01/05/2014 4:14 PM
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St. John’s, NL – Andy Miele scored to take sole possession of 15th place in Pirates history with 136 points, but it was not enough as the Pirates fell 3-1 to the St. John’s IceCaps in the first game of their three game series. Mark Visentin made 37 saves in the defeat.
The Pirates were unable to capitalize on 3 power plays in the first period, including 1:04 of 5 on 3 action, but kept the IceCaps off the board as well, killing St. John’s only man advantage.
The IceCaps struck early in the second. After killing a carryover penalty from the first, Adam Lowry’s shot got past Mark Visentin just1:03 into the second, giving St. John’s a 1-0 lead. A possible tying goal by the Pirates was waived off by referee David Banfield 7:57 into the period after incidental content by Darian Dziurzynski on Eddie Pasquale, leading to an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty against Dziurzynski. St. John’s almost got a second goal on a Blair Riley shot, but Visentin made a brilliant save to rob Riley and keep the deficit at one. The second period ended just as the first period did, with the Pirates carrying over a power play into the third but this time trailing by a goal.
The IceCaps struck again in the third with Brenden Kichton slipping the puck past Visentin through the 5 hole goal with 17:09 left in regulation Just under 10 minutes later, Andy Miele struck for the Pirates. Miele’s 14th goal of the year with 7:20 left in regulation cut the deficit to 1 and ended Pasquale’s bid at a shutout. Brandon McMillan picked up the assist on the goal. With the goal, Miele passed Pirates Hall of Famers Martin Gendron and Ryan Mulhern for 15th all time in points with the Pirates with 136, and put him just 2 points back of Hall of Famer Chris Jensen for 14th all time.
However, Miele’s goal was not enough as Jerome Sampson scored on the breakaway just 1:50 later, giving the IceCaps a two goal advantage they would not relinquish. The Pirates penalty kill again shined in the defeat, killing all 6 penalties assessed to the Pirates, but the Pirates’ power play failed to score on 6 opportunities. Mark Visentin drops to 9-11-2 on the year despite his 37 saves.
The Pirates and IceCaps meet in the second game of their three game set tomorrow night. Puck drop is at 6 PM Est and the game can be heard on the Pirates flagship stations WPEI 95.5/95.9 FM as well as WEZR AM 1240 in the Lewiston/Auburn area and WTME AM 780/1450 in Oxford County. The game can also be heard online at portlandpirates.com by clicking “Listen Live” and can be seen live on AHL Live at ahllive.com. The pregame show starts at 5:40 with Jeff Mannix Follow all the action on the Pirates official Facebook page and Twitter account (@PortlandPirates) with the hashtag #PiratesAway.