02/16/2014 9:03 AM
The Springfield Falcons (32-15-1-4) defeated the Worcester Sharks by the final score of 4-1 Sunday afternoon at the MassMutual Center behind Michael Chaput’s first professional hat trick.
Chaput found the back of the net three times, registering the first regular-season hat trick by a Falcon since Jonathan Marchessault did it January 15, 2013 at the Manchester Monarchs. It was also the first time a Falcon has recorded a hat trick at home during the regular season since Kyle Wilson February 19, 2011 versus Worcester.
A native of Montreal, Quebec, Chaput scored a power-play first goal at 12:31 of the first period, ripping a wrist shot from the right-wing circle to give the Falcons a 1-0 lead. Chaput then extended the team’s lead to 2-0 at 5:47 of the second period with a slap shot from the slot that beat Worcester netminder Troy Grosenick. The 6-foot-2, 194-pound centerman completed the hat trick with an empty-net tally with 2:17 remaining in regulation. Chaput now leads Springfield with 15 goals this season.
Jonathan Marchessault scored an insurance goal at 14:13 of the third period, extending the Falcons lead to 3-1. For Marchessault, it was his 14th goal and team-leading 40th point of the season.
Springfield netminder Mike McKenna made 29 saves on 30 shots, earning his 14th victory of the season. Grosenick stopped 29 of 32 shots in net for Worcester, falling to 11-7-0 this season.
The Falcons converted on one of three power-play opportunities, while holding the Sharks scoreless on two chances with the man advantage.
The team is back in action Friday, February 21 when it visits the Manchester Monarchs. Springfield returns home to host the Hartford Wolf Pack Saturday, February 22 and the Norfolk Admirals Sunday, February 23. Both home games begin at 7:00 p.m. at the MassMutual Center.