10/23/2012 10:00 PM
Portland, ME – Despite Rob Klinkhammer’s sublime game, including a hat trick and 2 assists, the Portland Pirates gave up the lead to the St. John’s IceCaps on four separate occasions, falling by a score of 8 – 7 in overtime.
Portland got off to a fast start, with two goals in the first four minutes of the first period. The first goal came just 33 seconds into the contest, and Klinkhammer scored off a pass from Jordan Szwarz. The goal was Klinkhammer’s first of the season. Barely 2 minutes later, Klinkhammer’s pass set up the newly acquired Evan Brophey, playing in his third game as Pirate, for his first Portland goal, and the Pirates had a commanding 2 goal lead.
However, the lead didn’t last the length of the period, as the IceCaps turned up the tempo of play. Spencer Machacek scored first for the IceCaps, taking a pass from Ben Maxwell and putting it past Chad Johnson to get within 1. With the Pirates clinging to their 1 goal lead and the seconds ticking down in the first, the IceCaps stuck again, this time on a Jason King goal from Alex Burmistrov and Derek Whitmorewith just 16 seconds before the intermission.
In the second, the scoring continued for both sides, with Klinkhammer adding to his great game for the Pirates, scoring his second goal of the night 3:50 into the period. Klinkhammer’s goal gave Portland the lead again, but it was Chris Brown who gave the Pirates the spark, dropping the gloves against Jordan Machacek after Machacek took exception to Brown’s hit on Hunter Tremblay. During Brown’s 5 minute major, Andy Miele scored his third of the year off the rebound from Chris Conner’s shot, and the Pirates had a two goal cushion again.
Jason Gregoire slashed the lead for the IceCaps just 2 minutes later, scoring on the breakaway after a nice pass from former University of Maine captain Will O’Neill, and St. John’s was within one once again. However, the Pirates would strike back with less than 3 minutes to go in the period. Chris Brown, just out of the box after serving a hooking penalty, took a Klinkhammer pass and put it past Mark Dekanichon the breakaway for his career goal, giving the Pirates a two goal lead into the second intermission.
Once the third period started, however, the game took a wild turn. Ben Maxwell scored powerplay goal just 50 seconds into the third on a powerplay that extended from the second period, and Eric O’Dell scored another powerplay goal less than 40 seconds later to tie up the game. Alexandre Bulduc struck back for the Pirates immediately, scoring 8 seconds later to give Portland the lead again. Bolduc’s third of the year chased Dekanich, and regular starter Eddie Pasquale came on in relief. This Pirates lead, however, was also short lived, as O’Dell scored his second of the night to tie the game 51 seconds later.
Rob Klinkhammer then became the first Pirate to get a hat trick since the 2010-2011 season, putting a Bulduc pass past Pasquale to give the Pirates the lead at 10:16 in the third. Klinkhammer, who finished the night with 5 points had not scored for the Pirates yet in the 2012-2013 season.
However, Klinkhammer’s points couldn’t keep the Pirate’s lead safe. Machacek scored a shorthanded goal, assisted by former Pirates captain Dean Arsene, to tie the game, and the scored remained 7-7 at the end of regulation.
In the overtime period, Alex Burmistrov beat Johnson on the glove side to give St. John’s their first lead of the night and the win. It was Burmastrov’s first goal of the year.
In addition to Klinkhammer’s amazing night, several Pirates put forth strong performances in the losing effort. Alexander Bolduc had three assists to go with his goal (4 points), while Mike Stone had two assists on the night. In addition, Brandon Gormley notched his first profession point with an assist.
The Pirates fall to 1-2-1-0 on the season, while the IceCaps improve to 3-2-0-0. Chad Johnson takes the loss for the Pirates (0-2-1-0), stopping 22 of the 30 shots he faced, while Eddie Pasquale (2-2-0-0) earns the victory in relief of Mark Dekanich. The Pirates put 47 shots on the two St. John’s goaltenders.
The Pirates get back to action tomorrow night when they face the IceCaps in the second game of their two day Canadian road trip. Faceoff is at 6:00 pm, and the game can be heard on 95.5 and 95.9 WPEI in the Portland area, as well as online on the WLOB radio player and AHLLive.
The Pirates get back to home action on Saturday, October 27th when they take on the Binghamton Senators at the Androscoggin Bank Colisée in the 6th annual Pink in the Rink Game, presented by Maine Medical Center Cancer Institute! The Pirates will be wearing special pink jerseys to help raise money for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer! Tickets are available at www.thecolisee.com or by calling 783-2009 x 208.