Pasquale carries IceCaps to victory
ST. JOHN’S, NL – Eddie Pasquale turned in his best performance of the season, making 45 saves as the St. John’s IceCaps defeated the Hamilton Bulldogs 3-1 Tuesday night at Mile One Centre.
Pasquale stood on his head all game long, in particular the third period when the home side was outshot 19-5 by the visiting Bulldogs. Overall St. John’s was bested in the shots department 46-19.
Ray Sawada and Derek Meech scored power play goals while Jason Gregoire added an insurance marker in the third period. Meech finished the game with a goal and an assist while Alex Burmistrov notched a pair of helpers. Eric O’Dell picked up an assist in the second period to extend his consecutive point streak to four games, the longest streak by an IceCap this season.
The power play finally showed some signs of life, going 2-for-7 on the night. Entering the game St. John’s had been in an extended drought, scoring just twice in its previous 56 chances.
St. John’s got off to a fast start with the first of two power play markers just 1:17 after the opening puck drop. Meech passed across to Burmistrov at the right point and the Russian forward one-timed a shot that was deftly deflected by Sawada and into the back of the net for a 1-0 lead.
St. John’s converted on another power play midway through the second period. O’Dell won the offensive zone faceoff to Burmistrov at the point, who fed Meech in the middle for a blistering one-timer that beat Hamilton netminder Robert Mayer to make it 2-0 for the home side.
With no more scoring in the second period, Hamilton moved to within one early in the final frame on a power play of its own. Brendan Gallagher picked up the loose puck and stormed out front from the corner but his shot was defended by Zach Redmond. However, the puck caromed off Gallagher in front and ended up in the net behind Pasquale, breaking the shutout and closing the gap to 2-1.
The IceCaps added an insurance marker at 12:28 of the third on Gregoire’s third of the season. Dean Arsene one-timed a cross ice pass from Julian Melchiori that was deflected out of the air by Jason Jaffray and Gregoire tapped in the loose puck in the crease, making it 3-1 St. John’s and putting the game out of reach.
The IceCaps and Bulldogs resume their two-game series Wednesday night at Mile One Centre as St. John’s attempts to win its first home series of the young season.
Listen Live with broadcaster Brian Rogers at www.stjohnsicecaps.com and on 930AM This Is Newfoundland Labrador, or watch online at www.ahllive.com. Puck drop is set for 7:30 p.m. with the pregame show hitting the airwaves at 7:00.
Photos (Jeff Parsons)