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IceCaps sink Sharks to snap streak Posted by IceCaps Staff on

St. John’s breaks out of goalless drought with 3-2 victory

Will O’Neill scored a pair of power-play goals and Austen Brassard chipped in with his first goal of the year as the St. John’s IceCaps ended a three-game goalless drought with a 3-2 victory over the Worcester Sharks at Mile One Centre on Saturday night.

Goaltender Connor Hellebuyck was strong once again between the pipes for St. John’s and allowed two goals on 43 shots.

It was the Sharks who got the scoring started early on Saturday night. Just 22 seconds into the game, the Sharks fired a quick a shot on Hellebuyck and Evan Trupp was in the right place at the right time to knock in the rebound for the early lead.

The IceCaps tied the game and ended their goalless skid just over a minute later. Austen Brassard planted in the slot and took a great pass from Nicolas Blanchard behind the net and snapped the puck behind Sharks starter Aaron Dell at 1:35.

The back-and-forth play continued throughout the first period as the Sharks took the lead again with 11:29 left in the frame. With Brassard in the box for holding, Worcester sustained offensive pressure in the IceCaps zone and Melker Karlsson attempted to send a pass in front from the left circle and it deflected off an IceCaps defender in front of the net and behind a helpless Hellebuyck.

The IceCaps managed to tie the game on the power play with 8:47 remaining in the first period. O’Neill sent a shot on goal from the right point that eluded Dell on the glove side, giving the IceCaps their first multi-goal game since Nov. 26.

The IceCaps earned their first lead of the game in the first six minutes of the second period as O’Neill again sent a strong wrist shot on net from the point, this time beating Dell five-hole for his second power play goal of the game at 5:31.

St. John’s forward JC Lipon kept the momentum rolling through the second period as he dropped the gloves with Gus Young, with both skaters landing big punches, much to the delight of the fans at Mile One.

Worcester carried the play in the third period and outshot the IceCaps 10-2 in the final frame but Hellebuyck and the defense battened down the hatches to keep the puck out of their net for the remainder of the game.

The IceCaps are back at Mile One Centre on Tuesday, Dec. 9 as they host the Providence Bruins for a two-game series, their last at Mile One Centre until after the holiday break. Catch all the action with broadcaster Brian Rogers at www.stjohnsicecaps.com and 930 AM This is Newfoundland Labrador, or watch on Rogers TV and online at www.ahllive.com. Pregame show begins a half hour before puck drop.

Notes: Not dressed: Keaton Ellerby, Jason Jaffray, Brandon MacLean, Blair Riley, Patrick Holland, Ralfs Freibergs … St. John’s went 2-for-2 with the man advantage and 3-for-4 on the penalty kill… The IceCaps were outshot 42-20 in the game and 85-42 combined vs Worcester… Molson Canadian Three Stars: 1. Will O’Neill 2. Connor Hellebuyck 3. Evan Trupp … Mary Brown’s Hardest Working Player: Mike Cornell.

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