The Worcester Sharks have enough troubles winning in Hartford without their defense disappearing at critical times, so when that happened on numerous occasions Friday night the result was pretty much what you’d expect to happen as the WorSharks dropped a 5-3 contest to the Wolf Pack at the XL Center in Hartford, Connecticut. Daniil Tarasov, Adam Burish, and Micheal Haley all scored for Worcester while obviously rusty goaltender Troy Grosenick had 23 saves in returning to action after a head injury.
Worcester Sharks goaltender Troy Grosenick returned to action for the first time since an
injury suffered during a morning skate sidelined him in San Jose just after Thanksgiving.
File photo courtesy of TEAMSHRED
For video highlights we’ll have to link to Senndtonews.com. For some reason the Hartford Wolf Pack put post game interviews up on YouTube but no game highlights.
With all the recalls by San Jose lately the Worcester Sharks had no healthy scratches. Both Taylor Doherty (hand) and Petter Emanuelsson (shoulder) are still on the injured list. Both have had recent surgery, and word is Emanuelsson won’t be returning until March. The WorSharks had no official word on how long Doherty is out, and wouldn’t even confirm if his hand was actually broken. It is indeed broken, and Doherty appeared at the Worcester Sharks Booster Club holiday party wearing a very impressive brace on his left hand.
With Grosenick returning J.P Anderson was the backup goaltender. In other transactions goaltender Aaron Dell was reassigned to the Allen Americans (ECHL) and defenseman Nick Jones was returned to the Indy Fuel (ECHL). Forward Melker Karlsson was recalled to San Jose just after the WorSharks trip last weekend, and in news first broken on twitter by this writer Matt Tennyson and Chris Tierney were recalled to San Jose on Wednesday.
With all the comings and goings one transaction that didn’t appear started to stick out a little–PTO defenseman Andrew Blazek was still on the roster despite not appearing in a game. When he arrived from the Cincinnati Cyclones (ECHL) word was Blazek was a solid defenseman that likely had AHL level talent so his being kept around wasn’t that odd, except for the fact the WorSharks reassigned a player they already held the rights to back to the ECHL in Jones. Because you can’t release injured players from try out contracts it was thought Blazek may have been injured in a practice, but it turns out hockey operations in Worcester was really impressed with him and they decided to keep him around to work him out as the extra defenseman. Tennyson’s recall put Blazek into the lineup for the first time Friday and the Robert Morris looked decent out there. Oddly, there has been a recent ECHL transaction for Blazek–his ECHL rights were just traded from Cincy to the South Carolina Stingrays.
The seventeen seconds between the Tarasov and Burish goals is, while pretty fast, not a team record. The WorSharks team record for the two fastest goals remains 12 seconds, set by Garrett Stafford and Tomas Plihal on February 2, 2007 against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. For many years those two goals were also part of the fastest three goals for the Worcester Sharks when Dan Spang added a third for three in 1:32, but a Benn Ferriero/Dan DaSilva/Brandon Mashinter flurry of goals in 1:26 at Springfield on February 11, 2011 erased that mark.
Hartford defensemen Michael Kostka and Conor Allen both finished Friday night’s contest with +4 ratings for the game. There isn’t a single player on the WorSharks roster that’s +4 on the season. That speaks volumes. Excluding Matt Nieto’s +5 in two games last season you have to go back to the 2012-2013 season to find Worcester players that finished better than +4 on the season. That’s inexcusable.
The three stars of the game were
1. HFD – 17 Chris Bourque (g,a)
2. HFD – 28 Michael Kostka (g,a)
3. HFD – 15 Marek Hrivik (2a)
The Sharkspage player of the game is Daniil Tarasov.
Even strength lines
Worcester 0 3 0 – 3
Hartford 1 2 2 – 5
1st Period-1, Hartford, Allen 4 (Kostka), 19:01. Penalties-Lindberg Hfd (tripping), 19:54.
2nd Period-2, Worcester, Tarasov 6 (DeMelo, Langlois), 9:43. 3, Worcester, Burish 1 (Hamilton, Abeltshauser), 10:00. 4, Hartford, Kostka 2 (C. Bourque, Hrivik), 10:19. 5, Hartford, C. Bourque 12 (Hrivik, Malone), 13:35. 6, Worcester, Haley 8 (Trupp), 14:05. Penalties-R. Bourque Hfd (tripping), 3:12.
3rd Period-7, Hartford, Haggerty 6 0:37. 8, Hartford, Lindberg 9 (Crabb, Vaive), 5:07. Penalties-Allen Hfd (interference), 9:20; DeMelo Wor (hooking), 14:20.
Shots on Goal-Worcester 12-14-12-38. Hartford 12-8-8-28.
Power Play Opportunities-Worcester 0 / 3; Hartford 0 / 1.
Goalies-Worcester, Grosenick 7-3-0 (28 shots-23 saves). Hartford, Malcolm 1-0-0 (38 shots-35 saves).
Referees-Evgeny Romasko (6), Olivier Gouin (66).
Linesmen-Luke Galvin (2), Paul Simeon (66).