Worcester Sharks goaltender Troy Grosenick made 41 saves, including a breakaway save that set-up defenseman Matt Taormina's game-winning-goal at 6:34 of overtime, as the Sharks defeated the Binghamton Senators 3-2 Saturday night at the Floyd L. Maines Veterans Memorial Arena.
"He was the player of the game," said Sharks head coach Roy Sommer of Grosenick in a post game interview with Bill Ballou of Telegram.com. "He was excellent - both goalies were - but how many breakaways did he stop, five or six? He won the game for us with that one in overtime."
The Sharks took a 1-0 lead at 8:15 of the first period when forward Ryan Carpenter deflected linemate Eriah Hayes' shot from the left corner past Senators goaltender Andrew Hammond for his first professional goal. Sharks defenseman Taylor Fedun were credited with the secondary assist.
Senators forward Ryan Dzingel tied the game at 14:34 when he buried home a rebound from on top of the crease after Grosenick had made a lunging split-legged pad save on Senators forward Garrett Thompson's shot from near the left side of the crease.
Sharks forward Micheal Haley regained the Sharks' one goal lead at 18:06 when he found a rebound deep in the center slot and roofed the puck past Hammond for his first goal of the season. Sharks defenseman Taylor Doherty and Hayes were credited with the assists on the goal, which was Haley's first in teal.
In the second period, the Senators tied the game at 16:37 when Dzingel corralled a long pass from Senators defenseman Alex Grant, got behind the Sharks defense and beat Grosenick blocker side for a breakaway goal, his second goal of the game.
The Senators nearly took a 3-2 lead into the second intermission but Grosenick robbed Senators forward Max McCormick of a shorthanded breakaway goal after Taormina lost the puck at his own blue line.
After a scoreless third period, the team's got to try out the new overtime format, which is now a seven minute period that starts 4-on-4 then switches to 3-on-3 pond hockey on the first stoppage in play after three minutes has elapsed in the extra session
With less than a minute remaining in overtime, Senators forward Matt Puempel corralled a lob pass in the neutral zone, skated into the Sharks zone slowly and had his breakaway attempt turned away by Grosenick. Just 19-seconds later, Sharks forward Evan Trupp skated behind Hammond's net and centered the puck out in front to Taormina, who from the left hash mark inside the left slot fired the puck past Hammond for the game-winning-goal on the Sharks' only shot on goal of the overtime session.
"It's different," Taormina said of the new overtime format in a post game interview with Ballou. "You don't do three-on-three in practice, except for down low, not the whole ice. With the way it is now, if you get a chance, you've got to go for it."
NOTES... Shots on goal were 48-43 in favor of the Sharks... The Sharks went 4-for-4 on the penalty kill and 0-for-4 on the power play... Fedun finished with two assists as he had the secondary assist on Taormina's game-winning-goal... Sharks forward Jeremy Langlois had a game high six shots on goal... Sharks forward Petter Emanuelsson played in his first professional game in North America... Carpenter's goal marked the fourth straight year a rookie has scored the Sharks' first goal of the season (via Ballou)... The Sharks have four players under AHL contracts playing in the ECHL, which include defensemen Kyle Bigos (Ontario Reign), Brendan Ellis (South Carolina Stingrays), Nick Jones (Indy Fuel) and goaltender Aaron Dell (Allen Americans)... This was the first of two meetings between the Sharks and Senators this season... The Sharks are 1-0-0-0 against the Senators, 1-0-0-0 on the road and 1-0-0-0 overall with two points... The Sharks are back in action Oct. 17 when they travel to play their Atlantic Division rival the Providence Bruins and then host the Bruins at the DCU Center for their home opener on Oct. 18.
1. Matt Taormina - Sharks (1-0-1, GWG)
2. Ryan Dzingel - Senators (2-0-2)
3. Eriah Hayes - Sharks (0-2-2)
Tarasov / Oleksuk (A) / Hamilton
Haley / Carpenter / Hayes
Lerg / Trupp / Langlois
Bonneau / Schwartz / Emanuelsson
Tennyson / Taormina
DeMelo (A) / Fedun (A)
Abeltshauser / Doherty