Adirondack Thunder (13-15-4-5) at Newfoundland Growlers (23-10-0-0)
Friday, January 3rd – Mile One Centre – St. John’s, NL
|0 - 1||1||1st||NFL||4:22||J. Brazeau (13)||M. Kapla|
|0 - 2||2||1st||NFL||5:17||A. Luchuk (12)||G. Estephan, E. Neugold|
|1 - 2||3||1st||ADK||19:42||C. Pierro-Zabotel (17)||A. Tonge, J. Linhart||PP|
|2 - 2||4||3rd||ADK||15:14||N. Popugaev (4)||B. Thompson|
|2 - 3||5||OT||NFL||2:03||G. Estephan (13)||E. Neugold, A. Luchuk|
The Newfoundland Growlers kicked off the 2020 portion of their season by extending their home winning streak to 13 games in a greasy 3-2 overtime win against the Adirondack Thunder Friday night at Mile One Centre.
Justin Brazeau opened the scoring 4:22 into the game beating Eamon McAdam shortside for a 1-0 Growlers lead, and just 55 seconds later Aaron Luchuk took a beautiful cross-crease pass from Giorgio Estephan and fired one home for an early 2-0 lead. The Thunder struck with just 18 seconds remaining in the first on the powerplay when Casey Pierro-Zabotel roofed a backhander behind Parker Gahagen to cut the Growlers lead to 2-1 after 20 minutes of play.
A scoreless second period saw the Growlers get outshot by the Thunder 12-5, but Parker Gahagen was rock solid between the pipes, including a diving save with two minutes to play in the middle frame to preserve the 2-1 score after 40.
The Thunder kept the pressure rolling into the third period, and it paid off when Nikita Popugaev deflected a point-shot five-hole on Gahagen to tie the game at 2-2 with 4:46 remaining in the third period.
Giorgio Estephan played the role of hero 2:03 into overtime completely undressing Eamon McAdam and toe-dragging it into the back of the net for a 3-2 victory.
- Michael Kapla left the game in the second period and did not return
- Aaron Luchuk snapped his eight-game goalless drought
- The three stars were 3- N. Popugaev (ADK), 2 – G. Estephan (NFL) and 1 – P. Gahagen (NFL)
The Newfoundland Growlers square off with the Adirondack Thunder, ECHL affiliate of the New Jersey Devils again Saturday night before hitting the road for a three-game trip. Puck drop is 7 p.m. Tickets are available at the Mile One Centre Box Office and online at mileonecentre.com.