IceCaps set to host Sound Tigers
Caption: Carl Klingberg take his team-leading four goals into this weekend’s series with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers at Mile One. Jeff Parsons Photography
Coming off their first home win of the season, the St. John’s IceCaps welcome the Bridgeport Sound Tigers to Mile One Centre for two games this weekend.
A night after dropping a 4-0 decision in their home opener, the IceCaps found the back of the net often and picked up their third win in four games this season, a 6-2 victory over the Hamilton Bulldogs. Carl Klingberg recorded the first hat trick in team history and Corner Brook native Jason King finished the night with a goal and an assist. John Albert had three assists, and goaltender Peter Mannino stopped 20 of 22 shots for his second win in as many games.
On Friday, it was Hamilton goaltender Nathan Lawson who stole the show. Lawson stopped all 40 shots he faced for his first shutout of the season. His performance, however, was not enough to overshadow what was a joyous and exciting night for hockey fans in Newfoundland and Labrador.
The visiting Sound Tigers lost two of three last weekend, dropping both contests against division foe Adirondack. Sunday’s 5-1 loss saw forward Micheal Haley and defenceman Matt Donovan receive match penalties for illegal hits to the head. Haley will miss both games in St. John’s while Donovan will be forced to sit out Friday’s match. Winger Justin DiBenedetto is tied for the league lead in goals after potting his fifth in Saturday night’s 6-3 win over Connecticut.
Fans will catch a glimpse of several impressive rookies this weekend. Klingberg, a second round draft pick of the Atlanta Thrashers in 2009, is tied with Norfolk’s Carter Ashton and Adirondack’s Brayden Schenn for the rookie goal scoring lead with four. The 20-year-old Swede has made a significant impact on the score sheet through four games and is quickly turning into a fan favourite. The Sound Tigers feature former Canadian Junior team member Casey Cizikas, who has assisted on four goals in five games and is a +1 on a team that has given up six more goals than it has scored. Cizikas has teamed with Justin DiBenedetto to form a dangerous and dynamic scoring punch.
Through four games the IceCaps sit atop the Atlantic Division with a 3-1-0-0 record (six points) and have allowed just seven goals. At 2-3-0-0 (four points), the Sound Tigers sit fourth in the Northeast Division and have allowed the second most goals (21) in the AHL through the first two weeks of the season.
This weekend’s two game series marks the first meeting between the two teams, and the first of four on the season.
Tune into 930 AM This is Newfoundland Labrador to hear Brian Rogers call the game at 7:35 both nights. Catch the pre-game show at 7:05. To hear the game on the web, visit www.stjohnsicecaps.com.