Sharks drop 3-1 affair in Manchester

Verizon Wireless Arena
December 18, 2011
Meeting 6-of-12 vs. the Monarchs
Sharks are 1-3-1-1 vs. the Monarchs
Sharks drop 3-1 affair in Manchester
Worcester finishes seven game road trip 5-1-0-1.
MANCHESTER, NH –Tommy Wingels extended his point streak to six games with an assist on the only Worcester goal as the Sharks fell 3-1 to the Manchester Monarchs at Verizon Wireless Arena on Sunday afternoon. Worcester finished with a 5-1-0-1 on their season long seven game road trip as the Sharks return home to host the Falcons on Wednesday.
Antero Niittymaki made 25 saves in his second start on a conditioning assignment from the San Jose Sharks for Worcester as the Sharks five game winning streak came to an end and their point streak snapped at eight straight games with the loss. Jack Combs extended his point streak to three games (3-2-5) with the only score for Worcester.
Brandon Kozun (8th) gave the Monarchs a quick 1-0 lead at 2:01 of the first period as he tipped home a drive from the blue line by Dwight King. 40 seconds later, Jimmy Bonneau (8th FM) and Justin Johnson (8th FM) fought for the third time this season, with a long battle at center ice. On the next faceoff, Curt Gogol (9th FM) brawled with Chris Cloud (1st FM) at 2:44. The Sharks would tie the score at 1-1 after Jack Combs (3rd) skated out from the left corner and slipped the puck past the right skate of Jeff Zatkoff and inside the post at 7:23. The goal was the third in as many games for Combs and was assisted by Tommy Wingels and Mike Moore.   Worcester outshot Manchester 15-9 in the first period.
In the second period, Dwight King (4th) finished a terrific rush into the Sharks zone after he took a cross the crease pass from Brandon Kozun and slid it into the net past Niittymaki at 5:59 to give Manchester the 2-1 advantage. Worcester fired 14 more shots on goal in the middle frame, but Jeff Zatkoff was equal to the task. Worcester trailed 2-1 after 40 minutes.
Linden Vey (7th) scored an insurance goal in the third period at 8:47, finishing off a 2-on-1 rush down low to give Manchester a 3-1 lead. Antero Niittymaki made several nice stops to keep the score close but the Sharks could not counter any more offense on Jeff Zatkoff as the Sharks win streak came to an end at five games with a 3-1 loss.
Notes: FIVE GUYS BURGERS Three Stars: 3rd Star: Jeff Zatkoff (40 saves, W) 2nd star:  Brandon Kozun (1-1-2) 1st star: Dwight King (1-1-2)… Final shots were 41-28 in favor of Worcester… Jeff Zatkoff made 40 saves on 41 shots for Manchester; Antero Niittymaki made 25 saves on 28 shots for Worcester…Worcester went 0-for-3 on the power play while Manchester went 0-for-2…Cam MacIntyre (inj), Mike Connolly (inj), Sean Sullivan (inj), Ben Guite (inj), Brian O’Hanley (scr), and Tyson Sexsmith (scr) did not dress for Worcester… with the two fights; Worcester now has 43 through 26 games this season, the most in the AHL…tonight’s game marked the 54th meeting all-time between the Sharks and Monarchs, Worcester is 26-24-4 all-time vs. their Atlantic Division Rivals…14 of the 43 fighting majors this season for Worcester has occurred against the Monarchs…  Tommy Wingels (7-3-10) has a six game point streak with an assist. Brandon Mashinter returned to the lineup after missing the last 11 games due to injury… Matt Irwin played for Worcester as he was loaned from San Jose the day before.
The Sharks return home to the DCU Center with a 7pm start on Wednesday night vs. the Springfield Falcons.
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