Ferriero, Stalock lead Worcester past Manchester

Benn Ferriero scored two goals, Sean Sullivan and Jonathan Cheechoo each had two-point nights and goalie Alex Stalock made 37 saves as the Worcester Sharks {6-3-1-2; 15 points} defeated the Manchester Monarchs {7-5-1-1; 16 points} 3-1 Friday night at the Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, New Hampshire, sweeping the home-and-home series.

After a scoreless first period, Sullivan gave Worcester a 1-0 lead at 9:17 of the second period with his third goal of the year. Sullivan ripped one from between the face-off circles that beat Manchester goalie Jeff Zatkoff {4-5-1} top shelf and under the crossbar. Dan DaSilva, who stole the puck from behind the net and centered the puck to Sullivan, along with Brandon Mashinter were credited with assists on the goal.

Ferriero, who was re-assigned to Worcester on November 10 as a result of Joe Thornton coming off suspension, scored his eighth goal of the season at 13:28 of the period on the power-play. Ferriero got behind the Manchester defense and ripped one over the shoulder of Zatkoff to give Worcester a 2-0 lead. Sullivan and Cheechoo were credited with assists on the goal.

Manchester would respond early in the third period when on their seventh power-play of the game, Alec Martinez fired a shot through traffic from five-feet on top of circle and beat Stalock {5-4-1} to make it a 2-1 deficit. The goal snapped Worcester's six-game streak of not allowing a power-play goal. Justin Azevedo and Bud Holloway were credited with assists on the goal.

At the 6:33 mark of the period, Manchester's Richard Clune walloped Worcester's Matt Irwin from behind with a dirty hit that saw Irwin both defenseless and unprotected. AHL referees David Banfield and Jamie Koharski finally had enough of Clune's antics as he was assessed a five-minute major for boarding and a game misconduct. In total, Clune amassed 26-penalty minutes and refused to fight Mashinter after his hit on Irwin and his previous actions of running into Stalock and Corey Quirk in the second period.

With 4:40 remaining, Ferriero sealed the game for Worcester with his ninth goal of the year and second of the game. T.J. Trevelyan went wide, found Cheechoo in the slot, who toe-dragged the puck and put a shot on net that rebounded right to Ferriero, who buried home the rebound.

Worcester will be back in action Saturday night at the DCU Center as they host the Wilkes-Barre Penguins. Puck drops at 7:00 p.m/et.


NOTES.....Ferriero has scored a goal in three-straight games.....Worcester is 5-0 when scoring the games first goal.....Worcester has earned at least one point in five-straight games.....This was the 50th meeting between the two teams.....Worcester is 24-18-5-3 all-time vs. Manchester.....Manchester out-shot Worcester 38-19.....Worcester signed goalie Riley Gill to a PTO contract, who was 3-0 in the ECHL, as a result of Tyson Sexsmith's hand injury suffered in a goalie fight last Sunday with Bakersfield's Josh Tordjman.....Garet Hunt was released from his PTO contract earlier in the week and has joined the Stockton Thunder of the ECHL.....Carter Hutton, Tony Lucia, Joe Loprieno and Cameron MacIntyre were scratches for Worcester.....3 STARS were Martinez {1 point: 1 goal}, Sullivan {2 points: 1 goal, 1 assist} and Stalock {37 saves; 97.3% sv}.

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