IceCaps drub Hartford, 6-2

HARTFORD, Conn – Kael Mouillierat scored a hat trick and added an assist Saturday night at the XL Center, to lead the St. John’s IceCaps to a 6-2 win over the Hartford Wolf Pack.

Jason Jaffray also added a goal and two assists for St. John’s. Jesper Fast had both Wolf Pack goals, both on power plays.

“I expected us to come out with the same energy we had last night and we just didn’t,” a disappointed Wolf Pack head coach Ken Germander said, in reference to Friday night’s 5-2 Hartford win over the Springfield Falcons.IceCaps logo

After having jumped in front only seven seconds into Friday night’s victory, the Wolf Pack fell behind after only 1:09 of Saturday’s game.

Jaffray gave the IceCaps the early lead with his 11th goal of the season, off of a pass from behind the net by Mouillierat. Mouillierat found Jaffray at the left side of the slot, and Jaffray fanned on his first attempt, but on second effort was able to snap a shot past the stick side of Wolf Pack goaltender David LeNeveu (21 saves).

The Wolf Pack killed a 44-second two-man advantage later in the period, but the momentum created by the IceCaps on that power play led to a second St. John’s goal at 12:46.

LeNeveu made a sharp save on a good chance for Kyle MacKinnon, but Adam Lowry jumped on the rebound and ripped a high shot into the net from the left circle.

The IceCaps ended up with a 13-6 shots on goal advantage in the first frame, and the Wolf Pack needed a great save by LeNeveu on an Andrew Gordon chance in the dying seconds of the period to avoid falling into a 3-0 hole.

St. John’s continued controlling the action early in the second period, and Mouillierat scored twice in a span of 53 seconds starting at 6:05, to stretch the IceCaps’ lead to 4-0.

Mouillierat’s first of those two goals was a shorthander, coming with two seconds left in a tripping penalty to Patrice Cormier. Hartford’s Conor Allen lost control of the puck in the neutral zone, and Mouillierat broke in alone down the right side. Mouillierat cut toward the front of the goal, slowed down and then flicked a backhander under the crossbar behind LeNeveu.

Mouillierat scored again at 6:58, after Jaffray sent him and Cormier on a two-on-one. LeNeveu stopped Cormier’s shot, but Mouillierat was unchecked as he jumped on the rebound, and he beat a helpless LeNeveu.

The Wolf Pack got on the board at 17:36 of the second, with Mouillierat in the penalty box for holding. Danny Syvret’s point shot was stopped by IceCap goaltender Michael Hutchinson (24 saves), but Oscar Lindberg worked the rebound to Fast in the left circle, and he ripped a quick shot home.

Then Hartford cut the lead to 4-2 only 38 seconds into the third period, after a Will O’Neill high-sticking penalty carried over from the second frame. Again it was Lindberg setting up Fast, as Lindberg passed from below the goal line, and Fast one-timed it past Hutchinson from the right side of the slot.

The Wolf Pack got into penalty trouble shortly thereafter, though, with Dylan McIlrath taking a tripping minor at 1:29 and Aaron Johnson clearing the puck out of play for a delay of game infraction only eight seconds later.

On the ensuing five-on-three, Jerome Samson whipped a shot from the left-wing faceoff dot over LeNeveu’s right arm at 2:24, increasing St. John’s’ lead to 5-2.

Mouillierat completed his hat trick at 6:02 for a 6-2 final. Mouillierat’s one-timer off of a Jaffray feed got by LeNeveu’s left pad.

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