O'Marra's OT Goal Lifts Falcons To 3-2 Win
Ryan O'Marra scored the game winner at 3:49 of overtime and Devan Dubnyk made 36 saves as the Springfield Falcons won a thriller over the Bridgeport Sound Tigers by a score of 3-2 in front of 3,477 fans at the MassMutual Center on Friday night. The Falcons will next head to Albany on Saturday to battle the River Rats starting at 5 pm.
"I was coming across parallel to the net and what I was thinking was going cross-body," O'Marra said after the game. "Hopefully Colin [McDonald] was in front of the net for the screen which he was."
Springfield grabbed the early lead at 1:31 of the first period when Rob Hisey took a turnover in the Tigers zone behind the net and dropped it to Slava Trukhno on the near post who snapped his 7th goal of the year past Martin Biron. The Falcons increased their lead to two on the power-play when Colton Fretter ripped a shot just under the cross bar off a face-off to Biron's left.
The Sound Tigers cut the lead in half when Tyler Haskins tipped a floater from the point past Dubnyk. Biron helped the Tigers kill off a 5-on-3 disadvantage more than half-way through the period as he turned away a total of 12 shots in the opening frame. Dubnyk stopped a prime power-play chance for Bridgeport late in the period when he made a chest-save with Bridgeport players bearing down on him looking for the rebound.
Dubnyk made his first start since January 9 against the Tigers after he was reassigned by Edmonton on Thursday. While with the Oilers, Dubnyk appeared in 9 games with a 4.17 goals against average. Dubnyk had appeared in 23 games for the Falcons this season going 10-12-1-0 with a 2.99 goals against average and .917 save percentage entering the night.
"Devan is a calming influence," said Coach Rob Daum. "Our team appreciates the fact that they know that when he's in the line-up he's going to give us the type of game like he did tonight."
The Tigers began the 2nd period with a power-play, but the Falcons managed to kill it off. Dubnyk continued his solid play flashing the leather early on and continuing to turn away any chances for the Tigers. The Falcons had their chances earning a pair of power-plays, but Biron, like Dubnyk, turned away any scoring chances the Falcons had while on the man advantage.
Biron, who made his first start of the season for the Sound Tigers, made 39 saves after he was reassigned by Bridgeport's National Hockey League affiliate the New York Islanders on Wednesday for a conditioning assignment. He had not played in the American Hockey League since 2000-2001 when he went 3-1 for the Rochester Americans. Biron is 2-11 in his first season with the Islanders. He played 8 seasons for Buffalo and then 3 for Philadelphia before joining New York.
The Falcons best chance of the 2nd period was by Trukhno, but his one-timer was tipped and Biron made the easy save. With the game still at 2-1, the Tigers crashed the net in the final minute of the period, but Dubnyk's stellar play and a diving save by a stick-less Theo Peckham preserved the Falcon lead for the third period.
Trevor Smith tied the game late in the third period when he buried his 15th goal of the season on a rebound at 16:03. As overtime loomed, the Falcons had a power-play chance after the Tigers were called for too many men on the ice. The Falcons extended the man advantage to a 14-second 5-on-3, but were unable to score in regulation.
Bridgeport began the overtime session with 1:22 left on Jon Gleed's minor penalty for holding, but the Falcons could not capitalize. Springfield received another man advantage moments after the first one expired. The Falcons still could not get the game-winner. But with both teams back to full strength, O'Marra took a shot that saw it's way past a screened Biron to give the Falcons the win.
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American Hockey League Stories from February 5, 2010
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