The Worcester Sharks, coming off another bad outing where they were totally dominated in every aspect of the game in their 5-1 loss in Manchester, put together another great team effort against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers and behind multiple point nights by Danny Groulx, Sena Acolatse, and Tim Kennedy, and a 33 save performance by Alex Stalock defeated the Sound Tigers 5-2 at the DCU Center in Worcester, Massachusetts for their second victory in three nights against Bridgeport.
Late arriving fans missed the WorSharks jumping out to a quick 1-0 lead when John McCarthy grabbed a goal just 46 seconds into the contest. The Worcester captain broke down the left wing side and skated hard to the Bridgeport net, holding on just long enough for Sound Tigers defenseman Ty Wishart to slide across his path allowing McCarthy a clear shooting lane. McCarthy’s shot wasn’t hard, but it beat Bridgeport netminder Kenny Reiter five-hole on the game’s second shift. Assists on the tally went to Kennedy and Matt Tennyson.
Kennedy would grab a goal of his own at 5:58 to make it 2-0 with a power play tally that started with another rush on the left wing side. Kennedy circled the net and with no Sound Tiger defenseman meeting him on the other side Kennedy wheeled and fired a shot that Reiter made the save on. The rebound when right back to Kennedy, who got enough of it to flip it over the netminder and into the net. Groulx and Acolatse had the helpers on that goal.
In keeping with the theme of assisting on a goal and then scoring one of your own Groulx netted a power play tally of his own at 10:04 to give the WorSharks a 3-0 lead. Groulx and Acolatse exchanged passes along the blue line, and when no Bridgeport player marked him Groulx let one fly from about 55 feet that beat Reiter through a screen. Kennedy had the second assist.
It took until 8:10 of the second period for the theme to continue, and with assists on the last two goals it was certainly Acolatse’s turn. With the puck moving around the boards in the offensive zone it was picked up my Matt Irwin and fed to Acolatse at the right point. The second year defenseman took one stride toward the net and fired a sneaky wrister on net that hit a Sound Tigers defender and deflected past Reiter. James Livingston’s clear around the board earned him the second assist.
Bridgeport would make a game of it with two second period goals of their own. Defenseman Jordan Hill would make it 4-1 at 10:08 with a booming slapshot from the point, and Colin McDonald finished off a rebound attempt at 14:11 to get the Sound Tigers within a pair. Over the next 20 minutes of game time Bridgeport really took it to the WorSharks, but several key saves by Stalock kept the advantage at two.
Jon Matsumoto put the game out of reach at 15:43 of the third with a goal that looked like it was happening in a practice drill. The play began with a Matsumoto and Sebastian Stalberg breaking into the Bridgeport zone two on one where a great backcheck by Sound Tigers center Johan Sundstrom made Stalberg shoot the puck wide. In the ensuing play Stalberg found Matsumoto so wide open in front of Reiter that Matsumoto was able to make two different moves on Reiter while he stood five feet in front of him. Reiter made a nice save on Matsumoto’s first bid, but with no player with acres of Matsumoto he was able to grab the rebound and flip it over Reiter to make it the 5-2 final.
WorSharks scratches were Jimmy Bonneau (healthy), Taylor Doherty (ribs), Matt Pelech (suspended, game three of four), Brodie Reid (shoulder), Mikael Tam (lower body), Daniil Tarasov (healthy), and Marek Viedensky (healthy).
The three stars of the game were
1. WOR – 22 Tim Kennedy (g,2a)
2. WOR – 32 Alex Stalock (33 saves)
3. WOR – 14 Sena Acolatse (g,2a)
The Sharkspage player of the game was Danny Groulx.
Even strength lines
Bridgeport 0 2 0 – 2
Worcester 3 1 1 – 5
1st Period-1, Worcester, McCarthy 1 (Tennyson, Kennedy), 0:46. 2, Worcester, Kennedy 3 (Acolatse, Groulx), 5:58 (PP). 3, Worcester, Groulx 1 (Acolatse, Kennedy), 10:04 (PP). Penalties-Cantin Bri (hooking), 4:02; Gallant Bri (slashing), 9:34; Niederreiter Bri (roughing), 15:00; Gourde Wor (roughing), 15:00; Mashinter Wor (roughing), 15:00; McLaren Wor (roughing), 18:05.
2nd Period-4, Worcester, Acolatse 3 (Irwin, Livingston), 8:10. 5, Bridgeport, Hill 1 (Cantin, McDonald), 10:08. 6, Bridgeport, McDonald 1 (Watkins, Donovan), 14:11 (PP). Penalties-Riley Bri (roughing), 2:00; DeFazio Bri (fighting), 4:41; Nelson Bri (goaltender interference), 4:41; Banwell Wor (fighting), 4:41; Sheppard Wor (slashing), 12:32.
3rd Period-7, Worcester, Matsumoto 2 (Stalberg, Groulx), 15:43. Penalties-Banwell Wor (delay of game), 2:08; Wishart Bri (elbowing), 6:27; Niederreiter Bri (kneeing), 16:42; Gallant Bri (fighting), 19:57; Hill Bri (hooking), 19:57; Gogol Wor (fighting), 19:57; McLaren Wor (misconduct – continuing altercation), 19:57.
Shots on Goal-Bridgeport 12-15-8-35. Worcester 19-9-18-46.
Power Play Opportunities-Bridgeport 1 / 4; Worcester 2 / 7.
Goalies-Bridgeport, Reiter 0-1-0 (46 shots-41 saves). Worcester, Stalock 2-2-0 (35 shots-33 saves).
Referees-Mark Lemelin (41), Terry Koharski (10).
Linesmen-Ed Boyle (81), Todd Whittemore (70).