The Bridgeport Sound Tigers dropped an overtime game to the St. John’s IceCaps Saturday night and fell by a final score of 3-2. Scooter Vaughan and Aaron Ness each scored in the first period for the Sound Tigers, but the IceCaps tied the score in the second and won the game with less than a minute to play in overtime. Kevin Poulin faced 37 shots in the game and made 34 saves.
The Sound Tigers opened the scoring at the 7:00 mark as Vaughan converted on the team’s first power play of the game. Vaughan, who was playing the point on the man advantage for the first time since he began playing full-time as a forward, took a pass at center point from Alan Quine. Vaughan wound up for a one-timer and blasted it past IceCaps goaltender Michael Hutchison to give the Sound Tigers a 1-0 lead.
The IceCaps tied the score less than six minutes later as Eric O’Dell found the back of the net. Poulin made a stop in close on a shot from Jason Jaffray, but the puck stayed loose out in front. O’Dell crashed the net and was able to get the puck over Poulin’s shoulder to make it a 1-1 game.
Later in the period, Johan Sundstrom was called for a high sticking double-minor, but not only did the Sound Tigers kill it off, they converted shorthanded to regain the lead. Chris Langkow broke into the zone and found Ness trailing the play in the slot. Ness snapped a quick shot that Hutchison was unable to handle, which gave the Sound Tigers a 2-1 lead.
The IceCaps tied the score early in the second period as they converted on a two-man advantage. The IceCaps won an offensive-zone faceoff back to the point, and Jaffray sent the puck across to Andrew Gordon. Gordon blasted a slapshot from the top of the left circle past Poulin and tied the score at two.
The IceCaps got another shot later in the second period when Kyle MacKinnon drew a penalty shot. He tried to get a backhand past Poulin, but the netminder shut the door and the game remained tied at two.
It stayed a 2-2 game throughout the third period, as well, though Poulin may have been the best player on the ice in the final 20 minutes for either team. The Sound Tigers were outshot 11-2 in the third, but Poulin stood tall and kept the score tied at two.
The game went to overtime, but a giveaway late by the Sound Tigers led to the game-winning goal. It created a two-on-one for the IceCaps the other way, and Patrice Cormier fed Adam Lowry, who walked in on goal and beat Poulin with the IceCaps’ 37th shot on goal of the game.
The Sound Tigers travel to Manchester for a game Friday against the Monarchs. They return home to face the Worcester Sharks Saturday night and the Adirondack Phantoms Sunday afternoon.
3rd star: Jason Jaffray (STJ)
2nd star: Kevin Poulin (BST)
1st star: Andrew Gordon (STJ)
Hard Luck Loser: Though Kevin Poulin is winless in his first four Sound Tigers starts this season, he has posted a 2.48 GAA and a .924 save percentage.
Debuts: Matt Mangene played in his first Sound Tigers game Saturday and skated on a line with Justin Johnson and Joey Martin.
Power Play: Scooter Vaughan’s power play goal snapped a string of 18 straight man-advantage opportnuties without a goal.