Monarchs hang tough to win
MANCHESTER — The Manchester Monarchs scored three times in four chances in the shootout to claim a 5-4 win over the Providence Bruins in front of 5,917 fans at Verizon Wireless Arena Saturday night.
The Monarchs improved to 13-10-1 and will host Worcester today at 3 p.m. Providence has lost eight in a row and fell to 8-14-3.
Manchester appeared to have the game in hand with a late 4-3 lead, but Providence was awarded a five-on-three power play and Josh Hennessy scored with 1:37 remaining to force overtime. Overall, 13 minor penalties for 26 minutes were whistled in the game.
';When you look at the amount of quality minutes the penalty killers were out there, you';ve got to give them a ton of credit,'; said Monarchs head coach Mark Morris. ';We were dealt a pretty lousy hand coming down the stretch and we battled through it.';
Linden Vey, Jordan Nolan and Marc-Andre Cliche all scored shootout goals for Manchester. On the other side, only Jamie Arniel could beat Monarchs goalie Martin Jones.
';It';s two points,'; Morris said. ';It';s probably not the way we envisioned it happening. It didn';t need to be that way.';
The game was tied 2-2 heading into the third period. Providence took a 3-2 lead at the 5:00 mark when Hennessy took the return pass from a give-and-go with Craig Cunningham and beat Jones five-hole.
The Monarchs tied the game at 7:40 on a power-play goal from Brandon Kozun. Defenseman Nick Deslauriers hit the post with a shot and Kozun banged the rebound home. The assist was the first pro point for the rookie Deslauriers and he wasted little time getting his second one, setting up a David Meckler goal less than a minute later.
Deslauriers'; long short from the point was stopped by goalie Anton Khudobin, but Meckler was in position to pop in the rebound to make it 4-3 at 8:51.
';It';s been a while. Last year (in juniors) I was more of an offensive D,'; Deslauriers said. ';This is my first year and not playing on the power play, I';m not looking for points. I';m just looking to have a good year and help the team. It feels good to have the first two points.';
Manchester appeared to have the game in hand, but a pair of late penalty calls on Cam Paddock and Nolan gave the Bruins 1:05 of five-on-three time to work with and Hennessy scored his tying goal to force the overtime.
Manchester scored the only goal of the first period, taking advantage of a five-on-three power play chance. Defenseman David Kolomatis got the goal, taking a feed from Justin Azevedo and snapping a shot past Khudobin from the right circle at 16:38 for his fourth of the year.
Providence roared back in the second period, striking for two goals in less than three minutes to take a 2-1 lead. Matt Bartkowski sent Jordan Caron in with a breakout pass. Jones stopped Caron';s shot up high on his chest but the rebound went right to Cunningham flying to the net for a chip-in on the power play to tie the game 1-1.
Caron got one of his own at 11:22, netting his first of the year in his third game down in Providence since being re-assigned from Boston. Hennessy passed the puck from behind the net to a wide-open Caron in the slot for a quick rip past Jones to make it 2-1.
Azevedo pulled Manchester back even at 2-2 with his fifth goal of the season at 16:40. With Jones racing off the ice for an extra attacker during a delayed penalty call on Providence, Dwight King found Azevedo in the slot and Azevedo beat Khudobin clean with a nasty wrist shot.