IceCaps stymied by Falcons
Photo courtesy Springfield Falcons
Club loses 3-1 to Springfield in playoff tune-up
The St. John’s IceCaps dropped a 3-1 decision to the Springfield Falcons Saturday night at the MassMutual Center.
Manny Legace and Mike Clemente combined to stop 32-of-33 shots while Daniel New and Boone Jenner each scored their first professional goals for Springfield who, despite the win, will miss the playoffs for the ninth straight season.
St. John’s (43-24-5-3) was shut out for the game’s first 58 minutes, finally finding the back of the net with 1:16 remaining on a power play goal by Eric O’Dell. David Aebischer made 26 saves in the loss.
Springfield opened the scoring at 9:42 of the first on a goal by the AHL’s active leader in goals, Alexandre Giroux. Brett Regner took a slap shot from the right side and the rebound kicked out to Giroux in the slot, who banged in his 28th of the season and a 1-0 Falcons lead.
Springfield extended the lead to two early in the second on a soft goal. Daniel New took a quick shot from the side boards that handcuffed Aebischer and ended up in the net for the Falcon defenceman’s first professional goal.
The Falcons added another insurance marker in the third when rookie Boone Jenner also notched his first professional goal. Jenner played the puck to Jake Hansen, who tried to thread the puck back to Jenner in front. The puck took a few bounces in front before finding the stick of Jenner at the side of the crease, who one-timed it past Aebischer.
St. John’s came on strong in the final frame, outshooting the Falcons 13-7, and managed to get on the board late in the period on the power play. Spencer Machacek fed O’Dell in front, who snapped a shot past Clemente to break the goose egg.
The IceCaps boarded a bus for Manchester after the game to wrap up the regular season Sunday afternoon against the Monarchs at Verizon Wireless Arena. The Monarchs will be looking to clinch one of the final two playoff spots in the Eastern Conference on the season’s final day. Manchester defeated the Hershey Bears 5-1 Saturday afternoon, moving them into a temporary tie with the Portland Pirates for seventh place. The Syracuse Crunch, in action Saturday night, could leapfrog both teams with a win versus the Connecticut Whale.
Catch all the action with play-by-play broadcaster Brian Rogers at www.stjohnsicecaps.com and on 930AM This Is Newfoundland Labrador. Puck drop is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. with the pregame show beginning at 4:00 p.m. (all times Newfoundland).
D Julian Melchiori made his professional debut for the IceCaps Saturday, wearing No. 8 and finishing with a minus-1 rating….Eric O’Dell’s third period goal was his sixth in three games against the Falcons. O’Dell had a hat trick last Saturday in a 6-3 loss and potted another two goals Sunday in a 4-3 win. The Ottawa native has eight points in his last six games overall….Paul Postma, Derek Meech, Ben Chiarot, Will O’Neill and John Negrin were scratches on the blueline while Marco Rosa, Danny Dries, Max Macenauer and Brock Trotter were absent from the lineup up front….The IceCaps will finally find out who their first round opponent will be on Sunday. Three teams – Manchester, Portland, and Syracuse – are all in the running for the final two playoff spots.