The Worcester Sharks scored two quick goals in their Black Friday contest against Manchester but still found themselves trailing 3-2 entering the third period, where Captain John McCarthy would connect to send the game to overtime and rookie Freddie Hamilton would notch his second pro goal–and second game winner–to lift the WorSharks to a 4-3 victory over the Monarchs at the Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, New Hampshire.
WorSharks Freddie Hamilton battles the Monarchs Marc-Andre Cliche
in the corner during the second period of their game Friday.
(photo courtesy of Mark Bolton/Union Leader)
Worcester would get an early power play when Manchester center Marc-Andre Cliche was called for high sticking on the first shift of the game, and the WorSharks would make the Monarchs pay with a Tim Kennedy goal just 50 seconds into the contest. The play began with Danny Groulx tracking down a pass from Sena Acolatse and the sending a feed over to Kennedy in the right face-off circle. From there Kennedy fired a laser over the glove of Manchester netminder Martin Jones for the 1-0 lead. Curt Gogol would make it 2-0 Worcester when he was in perfect position to tip Matt Tennyson’s blast from the right point past Jones at 3:17. James Livingston picked up his 5th assist on the season with the second helper.
But the WorSharks would find themselves back to even after surrendering two goals for the Monarchs. Defenseman Nick Deslauriers beat Worcester goaltender Harri Sateri with a wrist shot from the right wing half boards for a power play goal at 6:03, and then at 14:56 Jordan Nolan buried a loose puck past Sateri to knot the game. In the second period the scoring string for Manchester continued when the Monarchs hemmed Worcester into their own zone for a long while, with finally defenseman Andrew Bodnarchuk beating Sateri over the left shoulder and just under the crossbar at 16:44.
While the WorSharks already had three comeback wins when they were trailing after two periods this season, that single goal looked like a huge mountain to climb considering Worcester had earned just three points in their last seven games in Manchester, with many of those contests not being very close at all. But McCarthy showed that “C” on his chest wasn’t too heavy for him when he got the WorSharks back to even at 13:13 of the third. Groulx started the play with a shot from the point, and then Worcester’s top line crashed the net, with Kennedy and Bracken Kearns both getting good whacks at the puck while the Monarchs defenders did everything they could to clear the puck away from Jones. Kennedy finally was able to corral the puck and feed it to McCarthy, who roofed it over Jones for the game tyer.
Hamilton would get the WorSharks the win on their only shot in overtime when he took a Groulx feed from the right wing boards and deked Jones from backhand to forehand, and the rookie pushed it into the yawning net as Jones was sliding away haven bitten on the original fake. Brodie Reid had the second assist on the goal at 2:59 of overtime.
Jon Matsumoto (upper body), Travis Oleksuk, Nick Petrecki (hand), and Jimmy Bonneau were the scratches for Worcester. On Wednesday Worcester loaned center Daniil Tarasov to their ECH affiliate, the San Francisco Bulls. Alex Stalock was the back-up goaltender.
The win Friday night ties the WorSharks and Manchester Monarchs for first place in the AHL’s Atlantic Division with identical records (8-6-1-1). Manchester currently has two more regulation/overtime wins than Worcester, which is the first tie breaker, so on paper they lead the division.
The three stars of the game were
1. WOR – 12 Freddie Hamilton (OTgwg)
2. WOR – 7 John McCarthy (gtg)
3. MCH – 37 Thomas Hickey (2a)
The Sharkspage player of the game is Tim Kennedy.
Worcester 2 0 1 1 – 4
Manchester 2 1 0 0 – 3
1st Period-1, Worcester, Kennedy 6 (Groulx, Acolatse), 0:50 (PP). 2, Worcester, Gogol 2 (Tennyson, Livingston), 3:17. 3, Manchester, Deslauriers 1 (Voynov, Vey), 6:03 (PP). 4, Manchester, Nolan 1 (Kozun, Hickey), 14:56. Penalties-Cliche Mch (high-sticking), 0:18; Groulx Wor (high-sticking), 5:34; served by Johnson Mch (bench minor – too many men), 19:02.
2nd Period-5, Manchester, Bodnarchuk 2 (Hickey, Andreoff), 16:44. Penalties-Andreoff Mch (high-sticking), 2:44; Nolan Mch (boarding), 4:34; Mashinter Wor (roughing), 20:00; Deslauriers Mch (roughing), 20:00.
3rd Period-6, Worcester, McCarthy 2 (Kennedy, Kearns), 13:13. Penalties-Pelech Wor (cross-checking), 8:21.
OT Period-7, Worcester, Hamilton 2 (Groulx, Reid), 2:59. Penalties-No Penalties
Shots on Goal-Worcester 10-11-10-1-32. Manchester 9-9-11-1-30.
Power Play Opportunities-Worcester 1 / 4; Manchester 1 / 2.
Goalies-Worcester, Sateri 1-4-1 (30 shots-27 saves). Manchester, Jones 7-6-1 (32 shots-28 saves).
Referees-Jamie Koharski (84).
Linesmen-Brian MacDonald (72), Robert St. Lawrence (10).