WORCESTER, Mass – The Worcester Sharks (23-23-3-1, 50pts) dropped a 5-1 contest to the St. John’s IceCaps (30-19-1-3, 64pts)before 3,509 fans as the Sharks returned home to the DCU Center Friday evening for the first time since Feb. 1st. Worcester will complete their two-game home series with St. John’s tomorrow evening, Saturday, Feb. 22nd at 7:00 p.m. when they’ll look for revenge against the divisional opponent.
Worcester’s Sena Acolatse scored the sole goal for the Sharks in the game while Troy Grosenick allowed four goals on 21 shots before he was replaced by Harri Sateri at the 8:02 mark of the second period. Carl Klingberg scored back-to-back in the first period for the IceCaps while Jason Jaffray, Blair Riley and Kyle MacKinnon accounted for St. John’s three second period goals. Michael Hutchinson made 33 saves as Worcester dropped their season high 4th straight game in regulation and have been outscored 22-3.
The first 20 minutes of play concluded with the Sharks behind two goals as the IceCaps converted twice in the period to take a 2-0 lead. The IceCaps’ Carl Klingberg accounted for both goals. The first came 13:47 into the period when Eric O’Dell and Klingberg attacked the Sharks’ net in a 2-on-1 play. Klingberg (14th) tipped O’Dell’s pass above Troy Grosenick, who was down on the ice in attempt to make the save. Klingberg’s second tally of the night resulted at 17:20, when Grosenick made a right pad save on Zach Redmond’s bullet from the point. Klingberg (15th) then cleaned up the garbage and buried the rebound into the net solidifying St. John’s 2-0 lead for the period. Shots were 16-14 in favor of the IceCaps.
The second period ended with the Sharks trailing 5-1 after a lone Worcester goal and three St. John’s goals. The IceCaps opened the scoring just 2:17 into the period when Jason Jaffray (15th) took an off-angled shot from the lower right side of the Sharks defensive zone that squeaked by Grosenick. The Sharks answered just over a minute later on a power play, at 3:41. Sena Acolatse (5th) took a wicked wrister from the point that found its way through both the IceCaps defense and Hutchinson, who was screened in front. After a few minutes of back-and-forth play, St. John’s netted two more insurance goals within 50 seconds of each other, and with Worcester making a goalie change between the two. The first, occurred at 8:02 on a fast break down the ice by Blair Riley (4th) right after a Sharks power play expired. The proceeding unfolded at 8:52 with Harri Sateri between the pipes, when the IceCaps cycled the puck in their offensive end until Kyle MacKinnon (6th) sent the puck into the left side of the net. Shots for the second were 11-7, with Worcester having the edge over St. John’s.
The third period did not account for any goals from either side, as the score remained 5-1 from beginning to end. Sateri remained in net for the Sharks and blocked away all eight of the IceCaps shots on goal while Hutchinson pushed aside all nine of Worcester’s attempts, keeping the period scoreless.
The Sharks’ overall record slumps to 23-23-3-1, 50pts and 12-10-0-1, 25pts at home.
Notes: Three Stars: 3rd star: Michael Hutchinson (33 Saves) 2nd star: Zach Redmond (0-2-2, +4, 3 Shots) 1st star: Carl Klingberg (2-0-2, +2, 3 Shots) ….Final shots were 34-31 in favor of Worcester…Michael Hutchinson made 33 saves on 34 shots for St. John’s…Troy Grosenick made 17 saves on 21 shots for Worcester while Harri Sateri made 9 saves on 10 shots….Worcester went 1-6 on the power play while St. John’s went 0-4…Matt Pelech (inj), John McCarthy (inj), Jimmy Bonneau, Adam Comrie and Nick Petrecki did not dress for Worcester….Marek Viedensky returned back into the lineup after missing seven consecutive games due to injury…James Livingston also returned to the lineup after skipping last weekend’s action from illness…The Sharks are 10-6-3-1 in 20 career matchups with the IceCaps…The Sharks are now on a 4-game winless streak for the first time in regulation this season after tonight’s loss and dropped below .500 for the first time since Jan. 10th… Yanni Gourde picked up an assist on Acolatse’s lone goal…Dan DaSilva (2nd FM) dropped the gloves with Patrice Cormier (6th FM) in the third period in the only fight of the game.