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03/12: IceCaps Weekly

After a perfect week, the IceCaps look to continue recent home dominance

Tuesday, 13.03.2012 / 11:12 AM / St. John's IceCaps
St. John's IceCaps
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03\/12: IceCaps Weekly

The St. John’s IceCaps finished off their seven-game road trip and opened up their six-game home stand in style, coming away with three wins and marching closer to a playoff berth.<\/p>

The St. John’s IceCaps finished off their seven-game road trip and opened up their six-game home stand in style, coming away with three wins and marching closer to a playoff berth.

WEEK IN REVIEW:

Tuesday, March 6 – St. John’s IceCaps 5 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins 2

Capping off a seven-game road trip with a stop in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, St. John’s used a three-goal first period to propel itself to a 5-2 victory over the Penguins. John Albert, Carl Klingberg and Jason DeSantis scored in the opening frame, and despite the Penguins’ best efforts to make it a game by closing the gap to 3-2 after 40 minutes, the IceCaps pulled away in the third. Arturs Kulda scored a beautiful shorthanded goal on a two-on-one rush just 2:47 into the frame, and Ray Sawada notched his first goal as an IceCap just minutes later to lock up the win, the 20th of the season for the IceCaps on the road. Eddie Pasquale made 28 saves for his second straight win.

Friday, March 9 – St. John’s IceCaps 6 Hershey Bears 1

Friday’s homecoming against the visiting Hershey Bears was all about Patrice Cormier. The Moncton native recorded his first professional hat trick (an added an assist) in a 6-1 romp over the Bears. The IceCaps torched Hershey goaltender Braden Holtby for five goals on 29 shots (Dany Sabourin allowed the other in relief) and Pasquale was once again on his game, turning aside 19 shots in a relatively easy victory. Despite a 1-1 tie after 20 minutes, an IceCaps win was never in doubt. Jason Jaffray scored his 17th of the season on a beautiful solo effort early in the second, and after Cormier picked up his second goal of the game just 1:43 later, Kevin Clark converted his 10th on a nice setup from Ben Maxwell to make it 4-1 through two periods. Cormier completed the hat trick early in the third with his second breakaway goal of the night, and Spencer Machacek added his 14th of the season for good measure near the end of the game, with Cormier drawing the assist. Cormier’s four points were a single-game high for an IceCaps player this season.

Saturday, March 10 – St. John’s IceCaps 3 Hershey Bears 2

Saturday’s rematch with the Bears was a tighter checking affair. St. John’s outshot Hershey 15-4 in the first but was unable to get on the board, as goaltender Dany Sabourin kept the visitors in it. The teams traded goals in the second period – Paul Postma netted his 13th of the season, tying him with three other players for the AHL lead among defencemen – and headed into the final 20 minutes knotted at one. Jason King appeared to be the hero at 8:55 of the third when he batted home a loose puck to give the IceCaps a 2-1 lead, but Matt Pope silenced the crowd with 2:41 to go in regulation when a point shot deflected to him in front of the net. Pope cashed in to tie the game at two and send it to overtime. With neither team able to find the twine in the extra frame, a shootout was necessary to settle the score. King reclaimed his hero status by scoring the shootout’s only goal, beating Sabourin blocker side with a well-placed shot and earning the game’s first star honours. Pasquale was brilliant between the pipes once again, making 28 saves and denying all five shooters in the shootout.

UPCOMING GAMES:

The IceCaps continue their six-game home stand with a pair of contests against the Hamilton Bulldogs Tuesday and Wednesday, as well as a two-game set versus the Manchester Monarchs Saturday and Sunday.

St. John’s has dropped its last two against the Bulldogs, both on the road. In their last meeting on Feb. 24, the Bulldogs rallied to win 3-2 in a shootout in front of 11,300 fans at the Bell Centre in Montreal. Hamilton’s only visit to St. John’s came back on Oct. 14 and 15, when the IceCaps dropped their home opener 4-0 but rebounded to post a 6-2 victory the following night.

The IceCaps and Monarchs have met five times this season, with St. John’s posting a perfect 5-0-0-0 record against their division rival. Their last meeting came on Jan. 27, when the IceCaps edged the Monarchs 3-2 at the Verizon Wireless Arena. The IceCaps entertained the Monarchs on Jan. 6 and 7, with the home team sweeping the two game series.

ICECAPS NOTES:

  • Home Sweet Home: After struggling to find consistency at home early on, the IceCaps have found their groove at Mile One Centre. The club has won six straight games at home, improving their record to 17-10-3-0.
  • On the Plus Side: D Arturs Kulda was a plus-5 in this weekend’s series vs. Hershey, boosting his team-high rating to plus-19 for the season and ranking him second overall among AHL defencemen, behind Peoria’s Cade Fairchild (plus-29).
  • Sellout Streak Continues: The IceCaps consecutive sellout streak reached the 30-game plateau with Saturday’s contest at Mile One Centre. The club has eight regular season games remaining on the home portion of its schedule.
  • Pasquale Honoured: Prior to Friday’s game, G Eddie Pasquale was honoured for his Reebok/AHL Player of the Week award for the week of Feb. 6. IceCaps President and CEO Danny Williams presented Pasquale with his award as well as a framed portrait done by local artist Ray Abbott.
  • Wide Margin: Friday’s 6-1 win marked the largest margin of victory (five goals) for the IceCaps this season. Their previous high was four, achieved four times, most recently a Dec. 2 4-0 win in Hamilton against the Bulldogs.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 ANA 66 42 17 7 196 179 91
2 NSH 66 41 18 7 196 162 89
3 STL 64 40 19 5 198 162 85
4 CHI 64 38 21 5 188 152 81
5 MIN 64 35 22 7 181 164 77
6 VAN 64 36 24 4 184 176 76
7 WPG 65 32 21 12 180 175 76
8 CGY 64 35 25 4 182 165 74
9 LAK 64 31 21 12 175 167 74
10 SJS 65 32 25 8 185 183 72
11 DAL 65 29 26 10 203 215 68
12 COL 64 28 25 11 170 183 67
13 ARI 65 21 37 7 142 220 49
14 EDM 64 18 36 10 145 213 46

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
A. Ladd 65 22 30 13 52
B. Little 65 24 27 10 51
B. Wheeler 63 17 29 13 46
D. Byfuglien 65 15 27 6 42
M. Perreault 56 18 18 3 36
M. Scheifele 65 10 26 2 36
M. Frolik 65 14 20 5 34
D. Stafford 59 11 17 -20 28
J. Tlusty 55 13 11 -19 24
E. Kane 37 10 12 -1 22
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
M. Hutchinson 19 8 5 .918 2.34
O. Pavelec 13 13 7 .909 2.57
 
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