SEA DOGS END LOSING SKID WITH WIN OVER ISLANDERS
SAINT JOHN – Ostap Safin scored twice and Alex D’Orio made 42 saves to lead the Saint John Sea Dogs to a 5-3 victory over the Charlottetown Islanders, Wednesday at Harbour Station.
The win snapped a ten-game losing skid for the Sea Dogs.
Luke Wilson, Alexis Girard and Aiden MacIntosh also scored for Saint John (14-38-9-2) while Anthony Boucher added two assists.
Nikita Alexandrov, Taylor Egan and Derek Gentile responded for Charlottetown (34-23-6-0).
A scoring summary is available HERE.
The Islanders found the net on the first shot of the game just 37 seconds in.
Gentile caused a turnover inside the Sea Dogs’ blueline and chased down a loose puck to the left wing side of the goal. He knifed a pass to the front of the crease where Alexandrov snapped the puck through the legs of D’Orio.
Safin tied the game with five minutes remaining in the first.
The Czech forward, who signed an entry-level contract with the Edmonton Oilers this week, was parked to the right side of the net when a shot from the left point by Alexis Girard went off the glove of goalie Matthew Welsh. Safin pounded the rebound in an open net.
Charlottetown regained the lead seven minutes into the second period when a shot from the right point by Egan went off the right arm of D’Orio. The goaltender then inadvertently knocked the puck into his own net.
But Saint John responded with a power play goal four minutes later.
Safin snuck into the right circle, took a pass in the slot and beat Welsh with a low wrist shot to tie the game at 2-2. The second goal gave him 26 on the season, which ties Tomas Jurco’s record for goals by a rookie Sea Dog set in the 2009-10 season.
Wilson gave the Sea Dogs their first lead more than two minutes after that.
The rookie forward came out of the penalty box as Saint John cleared the puck out of their zone, creating a 2-on-1. Wilson carried the puck down the right wing and rifled a wrister over the glove of Welsh.
Another power play goal made it a 4-2 game with two minutes left in the second period.
Girard received a short pass in the high slot, took a stride toward the net and snapped a shot along the ice that went between Welsh’s legs.
Charlottetown cut its deficit to one midway through the third when Gentile whistled a wrist shot from the right circle over the D’Orio’s glove for a shorthanded goal.
MacIntosh restored the two-goal lead 65 seconds later, grabbing a loose puck in the bottom of the right circle and ripping a wrist shot over the glove of Welsh.
The Islanders got a power play with four minutes remaining, and pulled Welsh a short time later to create a 6-on-4 opportunity, but could not get any closer on the scoreboard.
D’Orio was named second star in a 42-save victory. Welsh took the loss with 19 stops.
Safin earned first star with his two goals. Gentile’s goal and assist made him third star. Paid attendance was 5,126.
The Sea Dogs’ next game is Friday, March 9th, at 7 p.m. against the Acadie-Bathurst Titan at Harbour Station. Tickets are available at the Harbour Station Box Office and online.