Penguins Sweep Weekend with OT Win over IceCaps
Kolarik gets second hat trick of season and overtime game-winner
ST. JOHN’S, Newfoundland –
Chad Kolarik registered his second hat trick of the season – including the game-winner in overtime – as the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins defeated the St. John’s, 5-4, to sweep the two-game weekend series at Mile One Centre. The win was Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s fifth in a row on the road and seventh straight overall.
The Penguins and IceCaps were in a 3-3 deadlock going into the third period until St. John’s took it second lead of the game at 11:54. During a 3-on-2 rush into the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton zone, it was Ben Maxwell feeding an open Will O’Neill on the left wing for the go-ahead tally.
Kolarik set up his overtime heroics by tying the game, 4-4, with 5:17 left in regulation. After Joey Mormina had his point shot blocked, Kolarik poked the puck away from the St. John’s defender and pulled loose in the slot for a wrister past the blocker of IceCaps goalie Eddie Pasquale.
In the extra period, Kolarik took matters into his own hands with a coast-to-coast rush that saw him weave through the IceCaps defense and snap a shot to the left side of the net for his 31st goal of the year.
With the score tied, 1-1, heading into the second period, Dominik Uher continued his monstrous weekend, gathering a rebound chance in front and lifting a backhander to the top of the net at 2:43 for his third goal in two games.
St. John’s needed less than two minutes to respond as defenseman Dean Arsene sent a low wrist shot between the hashmarks that was tipped over the glove of Brad Thiessen by Ray Sawada.
Julian Melchiori then gave the IceCaps their first lead of the contest, making the score, 3-2, at 9:04 of the second, but 23 seconds later, Trevor Smith converted on a breakaway to tie the score once again.
Kolarik netted his first of the night on the power play in the opening period. John Lunden’s shorthanded goal with 1.7 seconds left in the first evened the game at one.
Thiessen earned his 16th win of the season with 19 saves on 23 shots. Pasquale made 29 stops for St. John’s
The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins return home to face the Worcester Sharks on Friday, Apr. 19 at 7:05PM. The first 5,000 fans in attendance will receive a Penguins Water Bottle, courtesy of Geisinger Health Systems. Tune in on 102.3 The Mountain or AHLLive.com.
– penguins –