Woo Rewind - Alex Stalock's win highlights a disappointing Sharks road trip

Sharks goalie Alex Stalock stopped 15-of-16 shots, including a penalty shot, in his return game for Worcester on Feb. 19 in Springfield. It was Stalock's first AHL start since Feb. 4, 2011. Photo courtesy of Rick Cinclair of www.telegram.com

Looking to better position themselves in the AHL Eastern Conference playoff picture, the Worcester Sharks embarked on a four game road trip. Unfortunately for the Sharks, the road trip didn't go according to plan as the Sharks lost 3-of-4 games {two of which they were leading going into the third period} and earned only two points out of a possible eight.

As a result of their disappointing road trip, the Sharks are now 24-18-4-5 with 57 points, and are in third place of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference, one point behind the second place Manchester Monarchs and 15 points behind the division leading St. John's IceCaps.

The Sharks' road trip started Wednesday night {Feb. 15} as the team traveled to the Cumberland County Civic Center in Portland, ME, to play the hosting Portland Pirates in their seventh meeting of the season and were defeated 4-3 after allowing two unanswered goals in a 33 second span in the third period.

Jack Combs, Nathan Moon and Brandon Mashinter scored for the Sharks while goalie Harri Sateri {11-9-0, 2.66 goals against average, .906 save percentage} stopped 23-of-27 shots. In addition, Moon {1-1-2} and defenseman Matt Irwin {0-2-2} had multi-point games for the Sharks.

Pirates defenseman David Rundblad gave the Pirates an early 1-0 lead with his power play goal, sixth goal of the season, at 7:16 of the first period. With Sharks forward Marek Viedensky and defenseman Taylor Doherty both in the penalty box for slashing {called 30 seconds apart}, the Pirates won the ensuing face-off inside the Sharks zone, and Rundblad fired a rocket of a shot from the top of the center point that beat Sateri top shelf on the blocker side for the goal.

Fireworks appeared at 14:34 as Sharks forward Cam MacIntyre dropped the gloves with Pirates defenseman Nathan Oystrick in a 30 second scrap after Oystrick boarded Sharks forward Curt Gogol from behind in front of two referees, which wasn't called. The fight was MacIntyre's fifth of the season.

25 seconds later, Pirates forward Andy Miele extended the Pirates lead to 2-0 with his 10th goal of the season. Rushing into the Sharks zone 3-on-2, Pirates forward Brett MacLean fired a shot on net from inside the left face-off circle that Sateri stopped. MacLean corralled the rebound, skated behind Sateri's net and centered the puck in front on top of the goalie crease to Miele, who was able to slide the puck past Sateri on the blocker side for the goal while absorbing a hit from Sharks captain Mike Moore.

Combs cut the Pirates lead in half with a power play goal, his 12th goal of the season, at 16:49. With Rundblad in the penalty box for holding, Sharks forward Tim Kennedy entered the Pirates zone through the middle, and passed the puck over to Combs, who skated into the right face-off circle and fired a quick shot on net that beat Pirates goalie Marc Cheverie for the goal. Irwin was credited with the secondary assist on the goal.

Moon tied the game with a power play goal, his seventh goal of the season, at 3:01 of the second period. With Pirates forwards Patrick O'Sullivan and Alexandre Bolduc in the penalty box for tripping and hooking respectively {penalties were called 41 seconds apart}, the Sharks applied tremendous pressure inside the Pirates zone but couldn't score. Just as O'Sullivan came out of the penalty box, Sharks forward Brodie Reid fired a quick shot on net from inside the left face-off circle that Moon tipped in front for the goal. As on the first goal, Irwin was credited with the secondary assist.

Mashinter gave the Sharks a 3-2 lead with his power play goal, 10th goal of the season, at 14:25. With Pirates forward Ashton Rome in the penalty box for roughing, the Sharks' second power play unit {Mashinter, Moon and Ryane Del Monte} frustrated the Pirates penalty killers with their relentless cycling inside the Pirates zone. Holding the puck behind Cheverie's net, Mashinter fired a quick wrap-around shot on the right side that Cheverie stopped with his pad. However, Cheverie couldn't locate the puck in the crease, and Mashinter crashed the crease in a heads-up play and pushed the puck into the net for the goal.

As Mashinter was celebrating his goal, Pirates forward Jordan Szwarz tackled Del Monte from behind, causing a scrum up at the left side of of the goal crease. As the Sharks skated back to their bench to celebrate their goal, Moon gave Oystrick a shoulder bump, to which Oystrick responded by giving Moon a shot in the back with a swing of his hockey stick. Not liking what Oystrick did to Moon and remembering what Oystrick did to him earlier in the game, Gogol went over to Oystrick to have words with him but was kept at bay by Bolduc, who gave Gogol as slash in the legs. When it was all sorted out, Szwarz and Del Monte got two minutes each for roughing while Gogol got two minutes for unsportsmanlike conduct.

Fireworks reappeared at 19:06 as Del Monte dropped the gloves with Pirates captain Dean Arsene after Arsene took exception to being hit high with a cross-check from Del Monte. The brief scrap in front of the benches lasted six seconds and nearly resulted in a line brawl. The fight was Del Monte's third of the season.

In the third period, the Pirates stunned the Sharks with two quick goals in a 33 second span to take a 4-3 lead. Szwarz tied the game at 14:43 with his fifth goal of the season off a quick shot from in the slot that got through traffic and beat Sateri for the score. The goal was set-up by Rundblad, who put on a skating clinic by taking the puck off the right wall, skating out to the blue line, around the Sharks defense, and into the left face-off circle, where he pushed the puck in front to Szwarz, who was wide open in the slot.

Pirates defenseman Tyler Eckford gave the Pirates a 4-3 lead with his seventh goal of the season at 15:16. Rushing into the Sharks zone 4-on-3, Miele pulled up along the left half wall and sent the puck across to a wide open Eckford, who fired a quick shot on net from the right slot that beat Sateri over the shoulder for what held up as the game winning goal.

With Sateri pulled for the extra attacker with 55 seconds remaining in the third period, the Sharks got the puck deep inside the Pirates zone. Quickly passing the puck around, the Sharks found Andrew Murray all alone top of the goalie crease for a point blank scoring chance. However, Cheverie pushed across his crease and got his right pad on the puck to rob Murray of the tying goal.

For the game, the Sharks outshot the Pirates 35-27, were 3-for-8 with the man advantage and 4-for-5 on the penalty kill... Ben Guite {inj}, Tony Lucia {inj}, Sena Acolatse {inj}, Frazer McLaren {inj}, Jimmy Bonneau {scr} and Alex Stalock {scr} did not dress for the Sharks... Combs extended his goal streak to four games... With the two fights, the Sharks now have an AHL leading 84... On Feb. 14, Sharks forward Chad Costello was released from his PTO and returned to the Colorado Eagles of the ECHL.

Pelech_whale_fb_medium
Photo courtesy of www.facebook.com/ctwhale

On Saturday night {Feb. 18}, the Sharks traveled to the XL Center in Hartford, CT, to play the hosting Connecticut Whale in their third meeting of the season and were defeated 3-1 after allowing three answered goals in the third period. Bonneau had the lone goal for the Sharks while goalie Tyson Sexsmith {10-10-2-5, 2.21 goals against average, .923 save percentage} stopped 35-of-37 shots. In the second period alone, Sexsmith stopped 19 shots.

Fireworks appeared at 14:42 of the first period as Sharks defenseman Matt Pelech dropped the gloves with Whale defenseman Jared Nightingale at center ice off a face-off. The 16 second scrap saw Pelech land a nice mixture of overhand rights and body shots on Nightingale before wrestling Nightingale down to the ice. The fight was Pelech's ninth of the season.

Bonneau gave the Sharks a 1-0 lead with his second goal of the season at 6:59 of the second period. Corralling a neutral zone pass from Irwin on the right side, Bonneau skated into the Whale zone along the right boards, and tried to center the puck in front but Whale defenseman Wade Redden got his hockey stick on the puck to break up the pass attempt. Following the puck, Bonneau got around Redden, corralled the puck and lifted a backhanded shot from deep inside the right face-off circle that beat Whale goalie Cameron Talbot over the shoulder for the goal.

Midway through the third period, the Sharks experienced a deja-vu moment as the Whale scored two goals in a span of 57 seconds to take a 2-1 lead. Whale forward Andreas Thuresson tied the game at 1-1 with his 11th goal of the season at 8:52. With the puck inside the Sharks zone, Redden sent a shot pass from the top of the left point to Whale forward Tommy Grant, who was positioned all alone at the right side of the goalie crease. Sexsmith made the initial save on Grant but kicked the rebound out to Thuresson, who fired the puck into the open net from the right slot for the goal.

Whale forward Kris Newbury gave the Whale a 2-1 lead with his 19th goal of the season at 9:49 after finishing off a 2-on-1 rush with linemate Andre Deveaux.

With Sexsmith pulled for the extra attacker and a face-off inside the Whale zone with 47.4 seconds remaining, the Sharks lost the face-off and the Whale were able to get the puck out to center ice. Whale forward Casey Wellman corralled the loose the puck, skated into the Sharks zone along the right wing and was hooked down from behind by Irwin and Moore before getting a shot off towards the open net. Despite not shooting the puck, Wellman was credited with the goal since it was a breakaway attempt on an empty net. The goal was the 17th of the season for Wellman.

For the game, the Sharks were outshot 38-35, were 0-for-2 with the man advantage and 3-for-3 on the penalty kill... Guite {inj}, Lucia {inj}, Acolatse {inj}, McLaren {inj}, Gogol {inj}, MacIntyre {inj} and Sateri {scr} did not dress for the Sharks... Ian O'Conner, who was signed to a PTO by the Sharks on Feb. 17, made his AHL debut and wore #36 for the Sharks... Combs had his four game goal scoring streak snapped... With the one fight, the Sharks now have an AHL leading 85.

Murray_goal_beswick_medium
Photo courtesy of Michael Beswick of www.masslive.com/republican

On Sunday afternoon {Feb. 19}, the Sharks traveled to the Mass Mutual Center in Springfield, MA, to play the hosting Springfield Falcons in their seventh meeting of the season and skated away with a 2-1 victory. Murray and Nick Petrecki scored for the Sharks while Stalock {1-0-0, 1.00 goals against average, .938 save percentage} stopped 15-of-16 shots in his first AHL start since being injured in a game against the Manchester Monarchs back on Feb. 4, 2011.

Murray gave the Sharks an early 1-0 lead with his second goal of the season at 7:56 of the first period off a blast of a shot from on top of the left face-off circle that skipped through the pads of Falcons goalie Manny Legace for the goal. Viedensky and Brian O'Hanley were credited with the assists.

Petrecki extended the Sharks lead to 2-0 with his first goal of the season at 17:46. Off a failed clear attempt by the Falcons inside their own zone, Petrecki held the puck in at the top of the left point and fired a quick shot on net that deflected off a Falcons player in front and beat Legace through the pads for the goal.

In the second period, the Sharks were called for four consecutive penalties within the first 9:23, which eventually resulted in a 5-on-3 power play opportunity for the Falcons. With Sharks forwards Mike Connolly and Kennedy in the penalty box for interference and cross-checking respectively {penalties were called 27 seconds apart}, Falcons forward Alexandre Giroux fired a shot on net from inside the left face-off circle. Stalock made the save but Falcons captain Dane Byers, who was left all alone on top of the goalie crease, corralled the rebound and pushed the puck into the open net for the goal.

Not wanting to experience another deja-vu moment, the Sharks clamped down defensively in the third period and only allowed two shots on Stalock. However, Giroux was awarded a penalty shot at 6:01 on a questionable borderline call, which was one of many made in the game by the officiating crew. Looking to tie the game on the penalty shot, Giroux skated in on the left side, pulled up in front and shot the puck wide of the net as Stalock stayed with him the entire way.

After the game was over, a line brawl nearly broke out behind Stalock's net as Pelech dropped the gloves with Byers in a brief scrap. The fight was Pelech's 10th of the season.

For the game, the Sharks outshot the Falcons 29-16, were 0-for-5 with the man advantage and 5-for-6 on the penalty kill... Guite {inj}, Lucia {inj}, Acolatse {inj}, McLaren {inj}, Gogol {inj}, MacIntyre {inj}, O'Connor {scr} and Sateri {scr} did not dress for the Sharks... John McCarthy was back in the lineup for Worcester after being returned by San Jose on Feb. 18... With the fight at the end of the game, the Sharks now have an AHL leading 86.

Irwin_crunch_site_medium
Photo courtesy of www.syracusecrunch.com

On Tuesday night {Feb. 21}, the Sharks traveled to the Oncenter War Memorial Arena in Syracuse, NY, to play the hosting Syracuse Crunch in their second {and final} meeting of the season and were defeated 4-2. Kennedy and O'Hanley scored for the Sharks while Sexsmith stopped 22-of-26 shots.

Crunch forward John Mitchell gave the Crunch a 1-0 lead with his fifth goal of the season at 17:57 of the first period. With the puck inside the Sharks zone, O'Hanley skated up the middle towards the blue line, and had the puck stolen by Mitchell, who skated in all alone on Sexsmith and fired a quick shot from deep in the slot that beat Sexsmith through the pads for the goal.

34 seconds later, Kyle Palmieri extended the Crunch lead to 2-0 with his 29th goal of the season. Corralling a neutral zone pass from linemate Riley Holzapfel, Palmeri rushed into the Sharks zone down the right wing, got around Moore, went forehand-to-backhand and fired the puck past Sexsmith on the blocker side for the goal.

Kennedy cut the Crunch lead in half with a power play goal, his sixth goal of the season, just 37 seconds into the second period. With carry over time on the hooking penalty to Crunch forward Ryan O'Marra, Irwin fired a shot on net from the top of the right point that was blocked in front. McCarthy corralled the rebound and fired a shot on net that Crunch goaltender Iiro Tarkki stopped. However, the rebound went right to Kennedy, who shot the puck into an open net from on top of the goalie crease for the goal.

O'Hanley made up for his turnover earlier in the game by scoring his first goal of the season at 1:24 to tie the game at 2-2. After ringing a shot off the post, O'Hanley corralled a pass at the top of the right point, shot faked at the top of the slot, skated into the left face-off circle and snapped a shot on net that beat Tarkki for the goal. Mashinter and Moon were credited with the assists on the goal.

The nastiness picked up at 7:01 when Crunch forward Troy Bodie kneed Doherty inside the Sharks zone. Moon skated right after Bodie to stand-up for Doherty {who was ok} and engaged in a brief scrap with Bodie before being separated by the linesmen. When it was all sorted out, Bodie got five minutes for fighting and two minutes for kneeing while Moon got five minutes for fighting and two minutes for roughing. The fight was Moon's ninth of the season.

At 19:34, Moore dropped the gloves with Crunch forward Jean-Francois Jacques after Jacques went after Moore, who was pushed into Tarkki by Crunch defenseman Matt Smaby when making a strong move towards the net. The brief scrap saw one shot landed by Jacques before the two wrestled each other down to the ice. The fight was Moore's fourth of the season.

After the Sharks failed to convert on a 5-on-3 power play advantage at the start of the third period, Doherty dropped the gloves with Bodie at 5:47. The two exchanged wild haymakers in the spirited scrap that caused Sharks play-by-play announcer Eric Lindquist to say, "Taylor Doherty is growing up in front of our very own eyes and is a hockey player."

Crunch forward Andrew Gordon gave the Crunch a 3-2 lead with his third goal of the season at 6:36. After Sexsmith had stopped Gordon from point blank range, Crunch defenseman Mathieu Carle fired a shot on net from the top of the slot that went wide. Gordon corralled the loose puck, went around Sexsmith's net and backhanded the puck into an open net on the right side for what held up as the game winning goal.

Palmieri added an insurance goal for the Crunch at 11:07 after corralling a pass near the left corner of the Sharks zone and firing a quick shot on net from point blank range that beat Sexsmith. The goal was Palmieri's 30th goal in just 34 games played for the Crunch.

Despite firing 17 shots on Tarkki in the third period and having a 6-on-4 power play advantage for the final 1:48 of the game, the Sharks couldn't get the puck past Tarkki.

For the game, the Sharks outshot the Crunch 44-26, were 1-for-7 with the man advantage and 2-for-2 on the penalty kill... Guite {inj}, Lucia {inj}, Acolatse {inj}, McLaren {inj}, Gogol {inj}, MacIntyre {inj}, Del Monte {scr} and Stalock {scr} did not dress for the Sharks... With the three fights, the Sharks now have 89 for the season, which continues to lead the AHL... Antero Niittymaki was the back-up goaltender for the Crunch... The Sharks are 13th in the AHL on the power play at 18.3%, sixth on the penalty kill at 84.4% and second in penalty minutes at 21.3 per game... The loss was the Sharks first loss to the Crunch in four all-time meetings.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Fear The Fin

You must be a member of Fear The Fin to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Fear The Fin. You should read them.

Join Fear The Fin

You must be a member of Fear The Fin to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Fear The Fin. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9355_tracker