The visiting Titans scored three third period goals en route to a 5 – 3 win over the Maine Nordiques last night in a see-saw game. The win gave the second place Titans a two-point lead over the third place Nordiques in the East Division standings.
Michael Young gave the Titans a 1 – 0 lead at 8:29 into the opening period. Brendan Dumas brought the puck into the offensive zone along the near side boards and as he reached the bottom of the faceoff dot, he passed the biscuit to Sylas Oberting. As Oberting went behind the Nordiques net, he started to circle, and he made a centering pass out front to Young who backhanded the puck up and over Maine’s goaltender Thomas Heaney for Young’s team high 24th goal of the season and his 100th NAHL career point.
Dumas’ assist also was his 100th NAHL career point.
With seventeen seconds remaining in the first, Maine’s Laurent Trepanier tied the game from the slot after receiving a pass from veteran Nicholas Bernardo from the bottom of the far side faceoff circle. With a Titans defender draped on him, Trepanier was able to redirect the biscuit through Zak Brice’s five hole for Trepanier’s thirteenth goal of the season.
Maine took a 2 – 1 lead just 2:46 into the middle stanza went Aidan Coupe stripped Brian Robertson of the puck just inside the Titans blueline and walked in all alone on Brice and deked around the fallen netminder and lifted into the back of the net for Coupe’s fourteenth goal of the year.
Joe Harney tied the game just a minute and a half later. After Reece Brednich won the draw deep inside the offensive zone, the puck was picked up by Ryan Novo who sent it back to Harney at the near side point. Harney took a wrist shot that went through a maze and past Heaney and into the net for Harney’s fifth goal of the season.
The Titans regained the lead at 5:29 into the third period. Similar to the Titans second goal, Brednich won the draw deep inside the Nordiques zone. As the puck went to the near side corner, Brednich sent the biscuit back to Marcus Sang at the point, and Sang took a shot on that was redirected by Oberting out front and past Heaney for the defenseman’s second goal of the season.
The Nordiques tied the game at three at 7:29 of the third when Kim Hilmersson scored on a wraparound for his fourth goal of the season.
The Titans took the lead for good when Anthony Calafiore scored with 4:06 remaining in the game to make it 4 – 3. Applying heavy pressure inside the Nordiques zone, Owen Luik took a shot from the near side point that went wide of the net but was picked up by Tyler Sanborn along the far side half wall. As Sanborn started to skate towards the corner, he made a centering pass out front that was one-timed by Calafiore and past Heaney for the team captain’s ninetheeth goal of the season. It was the Staten Island, NY native’s 62nd career goal and ties him with Kyle Jeffers with the most goals in franchise history.
Eric Charpentier scored twenty-two seconds later to put the game out of reach when he kept the puck in the zone at the top of near side point and went towards the net. As he cut across the slot, he backhanded the puck short side past Heaney to make it 5 – 3.
Brice stopped 23 of 26 shots while Heaney turned aside 27 of 32. Click here for the complete box score.
Game two of this critical two-game series is tonight at 7:00PM.