHARKS) The Worcester Sharks four game win streak came to an end as they fell to the River Rats 5-3 at the Times Union Center in Albany, NY on Wednesday night. Derek Joslin, celebrating his 23rd birthday, extended his point streak to seven games (2-7-9) with a third period assist and Danny Groulx tied a Sharks record with his 11th goal of the season in the 5-3 loss on St. Patrick’s Day. Oscar Osala (18th) gave Albany a 1-0 lead at 5:59 of the first period as he banged in a loose rebound past Sharks netminder Frank Doyle. The opening period was fast moving one with just a single goal and one minor penalty (Groulx for slashing) called. The Sharks trailed 1-0 after the first period of play with each team firing seven shots on goal. The Sharks would tie the score at 1-1 after a blast from on top of the right circle at 7:24 of the middle period by defenseman Jason Demers (3rd). After Nick Petrecki came out of the penalty box, he raced down the right side and left the puck for Andrew Desjardins who then left the puck on top of the right circle to be blasted by Demers. Jerome Samson scored his team leading 33rd goal of the season after the Sharks won a face-off draw outside of their blue line but Samson won the puck and cut right on top of the crease and backhanded the puck past Doyle at 19:28 on the power play. The Sharks trailed 2-1 after forty minutes of play despite outshooting the Rats 21-19. The two teams would pick things up offensively in the third period, but unfortunately for the Sharks, the Rats outscored them 3-2. Cedric McNicoll gave Albany a two goal advantage as he finished off a 2-on-1 break at 12:38. Danny Groulx (11th) scored after a snap shot from the left wall at the blue line found its way through traffic and through the pads of Morrison at 4:15. Drayson Bowman (17th) and Oskar Osala (19th) scored within a two minute span to open the lead to 5-3. Dennis McCauley (9th) scored from the left side after a great feed by T.J. Trevelyan at 15:27 to give the Sharks some hope. Roy Sommer pulled Doyle with 2:30 remaining and the Sharks had a late power play but couldn’t find the back of the net as Morrison stood his ground. Worcester’s record falls to 41-21-2-3 (87 points) and are currently in first place in the Atlantic Division by five points over the Portland Pirates.

2012 at W-B/Scranton 4-1 loss
(WORSHARKS) John McCarthy scored his team leading 16th goal of the season but it was the only Sharks score as Worcester fell 4-1 to the WBS Penguins in front of a sellout crowd of 8,183 at the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza on Saturday Night. Alexandre Picard recorded a hat trick for the Penguins and the Sharks fell out of the top 8 in the Eastern Conference with the loss. The Sharks came out buzzing in the first period, outshooting the Penguins 9-1 in the first six minutes of play. But the Penguins scored on their second shot at 6:28 as defenseman Alexandre Picard (6th) sent a wrist shot through a screen in front and past Tyson Sexsmith to give WBS a 1-0 lead. The Penguins went ahead 2-0 on a power play rebound strike by Ryan Craig (9th) at 8:10. Soon after we had three consecutive fights with James Livingston (3rd FM) dropping the mitts with Brandon DeFazio (6th FM) at 11:17 for round 1. On the ensuing faceoff, Matt Pelech (14th FM) dropped Carl Sneep with a series of punches in the Sharks zone followed by Curt Gogol (17th FM) connecting with a left on Geoff Walker (7th FM) at 11:21. WBS grabbed a 3-0 lead with another power play goal after a terrific one timer bomb by Alexandre Picard (7th) from the right circle through the pads of Sexsmith at 18:38. Harri Sateri replaced Tyson Sexsmith after the score as the Sharks trailed 3-0 after 20 minutes with each team firing 10 shots on goal. The Penguins outshot Worcester 12-8 in the middle frame with neither team finding the back of the net. John McCarthy hit the post early in the period for the best Sharks chance and Tony Lucia (1st FM) picked up his first professional fighting major with Simon Despres at 8:25 after a goal mouth scramble. The Sharks trailed 3-0 after 40 minutes of play. Each team scored in the third period as defenseman Alexandre Picard (8th) recorded a hat trick with a 50 foot shot on the power play at 7:07 to give the Penguins a 4-0 edge. John McCarthy (16th) scored his team leading 16th goal of the season, a power play goal from the top of the crease after a nice feed by Tim Kennedy at 12:32 to cut the WBS lead to 4-1 and ruin the shutout bid for Scott Munroe. Worcester’s record falls to 27-24-4-7, with 65pts and currently in 9th place in the Eastern Conference with 14 games remaining.

2018 vs Fort Wayne 3-2 win
(RAILERS) Matt Lane broke a 2-2 tie early in the third period as the Worcester Railers HC (29-25-4-3, 65pts) defeated the visiting Fort Wayne Komets (42-17-3-1, 88pts) by the score of 3-2 in front of 5,031 fans at the DCU Center on Saturday evening. Matt Lane scored twice and Nick Saracino also found the back of the net for Worcester while Mitch Gillam made 24 saves. Mike Cornell added two assists while Yanick Turcotte picked up his 18th fighting major for the Railers third straight home win. Each team scored in a high tempo first period of play as the Railers led 10-9 in shots through 20 minutes. Dylan Szdlowski (28th) snapped a wicked shot from the right circle past the glove of Mitch Gillam at 7:44. Nick Saracino (10th) tied the score at 1-1 with a rush down the left wing with a snap shot from 30 feet that broke off the glove on goaltender Garrett Bartus and into the net at 17:41. Worcester went ahead 2-1 at 1:40 of the second period as Matt Lane (11th) fired a shot on the power play from on top of the left circle with Woody Hudson providing a screen on top of the crease. Yanick Turcotte (18th FM) dropped Daniel Maggio at 9:47 with an entertaining scrap as the physical play picked up in the middle frame. Fort Wayne tied the score at 2-2 at Marcus Basara (5th) deflected a 50-foot shot from Chris Leonard at 14:10. Each team had 18 shots through 40 minutes of play with the score tied 2-2 through two periods of play. Matt Lane (12th) struck again just 30 seconds into the third period for the eventual game winner as he took a centering feed on the rush from Nick Saracino and ripped it top shelf from ten feet to give Worcester a 3-2 lead. Mitch Gillam made eight more saves in the third period, including a couple from in tight in the final five minutes as the Railers held on for the 3-2 home victory.

2019 vs Manchester 7-4 loss
(RAILERS) The Worcester Railers HC (30-24-5-4, 69pts) tried to erase an early four goal deficit but ran out of steam at the end in a 7-4 loss to the visiting Manchester Monarchs (33-26-2-2,70pts) in front of 3,143 fans at the DCU Center on Sunday afternoon. With the loss, the Railers now trail the 4th place Manchester Monarchs by one point in the North Division with nine games remaining. Ryan MacKinnon, Dylan Willick, Barry Almeida, and David Quenneville (1-1-2) all scored for Worcester while Mitch Gillam made nine saves in net on 13 shots before getting replaced by Blake Wajtala. Nic Pierog scored four goals for Manchester while Charles Williams made 22 saves in net as Worcester fell to 16-10-4-1 on home ice this season. The Railers trailed 4-0 after the first period and trailed 5-1 midway through the second period before getting within a goal early in the third period. Manchester would roar out to a 4-0 lead through 20 minutes of play as Kevin Defour (24th) struck at 1:58, Nic Pierog (28th) on a shorthanded breakaway at 8:28, Matheson Iacopelli (5th) with a bullet from 40 feet at 15:46, and Nic Pierog (29th) again at 16:27 to end the afternoon for goaltender Mitch Gillam. Shots were 14-10 in favor of the Monarchs through 20 minutes. Ryan MacKinnon (6th) would get Worcester on the board with a power play goal on a nice rush down the right-wing side before sliding a low shot through netminder Charles Williams at 5:04. Manchester would regain their four goal lead as Nic Pierog (30th) notched a hat trick at 12:42. But the Railers would counter with a pair of goals in the final six minutes of the middle frame as Matty Gaudreau (11th) slammed home a Josh Holmstrom centering feed at 14:24 and Barry Almeida (22nd) ripped a shot top shelf to end a 3-on-2 rush at 19:27 to cut the Monarchs lead to 5-3. Shots were 22-21 in favor of Manchester through 40 minutes of play. David Quenneville (5th) got the Railers within a goal with a seeing eye shot from the right-wing wall at 3:04 of the third period. Worcester would have several chances to tie the score the rest of the way, but the Monarchs added two empty net goals by Chris Carlisle (3rd) at 19:29 and Nic Pierog (31st) at 19:53 to give Manchester the 7-4 road victory.

2023 at Maine 4-3 win
(RAILERS) In a year that has had a lot of great games, the Railers played their game of the year here Friday night. Down by 2-0 halfway through the match, knowing that the Adirondack Thunder had won their game in Newfoundland earlier, Worcester came back with four straight goals and beat the Maine Mariners, 4-3. It was a remarkable performance with multiple Railers standouts. That list begins with Liam Coughlin, who registered his first career hat trick by scoring on the power play, shorthanded and into an empty net.
Two of his goals were assisted by rookie Adam Goodsir, making his professional debut. Once again, also, Ken Appleby turned in a tremendous effort in net as he made 32 saves.
Jacob Hayhurst had the other Railers goal as he scored shorthanded at 16:50 of the third period. It was just the sixth time in franchise history Worcester had two shorthanded goals in the same game, the first time since Dec. 16, 2019. The result was not only emotionally satisfying for Worcester, it was mathematically satisfying as well. The victory allowed the Railers to cut their magic number for clinching a playoff spot to 18. Worcester played an uninspired first period and it showed on the scoreboard as Maine jumped out to a 2-0 lead. The shots on goal totals were a good indication of how things went as the Mariners had a 14-5 edge. It was, however, a 0-0 game for more than 16 minutes. Maine finally made it 1-0 at 16:35 on Alex-Olivier Voyer’s goal as he popped in a rebound from outside the right post. It was a 2-0 game 61 seconds later as Cam Askew snapped a 25-footer over Appleby’s blocker and under the crossbar. The Railers only tested Brassard once, at 10:09 of the period. He made a diving stop of Goodsir’s rebound shot from close range with Worcester on a power play. Worcester kept the game within reach in the early part of the second period. After that, the Railers dominated play and tied the game at 2-2. The turnaround came with Worcester killing a penalty. At 10:25 Andrei Bakanov got loose for a long breakway that Francois Brassard stopped in close. Shortly thereafter the Railers got a power play of their own and made it a 2-1 game with Coughlin converting a pass from Goodsir right in front. Worcester had more penalty killing time after that including 41 seconds of two-men down. The Railers were still a man down when Coughlin was set up by Goodsir again, this time firing a 15-foot wrist shot home from between the circles. Hayhurst finally put the Railers ahead with his shorthanded goal, then Coughlin hit the empty net at 17:26. Brassard was out of the net when Chase Zieky made it a 4-3 game for Portland at 18:28, but the Railers kept the puck out of the net the rest of the way. The game marked the beginning of the annual roster reboot the Railers adding a pair of players from college hockey, Goodsir and Anthony Callin. Both made their professional debuts Friday night. Callin is a look-alike for his brother Drew, who also began his pro career with the Railers as a late-season college signing in 2019. Anthony, also a forward, arrives in Worcester after a five-year career at Clarkson where he was 34-36-70 with 67 PIM. Goodsir is a forward from Long Island University where he was 15-19-34 with 64 PIM this season. The Callins are the third brother combination in Railers history, sixth in city history. The Railers also had the three Harts — Kevin, Brian and Ted and the Saracino brothers, Nick and Chris. The other brothers are Jim and Ed Campell of the IceCats; Matt and Michael Pelech of the Sharks and Joe and Mike Pereira, also of the Sharks. MAKING TRACKS – The win was Appleby’s 26th for Worcester, moving him past Evan Buitenhuis into second place on the team’s all-time list behind Mitch Gillam. … Worcester was 6 for 6 killing penalties and is 31 for 34 in the last 13 games. …. The Railers are 5-2-0 in their last seven games and have won three in a row for the first time since late January. … Anthony Repaci has a death in the family and returned to Canada for the services. … Hayhurst was back in action after missing three games with an injury … Quin Ryan, Nick Fea, Philip Beaulieu and Zach Bross were not in the lineup. … The weekend tripleheader versus Maine continues with a 7:05 game Saturday night at the DCU Center. … Noah Delmas was back on defense after a stint as a forward. … Appleby’s stop of Gabriel Chicoine’s shot at 3:03 of the third period was 10,000th save in Railers history. … The crowd was a good one at 4,022.


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