Maine’s Trent Grimshaw had two goals and an assist while Noah Kane scored to two goals to lead the Nordiques to a 7 – 3 win over the visiting New Jersey Titans last night. It was the first time this season that the Titans had lost consecutive games.
Grimshaw got the Nordiques on the board just 2:38 into the game to start the scoring. Maine’s Stefan Owens picked up the loose puck along the far side half wall and passed it back to Kylar Fenton who passed it up to Cole Ouellette. Ouellette would send a bounce pass off the boards to Grimshaw who entered the offensive zone. As Grimshaw headed towards the Titans net, the puck was poked off his stick by Mitch Machlitt but Grimshaw picked up the loose puck and skated along for boards and back to the far side point. Grimshaw circled and took a shot that found its way through a maze and past Titans goalie Arseni Sergeev to make it 1 – 0 Nordiques.
Danny Dimon was called for hooking at 5:04 of the period to give the Nordiques the man advantage. As the power play was winding down, Michael Outzen tied the game at one. Brad Zona picked up the rolling puck in his own near side corner and sent a bounce pass off the boards to Cam Gendron. The recently named Top Prospects Tournament participant skated down the ice and into the offensive zone on an odd man rush with Outzen. As Gendron reached the top of the faceoff circle, he passed the puck to Outzen on his left and Outzen one-timed it past Maine’s Wesley Mankowski for his fourteenth goal of the season.
It was the Titans’ league leading thirteenth shorthanded goal of the season and Outzen’s fifth shorthanded point this year which makes him tied for most shorthanded points in the league.
With 4:28 remaining in the opening period, Maine regained the lead on Filip Löfdahl’s third goal of the season. Grimshaw blocked a shot at the near side half wall and passed the puck over to Fenton who immediately passed it up to Owens. As Owens skated towards the Titans goal line, he reversed and sent a bounce pass off the far side boards to Löfdahl and the Stockholm, SWE native took a shot from the point that beat Sergeev to give the Nordiques a 2 – 1 lead.
Kane doubled the Nordiques lead just 3:38 into the second period. Cannon Green picked up the loose puck along the boards and sent it back to Jacob Crespo at the point. The Mt. Holly, NJ native passed it down low to Timmy Kent who was to the left of Sergeev. Kent skated behind the Titans net to the corner, reversed and passed it back to Kane. As Kane circled around the net, he took a low wrist shot that went through Sergeev’s five hole for his sixteenth goal of the season.
Grimshaw scored his second goal of the night with 7:19 left in the middle stanza. Kent picked up the bouncing puck just outside the Titans zone and circled towards the near side boards. Kent passed it over to Grimshaw who skated along the near side boards and into the offensive zone. As Grimshaw reached the faceoff dot, he took a wrist shot that went through Sergeev’s five hole to make it a 4 – 1 game.
Maine made it 5 – 1 with 6:03 left in the second. Crespo picked up the loose puck behind his own net and passed it up along the far side boards to Green who looked to his right and passed it over to Isaiah Fox. As Fox entered the offensive zone, he was knocked off the puck by Tyler Nasca but it was picked up by Kevin Pitts who took a long shot that beat Sergeev for his twelfth goal of the season.
Sergeev was replaced by Patrick Pugliese.
With 2:29 left in the second, Crespo was called for a high-sticking double minor to give the Titans the man advantage. With seventeen second remaining in the period, Ole Andersen made it a 5 – 2 game. Matt Cameron looked to set up the play at the top of the near side faceoff circle and passed it back to Andersen at the point. Andersen passed it to down Outzen at the half wall. Outzen sent a return pass to Andersen and the Hamar, NO native took a bomb that found its way into the back of the net for his fifth goal of the season.
The Nordiques would score two goals in the third, including a penalty shot, while Josef Glamos hit the back of the net to close out the scoring to give Maine the 7 – 3 victory.
Sergeev and Pugliese combined to stop 32 of 37 shots while Mankowski turned aside 30 of 33. Click here for the box score.
“Just overall we didn’t execute nearly enough to win the hockey game” stated Titans head coach Craig Doremus. “I thought Maine competed well and played fast. We struggled with our puck movement and decision making. We need to make some corrections as we prepare for a big game Saturday night” concluded Doremus.
The two teams will meet again tonight with the puck drop scheduled for 7:00PM at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee.