Railers choke away more points, lose 5-4 in OT to Lions

The Worcester Railers took on the Trois-Rivieres Lions Wednesday night at the DCU Center in what was as close to a “must-win” game as one can be without it actually being one, and threw away a third-period lead and then gave up a soft goal in a 5-4 overtime loss.

For the fifth game in a row, Worcester’s opponent scored first. This time it was thanks to some bullfighter defense from Phil Beaulieu and newcomer Artem Kulakov doing, well, whatever the heck that was at 7:30 of the opening period.

Kulakov redeemed himself about 90 seconds later when his first professional shot went in. He joins Bo Brauer and Anothy Callin as the third Railers player to score on his first shot with the team after being a mid-season addition.

That same defensive pairing once again was on the ice when the Lions scored their second goal at 18:55.

The 21 shots allowed tie the Railers franchise mark for a home first-period.

Just as they did in the first period, Worcester put up 12 shots in the second frame. But this time, instead of allowing 21, they held the Lions to just six as the Railers controlled play for most of the period.

Worcester’s first power play straddled the first intermission and didn’t look very good. Their second attempt came almost immediately after, and it was Steve Jandric who connected to tie the game 2-2

Jandric’s power play goal is the Railers’ 45th on the season, tying the team franchise single-season mark.

With just over three minutes left in the middle stanza, Anthony Repaci gave his team its first lead in four games.

With a secondary assist on the play, Brent Beaudoin hit the 50-point mark on the season.

Entering the third period the Railers were the only ECHL team to not lose entering the frame with the lead. They ended the frame needing a desperation extra attacker goal to get to overtime.

It was Anthony Beauregard who tied the game for Trois-Rivieres when he got position on Noah Delmas and the Worcester defenseman’s stick check essentially did nothing.

Less than 90 seconds later Nicolas Guay scored his second of the game when the Railers made no attempt to clear the Lions players from the front of the net.

With time winding down Henrik Tikkanen was pulled for an extra attacker, and captain Bobby Butler got his squad to overtime with five seconds left in regulation.

A listless Railers power play was a sign of things to come as they managed just a single shot on goal.

That perfect third-period record went by the wayside at 4:49 of the extra session when Tikkanen didn’t get enough of Ryan Francis’ shot as it slowly rolled into the net behind Tikkanen.

Amazingly, Worcester still controls its own playoff destiny. Both games against Adirondack this upcoming weekend now sit firmly in the “must-win” column, and the Railers really need both to be in regulation.

Scratches for the Railers were Conor Breen, Christain Evers (IR/unknown), Billy Jerry, Max Johnson (IR/unknown), Chris Ordoobadi (IR/upper body), Jack Quinlivan (IR/unknown), Quin Ryan (IR/unknown), and Josh Victor (upper body). Ken Appleby was the backup goaltender. With Ordoobadi out of the lineup, general manager Jordan Smotherman signed defenseman Artyom Kulakov, most recently from the OHL’s Erie Otters.

The three stars of the game were:
1. TR – 44 Ryan Francis
2. TR – 91 Nicolas Guay
3. WOR – 8 Bobby Butler

The 210Sports Player of the Game was Steve Jandric.

Even Strength Lines
Bakanov / Beaudoin / Repaci
Hayhurst / Newkirk / Butler
Jandric/ Coughlin / Callin
Goodsir / X / Vesey

McCarthy / McGurty
Brandt / Delmas
Beaulieu / Kulakov

1st Period-1, Trois-Rivières, Guay 9 (Phelan, Zuhlsdorf), 7:30. 2, Worcester, Kulakov 1 (Callin), 8:52. 3, Trois-Rivières, Barron 7 (Lariviere, Guay), 18:55. Penalties-Phelan Tr (slashing), 19:48.

2nd Period-4, Worcester, Jandric 7 (Delmas, Vesey), 3:42 (PP). 5, Worcester, Repaci 21 (Bakanov, Beaudoin), 16:58. Penalties-Lemay Tr (hooking), 1:52; Lacroix Tr (interference), 6:44; Phelan Tr (double – roughing), 18:37; Beaulieu Wor (interference, roughing), 18:37.

3rd Period-6, Trois-Rivières, Beauregard 23 (Kaiser, Johnson), 14:42. 7, Trois-Rivières, Guay 10 (Komuls, Lariviere), 16:09. 8, Worcester, Butler 17 (Hayhurst, Jandric), 19:55. Penalties-Butler Wor (hooking), 5:29; served by Beauregard Tr (bench – too many men), 7:53.

1st OT Period-9, Trois-Rivières, Francis 20 (Welsh, Beauregard), 4:49. Penalties-Beauregard Tr (tripping), 0:40.

Shots on Goal-Trois-Rivières 21-6-6-3-36. Worcester 12-12-12-4-40.
Power Play Opportunities-Trois-Rivières 0 / 1; Worcester 1 / 5.
Goalies-Trois-Rivières, Montpetit 1-0-0-0 (40 shots-36 saves). Worcester, Tikkanen 17-15-3-0 (36 shots-31 saves).
Referees-Austin O’Rourke (10), John Lindner (6).
Linesmen-Shane Kanaly (74), Brent Colby (77).

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