St. John’s, Newfoundland, November 13, 2011 – Eric O’Dell’s goal with 3:01 left in the third period gave the St. John’s IceCaps a 4-3 win over the Connecticut Whale Sunday afternoon at Mile One Centre, and a sweep of a two-game series between the two teams.

CT WhaleSt. John’s had knocked off the Whale by an 8-4 the night before on Mile On Centre Ice.

O’Dell buried a centering pass from former Hartford Wolf Pack Garth Murray on the winning goal, after Murray won a puck battle with Wade Redden in the corner of the Whale zone to goaltender Chad Johnson’s left.

Jason King also had two goals for the victorious IceCaps, and defenseman Kyle Bushee had a goal and an assist.  John Mitchell, Tommy Grant and Carl Hagelin scored the Whale’s goals, all in the first period, and Blake Parlett had three assists.

The Whale had leads of 2-0 and 3-1 in the first, but St. John’s would score the last three goals of the game.

“We played more of a full game today (than the previous night), I thought,” Parlett said.  “We had the lead again today, but we just kept giving it (goals) to them.  I thought we did a good job for most of today of playing in their zone, and we just had a couple of breakdowns in our zone that led to their goals.”

After the Whale and IceCaps combined for six goals in the first period of Saturday night’s game, the two sides put five on the board in the first on Sunday.

The Whale got the first two, starting at 7:14, when Mitchell increased his Whale team-leading goal total to seven with his third in the two games in Newfoundland.  With two seconds left on a Whale power play, Mitchell snapped a shot from the right side of the slot past IceCaps goaltender Peter Mannino, who was making his first appearance since returning from a recall stint with the Winnipeg Jets.

Grant made it a 2-0 lead for the Whale at 12:20, with his second goal of his rookie season.  After St. John’s’ Marco Rosa turned the puck over to Parlett in neutral ice, Grant took Parlett’s pass and fired a shot off right wing past Mannino on the stick side.

St. John’s got on the board on a power play 2:20 later, with Bushee scoring only four seconds before Stu Bickel was to step out of the penalty box after serving a hooking minor.  Johnson (23 saves) stopped a shot from the left side by Spencer Machacek, but the rebound came right to Bushee at the right side of the goalmouth, and Bushee had most of the net to shoot at for his first AHL goal of the year.

Connecticut answered that one only 38 seconds later at 15:18, with Hagelin’s sixth goal of the season and third in the last three games.  The Swedish-born rookie paid a price for the goal, as Parlett’s shot from the right-wing side hit Hagelin in the face before getting by Mannino.  Hagelin had to leave the game for repairs but would return for the second period.

Mannino would shut the door on the Whale for the rest of the game after Hagelin’s goal, making a total of 35 saves in the game, and King started St. John’s’ comeback during a four-on-four situation, with his first goal of the game 49.2 seconds before intermission.  King beat his check down the left side, and Rosa found him with a cross-slot feed for a shot past Johnson’s stick side.

“We had a pretty successful first period,” Parlett said.  “We had a power-play goal there, and then we just struggled a bit on the power play (finishing 1/7) for the rest of the game.  I still thought we did a good job moving the puck around, but we just didn’t have the right bounce today late in the game.”

King’s second goal tied the game at three at 3:19 of the second period, as King took a feed from Aaron Gagnon and put a shot past Johnson’s catching glove and into the top corner.  That tie lasted until O’Dell’s late goal in the third, and Mannino held the Whale off on a power play opportunity, resulting from a cross-checking penalty to Zach Redmond, shortly after the IceCaps took the lead.

The Whale are now 0-3-0-0 on the year against the IceCaps, who lead the AHL with 25 points (11-2-3-0) and have won six straight.  The Whale are now 7-4-1-2 on the year, and 1-3-1-0 in their last five games.

The Whale are now off until this Friday night, November 18, when they return to the XL Center for a GEICO Connecticut Cup game against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers at 7:00.  In celebration of Veterans Day, the Whale is proud to offer a buy-one-get-one-free discount on Lower Level tickets for that game to any military personnel who present a military/veteran ID at the Public Power Ticket Office at the XL Center.

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Connecticut Whale 3 at St. John’s IceCaps 4
Sunday, November 13, 2011 – Mile One Centre

Connecticut 3 0 0 – 3
St. John’s 2 1 1 – 4

1st Period-1, Connecticut, Mitchell 7 (Erixon, Parlett), 7:14 (PP). 2, Connecticut, Grant 2 (Parlett), 12:20. 3, St. John’s, Bushee 1 (Machacek, Redmond), 14:40 (PP). 4, Connecticut, Hagelin 6 (Parlett, Valentenko), 15:18. 5, St. John’s, King 6 (Rosa), 19:10. Penalties-Redden Ct (hooking), 2:03; Nightingale Ct (roughing), 2:40; King Stj (roughing), 2:40; Murray Stj (cross-checking), 5:16; Bickel Ct (tripping), 12:44; Bickel Ct (roughing), 17:40; Ramsey Stj (roughing), 17:40.

2nd Period-6, St. John’s, King 7 (Gagnon, Bushee), 3:19. Penalties-Ramsey Stj (tripping), 0:19; Murray Stj (hooking), 5:43; Newbury Ct (slashing), 7:13; Erixon Ct (high-sticking), 10:25; Bushee Stj (cross-checking), 15:04.

3rd Period-7, St. John’s, O’Dell 2 (Murray, Wiebe), 16:59. Penalties-Parlett Ct (interference), 0:48; Redmond Stj (slashing), 4:43; Audy-Marchessault Ct (tripping), 5:20; Bickel Ct (cross-checking), 7:26; Redmond Stj (cross-checking), 17:45; Mannino Stj (interference), 19:56.

Shots on Goal-Connecticut 12-13-13-38. St. John’s 12-4-11-27.
Power Play Opportunities-Connecticut 1 / 7; St. John’s 1 / 7.
Goalies-Connecticut, Johnson 3-3-2 (27 shots-23 saves). St. John’s, Mannino 3-2-0 (38 shots-35 saves).
Referees-Jean Hebert (43).
Linesmen-Joe Maynard (15), Todd Horwood (56).