Railers spring ahead, beat Maine 4-3

The Worcester Railers had a rare Saturday night off before their “spring ahead” Sunday contest against the Maine Mariners Sunday afternoon at the DCU Center, and those rested legs proved the difference in a 4-3 win over their ECHL North Division rivals.

Pretty much every game right now is a “must-win” one as the Railers look to put some distance between themselves and the fifth-place Adirondack Thunder, and they got off to a good start when fourth-line winger Chris Ordoobadi put back a Josh Victor rebound to give Worcester the 1-0 lead. Billy Jerry isn’t listed as getting an assist on the play, but he probably should get one.

An opponent scoring right after the Railers scored has become far too commonplace this season, and it happened again when Marc-Olivier Duquette beat Henrik Tikkanen just 47 seconds later to make it 1-1.

Anthony Repaci gave his team its lead back with a nice tip of a Jared Brandt slapshot from the point.

Another thing that’s happened too many times this season is allowing a goal in the last minute of a period, and Chase Zieky scored with 26.7 left in the opening frame for his first of two goals in the game when the Railers’ defense got caught running around in their own zone. Zieky’s second of the contest came at 5:09 of the middle period frame to make it 3-2 Mariners.

Now it was Brent Beaudoin’s turn to score two goals in a row, the first at 15:14 of the second tied the game 3-3.

Beaudoin’s second of the night, and the eventual game-winner, came at 16:15 of the third period on the power play.

Never trust this writer’s math, but with the win Worcester’s magic number over Adirondack to clinch a playoff spot drops to 22.

The Railers and Maine will face off three times next weekend, with Saturday’s contest at the DCU Center bookended by games in Portland.

Scratches for the Railers were Zack Bross (IR/unknown), Christain Evers (IR/unknown), Jacob Hayhurst (day-to-day), Jack Quinlivan (IR/unknown), and Quin Ryan. Ken Appleby was the backup goaltender.

Bob Deraney joined Jordan Smotherman and Jimmy Sharrow behind the Railers bench again Sunday. He’s done it so often that there’s not much more to say about it other than he did it again. So, well, he did it again.

There was one video review in the game, which took place at 1:32 of the middle period when a Railers turnover in the offensive zone resulted in a Mitchell Fossier breakaway. His backhander beat Henrik Tikkanen and looked to sneak just under the crossbar as the red light went on and referee John Lindner signaled a good goal, but Lindner also quickly signaled he was going to review it. Everyone along this writer’s perch thought it was in. Turns out it hit the crossbar, and referee Linder needed just a handful of seconds to change his call.

There was another that probably should have been reviewed when Tim Doherty tried to jam a centering feed under Tikkanen’s legs. It looked like Tikkanen was able to get his left leg on the puck but then slid his leg into the net, which would be a Mariners goal. With referee Linder racing to the net to get a better view of it the puck squirted out of the wild scrum of players and went into the slot. A few moments later Tikkanen made a nice save, which is posted below and this writer was waiting for the previous play to be reviewed. It never was, and no one wearing a Maine jersey seemed concerned about that. My guess is they should have been.

For the post on Saturday’s game, we showed a Holy Cross overtime game-winner because it was obviously worthy of inclusion. There’s a different highlight we’ll include for this posting. During last season’s Calder Cup playoffs, Joel Hofer scored the first–and only–goalie goal I ever saw scored live. There is no doubt he’s going to eventually score another one.

The three stars of the game were
1. WOR – 12 Brent Beaudoin
2. WOR – 20 Chris Ordoobadi
3. MNE – 29 Chase Zieky

The 210Sports Player of the Game was Phil Beaulieu.

Even Strength Lines
Repaci / Beaudoin / Delmas
Fea / Johnson / Butler
Vesey / Coughlin / Bakanaov
Jerry / X / Ordoobadi

Brandt / McGurty
Cosgrove / Beaulieu
Victor McCarthy

Our affiliates last night
Vegas @ St. Louis; late

In the ECHL’s North Division
Adirondack 5, Trois-Rivieres 2
Newfoundland 5, Reading 4 (OT)

North Division Standings
Team points (points percentage) games in hand vs Worcester
Newfoundland 80 (.690) 1
Reading 70 (.614) 2
Maine 67 (.598) 3
Worcester 63 (.534)
Adirondack 54 (.474) 2
Trois-Rivieres 46 (.397) 1
Norfolk 34 (.293) 1

Maine 2 1 0 – 3
Worcester 2 1 1 – 4

1st Period-1, Worcester, Ordoobadi 4 (Victor), 9:12. 2, Maine, Duquette 2 (Stefanson), 9:59. 3, Worcester, Repaci 20 (Brandt, McGurty), 15:31. 4, Maine, Zieky 11 (Fossier, Chicoine), 19:34. Penalties-No Penalties

2nd Period-5, Maine, Zieky 12 (Duquette, Stefanson), 5:09. 6, Worcester, Beaudoin 17 (Beaulieu), 15:14. Penalties-Stefanson Mne (tripping), 2:20; Doherty Mne (slashing), 7:25; Ordoobadi Wor (slashing), 7:25.

3rd Period-7, Worcester, Beaudoin 18 (Delmas, Beaulieu), 16:15 (PP). Penalties-Chicoine Mne (roughing), 6:35; McGurty Wor (roughing), 6:35; Vesey Wor (interference), 6:35; Zieky Mne (hooking), 15:23; Brandt Wor (holding), 17:56; Askew Mne (misconduct), 18:31.

Shots on Goal-Maine 9-8-11-28. Worcester 12-7-5-24.
Power Play Opportunities-Maine 0 / 2; Worcester 1 / 2.
Goalies-Maine, DiPietro 13-7-0-0 (24 shots-20 saves). Worcester, Tikkanen 16-14-2-0 (28 shots-25 saves).
Referees-Marc-Olivier Phaneuf (23), John Lindner (6).
Linesmen-Nathan Frechette (49), Matthew Heinen (93).

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