Sharks Win Another Thriller Over Falcons, 5-4, In A Shootout

Worcester Sharks vs. Springfield Falcons
Mass Mutual Center – Springfield, MA
January 26, 2008
Sharks Win Another Thriller Over Falcons, 5-4, In A Shootout
By: Justin Lafleur                                                                                                                                                       Click Here for the Boxscore
SPRINGFIELD, MA – In a game that had a little bit of everything, the Worcester Sharks defeated the Springfield Falcons, 5-4, in a shootout, on Saturday evening, in front of 6,504 at the Mass Mutual Center in Springfield, MA.
For the second time in five days, the Sharks erased a two-goal deficit and scored an extra attacker goal to tie the score with less than one minute remaining in the third period. In the shootout, the fifth Sharks shooter, Graham Mink, won it after neither team scored.
The teams combined for 66 penalty minutes, as Worcester tied its season high with 40, while the Falcons had 26.
Sharks netminder Thomas Greiss improves to 4-1 in shootouts, stopping 21 of 23 shots in the shootout this season, including 5 for 5 tonight.
Springfield took the 1-0 lead at 7:09 of the first period on its first power play of the game. Brennan Evans picked up an instigating minor after a fight with Troy Bodie, giving the Falcons the man advantage. After a shot from the point, the rebound bounced directly to Stephen Werner to the left of the crease. He stuffed the puck into the net before Greiss could recover for his second goal of the season. Viacheslav Trukhno and Danny Syvret picked up the assists on the play.
The Sharks answered 40 seconds later as Devin Setoguchi tallied his second goal of the season. He carried the puck up ice and took a slap shot that beat Springfield goaltender Jeff Deslauriers five-hole. Tomas Plihal and Derek Joslin picked up the assists on the play.
After a wild first period that included two goals within 40 seconds and 44 combined penalty minutes, shots were 8-7 in favor of Springfield.
The Falcons controlled the beginning of the second period, and finally capitalized at 13:16 on the power play to make it 2-1. Syvret faked a shot from the left face-off circle, opting for a pass to Rob Schremp to the far side. Schremp easily tapped the puck into the empty net for his 11th of the season. Ryan O’Mara picked up the other helper on the play.
Less than 30 seconds later at 13:44, the Falcons made it a two goal advantage. Jonas Almtorp made a pass from the left face-off circle to a wide open Tim Sestito right outside the crease. Greiss got back, but Sestito roofed the puck over his left shoulder.
After Mink was called for interference, the Sharks picked an opportune time for their third shorthanded tally of the season at 15:11. Setoguchi carried the puck up ice and put a backhand shot on goal. Deslauriers made the save, but it bounced to Lukas Kaspar, who took a high shot to cut the lead to 3-2.
Patrick Traverse single-handedly tied the score at three with his sixth goal of the season, and second in as many nights at 6:53 of the third period. He carried the puck up ice from the Sharks’ defensive zone around three Falcons. Right outside the crease, he backhanded a shot that found the top right corner of the goal to complete the highlight-reel sequence.
The Falcons thought they took the lead for good at 18:46 of the third period. After Josh Prudden took a holding the stick penalty, Allan Rourke took a shot from the left point. Werner was staked in front of Greiss and tipped the rising puck over Greiss’ left shoulder for the 4-3 lead. Marc Pouliot tallied the other assist on the goal
The Sharks followed by pulling Greiss and coming up with their second extra-attacker goal of the season, both in the last five days against the Falcons. Marc-Edouard Vlasic took a shot from the right point. It went wide, but bounced hard off the boards right to Tom Cavanagh, who fired the puck into the open net before Deslauriers could recover. Tom Walsh also picked up an assist on the play. For Vlasic, it was his second helper of the game, and second-career AHL assist.
After a scoreless overtime period, the game went to a shootout. After Nine straight misses, the game was in Mink’s hands. He skated up ice and beat Deslauriers to the right side of the net for the thrilling victory.
The Sharks now enjoy five days off for the All-Star Break. Center Mike Iggulden will suit up for Team Canada in Binghamton, NY, in a 7 p.m. face-off on Monday.
Worcester returns to action on Friday as they travel to Philadelphia to face the Phantoms.  The Sharks will return to the DCU Center to face the Manchester Monarchs on Saturday, February 2 at 7:05 p.m. with the first 3,000 fans in attendance receiving a hand-signed Graham Mink Collector’s Card. Fans are encouraged to come to the arena early, as Saint John’s and Saint Peter-Marian will square off in the First Annual High School Hockey Classic with a 4:00 p.m. contest prior to the Sharks vs. the Monarchs.
For more information on these and other promotions, or to purchase tickets, call the Sharks offices at 508-929-0500 or check out the new All games can be heard live on 580 WTAG, as well as online through B2 Networks, by following the link on the Sharks website at
NOTES: Sharks goaltender Thomas Greiss saw his first action with Worcester on since January 5. Since then, he did make his NHL debut on January 13 against the Anaheim Ducks … 2007 NHL All-Rookie selection Marc-Edouard Vlassic played in his first-career AHL game with Worcester, recording a pair of assists … With Vlassic in the lineup, Brad Staubitz suited up as the seventh defenseman and saw time at forward … Brennan Evans and Springfield’s Troy Bodie had a spirited fight at 5:27 of the first period. They each got in numerous shots before running out of gas as the linesmen broke them up. Evans picked up an additional instigating minor on the play … Bodie had his second fight of the first period at 12:51, this time against Sharks captain Graham Mink. After Mink received an elbowing penalty, the two went at it, wrestling to the ice while continuing to get shots in … The second period included numerous scuffles without any fighting majors handed out. At 16:40, Mink, Tim Sestito, and Springfield goaltender Jeff Deslauriers went at it, all receiving two minute minors. At 19:45, Deslauriers received his second roughing minor in 3:05, as two separate scuffles broke out of the scrum. As time expired in the second period, the linesmen needed to separate the two teams as they headed into the locker room …The final attendance figure was 6,504, a season-high for the Falcons. It was only 231 shy of the Springfield franchise record, 1/25/03 vs. Manchester … Greiss had 24 saves on 28 shots for the Sharks while Deslauriers stopped 16 of 20 for Springfield …  Power plays: Worcester: 0 for 5, Springfield 3 for 7 … Three stars: 1. WOR Devin Setoguchi 2. SPR Stephen Werner 3. SPR Danny Syvret
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