James Livingston scored what held up as the game-winning-goal at 10:32 of the second period, rookie Daniil Tarasov extended his point streak to four games with a power play goal and Harri Sateri made 21 saves for his eighth win of the season as the Worcester Sharks ended their five-game losing streak with a 3-1 win over the AHL best Springfield Falcons Friday night at the MassMutual Center, snapping the Falcons six-game winning streak.
The Sharks, who won for the first time since defeating the Falcons 4-3 in overtime at the DCU Center back on January 11, moved into sixth place of the Eastern Conference standings and now trail the Portland Pirates by six points for first place in the Atlantic Division.
The Falcons jumped out to an early 1-0 lead when forward Scott Howes deflected a Bryan Helmer shot from the right point past Sateri at 3:07 for his second goal of the season. Tommy Grant answered back for the Sharks 71-seconds later with a shorthanded goal, his 10th goal of the season and first with the Sharks, off a great individual effort that saw Grant rush into the Falcons zone down the left side, cut in front and rip a backhanded shot past Falcons goaltender Curtis McElhinney for the Sharks' second shorthanded goal of the season.
In the second period, Livingston put the Sharks up 2-1 when he capped off a 3-on-1 rush by sniping a shot from the left face-off circle over McElhinney's shoulder for his third goal of the season and what held up as the game-winning-goal. Sharks captain John McCarthy was credited with the lone assist.
With a power play opportunity just 1:44 into the third period, Tarasov added an insurance goal for the Sharks when he buried home a shot from the right face-off circle dot at 2:37 after corralling a cross ice pass from Sharks defenseman Danny Groulx, who was positioned on the left side wall. Sharks defenseman Denny Urban was credited with the secondary assist on the goal, which was Tarasov's second of the season.
NOTES: Shots were 22-18 in favor of the Falcons... The Sharks went 1-for-4 on the power play and 3-for-3 on the penalty kill... Sateri is now 8-9-2-1 with a 2.72 goals-against-average and .908 save percentage... Tarasov has four points (2-2-4) during his four-game point streak... Livingston scored his first goal in 12 games... Groulx and Tim Kennedy returned to the Sharks lineup after missing 21 and nine games respectively due to injuries... Taylor Doherty (inj), Sena Acolatse (inj), Jimmy Bonneau (inj), Sebastian Stalberg (scr), Mike Banwell (scr), Travis Oleksuk (scr) and Mike Brennan (scr) did not dress for the Sharks... Matt Pelech played forward for the Sharks... Jon Matsumoto had a team high three shots on goal... This was the second of eight meetings between the teams this season... The Sharks are 2-0-0-0 against the Falcons this season, 12-9-0-1 on the road and 20-17-1-3 with 44 points overall.
1. James Livingston - Sharks (1-0-1, GWG)
2. Scott Howes - Falcons (1-0-1)
3. Daniil Tarasov - Sharks (1-0-1)