In front of 5,809 fans on opening night at the DCU Center, defenseman Dylan DeMelo scored the game-winning-goal at 6:33 of overtime as the Worcester Sharks defeated their Atlantic Division rival the Providence Bruins 4-3 Saturday night to sweep the weekend series and remain undefeated.
"I was just kind of hiding in the weeds," said DeMelo of his goal in a post game interview with Bill Ballou of Telegram.com. "I saw that he (Bruins goaltender Malcolm Subban) had a low glove, so I tried to put one over it."
Defenseman Taylor Doherty had a two point game with a goal and an assist; forwards Melker Karlsson and Micheal Haley scored; and goaltender Troy Grosenick made 27 saves as the Sharks improved to 3-0-0 for the first time since starting the 2007-08 season with four straight wins.
Doherty put the Sharks ahead 1-0 at 3:08 of the first period when he fired a wrist shot from just in front of the blue line at the right point that got through a sea of traffic and beat Subban. Sharks forwards Daniil Tarasov and Travis Oleksuk had the assists on the goal, which was Doherty's first of the season.
Karlsson extended the lead to 2-0 at 9:14 when he buried home a rebound from on top of the crease for his first goal of the season and first goal in North America. Sharks forward Ryan Carpenter, who won a battle for the puck behind the net and fired a shot on goal from the left corner, and Sharks defenseman Konrad Abeltshauser had the assists on the goal.
The Bruins cut the Sharks lead in half at 15:43 when forward David Pastrnak finished off a 2-on-0 breakaway with linemate Alexander Khokhlachev by firing the puck into a half open net for his second goal of the season.
At 4:56 of the second period, the Bruins tied the game when forward Jordan Caron beat Grosenick glove side with a wrist shot from the left hash mark that hit off the post and in for his first goal of the season.
Haley regained the Sharks' one goal lead at 13:17 when he got behind the Bruins defense, corralled a long stretch pass up the middle of the ice from forward Freddie Hamilton and beat Subban blocker side on a breakaway for his second goal of the season.
"He can play. That kid can play," said Sharks head coach Roy Sommer of Haley post game to Ballou. "He's not just a fighter."
Just as it appeared the Sharks were going to win the game in regulation, Khokhlachev tied the game at 19:55 on a shot from the right point after several Sharks, one of which was DeMelo, failed to clear the puck out of their zone.
"The puck was bouncing so I didn't want to just whack it and turn it over, but I wound up turning it over anyway," said DeMelo. "To be honest, I felt sick to my stomach afterwards. It could have cost us the game."
DeMelo redeemed himself minutes later when he beat Subban glove side with a wrist shot from on top of the right faceoff circle during the pond hockey portion of overtime to send Sharks fans in attendance home happy.
NOTES... Final shots on goal were 31-30 in favor of the Sharks... The Sharks went 0-for-4 on the power play and 1-for-1 on the penalty kill... Grosenick is now 3-0-0 with a 1.86 goals-against-average and .944 save percentage... Hamilton had a game high five shots on goal... Doherty had the secondary assist on Haley's goal... Sharks defenseman Taylor Fedun and forward Jeremy Langlois had the assists on DeMelo's game winning goal... Prior to the game, forward Eriah Hayes was recalled to San Jose... The Sharks have not trailed this season... This was the second of twelve meetings between the Sharks and Bruins... The Sharks are 2-0-0 against the Bruins, 2-0-0 against the Atlantic Division, 1-0-0 at the DCU Center and 3-0-0 with six points overall... The Sharks are back in action Tuesday night (Oct. 21) as they host the Hartford Wolf Pack in game two of a six game home stand.
1. Dylan DeMelo - Sharks (1-0-1, GWG)
2. Alexander Khokhlachev - Bruins (1-2-3)
3. Taylor Doherty - Sharks (1-1-2)
Tarasov (A) / Oleksuk / Hamilton
Haley / Carpenter / Karlsson
Lerg (A) / Trupp / Langlois
Schwartz / Sheppard / Emanuelsson
Tennyson / Taormina
DeMelo (A) / Fedun
Doherty / Abeltshauser