FALCONS LOSE TO PIRATES IN PORTLAND 5-2March 21, 2008 - The Springfield Falcons lost to the Portland Pirates 5-2 on Friday night at the Cumberland County Civic Center in Portland, Maine. With Manchester idle on Friday, the Falcons continue to have a three point lead on the fourth and final playoff spot in the Atlantic Division.
The night started well for the Falcons as they opened the scoring at 9:55 of the first period when Jacob Micflikier scored on the power play, his first goal of the year.
Following Micflikier's marker, the Pirates scored three unanswered goals in the opening 20 minutes as Tyler Bouck evened the score at 11:07 of the opening frame on the man advantage. Portland took a 2-1 lead at 13:22 of the first period when Andrew Ebbett tallied his 16th goal of the year, followed by Jason King's 27th marker of the campaign at 16:39 of the opening period.
In the second period, Portland expanded their lead to 4-1 when Bruno St. Jacques converted on the power play at 6:48.
Springfield cut their deficit to 4-2 at 9:31 of the third period when Liam Reddox tallied his 14th marker of the campaign, but Ebbett added his second marker of the contest at 18:33 of the final frame into an empty net capping off the Portland win.
Stephane Goulet was injured in the second period after being hit from behind by Portland's Mike Hoffman. Goulet didn't return in the third period and Hoffman could have received a major penalty for boarding, but only received a minor penalty.
After the game, there was a scrum of players that came together after the final buzzer, but no punches were thrown and cooler heads prevailed.
The Falcons were 1-9 on the power play, while the Pirates were 3-7 on the man advantage.
The Falcons Lineup For Friday's Game:
Potulny - Reddox - Schremp
Trukhno - Simon - Goulet
Almtorp - Garlock - Sestito
Micflikier - Werner
Peckham - Gabinet
Kemp - Young
Wild - Farynuk
FALCONS SCRATCHES - T.J. Reynolds (Injured), Troy Bodie (Injured), Sebastien Bisaillon (Injured), Ryan O'Marra (Injured), Allan Rourke (Injured), Jean-Francois Jacques (Injured), Kenny Smith (Healthy), Colin McDonald (Healthy), Rick Berry (Injured)
The Springfield Falcons headed to Portland on Thursday to prepare for their match-up with the Pirates on Friday night at the Cumberland County Civic Center. The Falcons received a must needed win on Wednesday night at the MassMutual Center when they defeated the Manchester Monarchs 4-3 taking a three point lead for the fourth and final playoff spot within the Atlantic Division.
The Falcons will play three games in three days this weekend starting in Portland, followed by a home game against the Hartford Wolf Pack on Saturday and ending with an Easter Sunday battle with the Monarchs in Manchester. The win on Wednesday night was nice, but the Falcons realize that they need to build on the momentum from their latest win to carry them through an important weekend of hockey.
"Our win against Manchester was rewarding, but we know we have a lot of work still to do starting in Portland," said Falcons head coach Kelly Buchberger. "It's going to be a battle, we know that and we are prepared to work hard and fight for that final playoff spot."
The Falcons last visit to Portland was back in December when they lost back-to-back games the weekend of December 15-16. The last three meetings have occurred in Springfield with the Falcons beating the Pirates 4-2 in the most recent match-up on March 1. For the season series, the Falcons are 5-1-1-1 against the Pirates. This season series has been so evenly matched, six of the eight games have been decided by one goal and all of the contests have been decided by two goals or less.
FALCONS TEAM NOTES
The Falcons announced they released Tommy Goebel from his ATO contract on Thursday.
The Falcons practiced at the MassMutual Center on Thursday before they boarded their team bus to Portland on Thursday afternoon.
The Falcons will practice at the Cumberland County Civic Center on Friday morning.
The Falcons have 31 wins this season, the most amount of wins they have recorded since the 2002-03 campaign.
Springfield is only eight points shy of their highest point total in a season since the 1998-99 campaign.