IceCaps ousted by Marlies
Toronto rides big first period and special teams to 6-2 victory over St. John’s
ST. JOHN’S – The Toronto Marlies defeated the St. John’s IceCaps 6-2 Saturday night in the first of two games between the teams this weekend at Mile One Centre.
For St. John’s, Eric O’Dell scored both goals, his sixth and seventh of the season, in the loss. Eddie Pasquale stopped 18 shots.
Toronto received a solid performance from their special teams units, going 3-for-5 on the power play and adding a shorthanded goal from Greg Scott. St. John’s went 0-for-2 with the man advantage in losing their seventh consecutive home game and fourth straight overall.
St. John’s got off to a fast start with a goal by O’Dell just 12 seconds into the game. O’Dell won the opening faceoff back to Ben Chiarot, who sent the puck to Carl Klingberg on the right side near centre ice. The Swedish winger sent a touch pass to a streaking O’Dell down the middle, and the Ottawa native went in on a partial breakaway, going to the backhand and sliding a shot past Rynnas to give the home side an early 1-0 lead.
The Marlies stormed back midway through the first period with a pair of power play tallies on similar plays. First, Aucoin notched his 10th of the season on a nifty backdoor play. Abbott sent a pass cross-ice to Colborne, who went back the same way to a wide open Aucoin, who potted the tying goal.
Then, less than two minutes later, Abbott converted on his third of the season. Colborne sent a carbon copy of a pass cross ice, this time to a wide open Abbott, who one-timed the puck for a 2-1 Marlies lead.
Toronto added to its lead later in the first, this time shorthanded. Scott forced a turnover in the Marlies’ zone and sped in on a two-on-one, deciding to keep the puck and fire a perfectly placed wrist shot that beat Pasquale high on the glove side, making it 3-1 Toronto.
St. John’s pulled with one with 4:29 to go in the second frame after seemingly gaining some momentum following Ben Chiarot’s brief but spirited tilt with Jerry D’Amigo. Jason Gregoire burst down the left side a fired a slap shot on Rynnas, who made the initial save but gave up a large rebound. O’Dell jumped on the loose puck and smacked it past the Marlies netminder for his second of the game, sending the IceCaps to the dressing room down just 3-2 after forty minutes.
Toronto restored its two-goal lead in the third period on yet another power play. With a delayed penalty on the way to Chiarot for slashing, Colborne’s initial shot from the right circle was stopped, but the rebound came back to the big centreman, who swept home the Marlies’ third power play tally of the night, making it 4-2.
Jerry D’Amigo added an empty netter to make it 5-2 before Carter Ashton scored with 52 seconds remaining after a turnover in the IceCaps zone to cap the scoring.
The IceCaps and Marlies hit the ice again tomorrow for the second of two games at Mile One Centre this weekend. Sunday afternoon’s game is a result of Friday’s postponement due to blizzard conditions in St. John’s.
Catch all the action with broadcaster Brian Rogers at stjohnsicecaps.com and on 930AM This Is Newfoundland Labrador, or watch on Rogers TV and ahllive.com. Puck drop is set for 2:00 p.m. with the pregame show getting underway at 1:30 (all times Newfoundland).
F Eric O’Dell’s goal 12 seconds into the first period set new team records for fastest goal to start both a game and a period. The previous mark for fastest goal to start a game was 17 seconds, set by Brett Festerling on Dec. 17, 2011 at POR. The fastest goal to start a period was scored by Jason Jaffray, 16 seconds into overtime on Jan. 20, 2012 at CT… D Ben Chiarot has recorded an assist in three straight games and has a point in five of his last six contests (1G, 4A)… D Paul Postma, D Zach Redmond, F Alex Burmistrov, F Spencer Machacek, and F Max Macenauer were scratches Saturday after being recalled to attend training camp with the Winnipeg Jets… D Julain Melchiori (finger) and D Travis Ramsey (hand) returned from injury… F Carl Klingberg has a point in two straight games.
Photos (Michael Pardy)