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North Division Semifinals Series Preview


The Maine Mariners playoff hopes were looking bleak at the end of 40 minutes in Sunday’s regular season finale at Adirondack. In need of a win, to keep their season alive, Maine trailed the Thunder 3-1, less than 24 hours after surrendering a 3-0 lead to lose 4-3. The Mariners refused to accept their fate however and clawed back to force overtime. Alex Kile’s power play goal with 1:29 to go in sudden death completed the comeback and lifted Maine back to the Kelly Cup Playoffs for the third straight spring.

The Mariners victory put their record at 32-32-8; a point percentage of .500, drawing even with the Worcester Railers, who lost to the Trois-Rivieres Lions 4-0 on Sunday. Because the Mariners had a better regulation win percentage than the Railers, they claimed the tiebreaker and clinched the fourth and final North Division playoff berth. The Mariners will head right back to Glens Falls, NY – where they finished the regular season, to open the playoffs against the top seeded Adirondack Thunder in the North Division Semifinals.


Game 1 – Fri, Apr. 19 | 7:00 PM | Cool Insuring Arena – Glens Falls, NY 
Game 2 – Sun, Apr. 21 | 3:00 PM | Cool Insuring Arena – Glens Falls, NY 
Game 3 – Fri, Apr. 26 | 7:15 PM | Cross Insurance Arena – Portland, ME 
Game 4 – Sat, Apr. 27 | 6:00 PM | Cross Insurance Arena – Portland, ME 
Game 5 – Sun, Apr. 28 | 3:00 PM | Cross Insurance Arena – Portland, ME 
Game 6* – Tues, Apr. 30 | 7:00 PM | Cool Insuring Arena – Glens Falls, NY 
Game 7* – Weds, May 1 | 7:00 PM | Cool Insuring Arena – Glens Falls, NY

*if necessary



Maine Mariners

The Mariners are celebrating their fifth anniversary season and hit the ice with high expectations after setting numerous franchise records the previous season, winning a team-best 42 games, and cruising into the playoffs as the #3 seed. 

It was a rocky start to Terrence Wallin’s second season as head coach, as the Mariners dropped six of their first eight games and started 2-6-1 on home ice. While they couldn’t string more than two consecutive wins together, the Mariners were also able to limit their losing streaks and continued to tread water as the calendar flipped to 2024. 

Gradually, the Mariners found their game in the new year, and in March, finally made their move. Between Mar. 8 and Apr. 5, they went on a 9-2-1 run to pull themselves out of the basement in the North and make a run at the playoffs. They also went on a hot streak at home during that span, winning seven of eight at the Cross Insurance Arena, and hitting a season high three games above .500 after a 6-2 win over Worcester on Apr. 5. An untimely five-game losing streak put their playoffs hopes on the brink heading into the season’s final day, but Alex Kile’s OT winner saved them from elimination. It was fitting that the game took place on a Sunday, as the Mariners posted an 11-3-0 record on Sundays throughout the season, accounting for over 1/3 of their victories.

Adirondack Thunder

The Thunder made the playoffs in 2022-23, but did so the hard way, making a miraculous late season push and sneaking in as the #4 seed on the season’s final day. Although they were knocked out in the first round by Newfoundland, they seemed to carry momentum into 2023-24 and went wire-to-wire as the top team in the North Division this season. 

While already a hefty 16-8-2-1 on Dec. 30th as they prepared to host Newfoundland, the Thunder would go on a legendary run through the month of January and into early February. They rattled off 12 wins in a row and stretched their point streak five additional games to 17, finding themselves an ECHL best 30-8-4-2 after an OT loss at Florida on Feb. 4th. While the Thunder couldn’t sustain that level of dominance the rest of the way, their cushion was enough to hold off the hard-charging Norfolk Admirals for the North Division title, ultimately clinching the best mark Eastern Conference as well.

The Thunder finished the regular season with 97 points and 43 wins – both franchise bests. They closed on a seven-game point streak, with a four-game win streak snapped by Maine on the final day. Peter MacArthur is Adirondack’s second-year head coach, a former teammate of Terrence Wallin.



Maine Mariners

Alex Kile, F – Kile was the story of the Mariners season offensively, setting single-season franchise records for points (83) and goals (37). He finished fourth and third respectively among all ECHL scorers in the two categories, and dominated the Thunder, with 25 points (13 goals, 12 assists) in 14 games. Kile was the ECHL Player of the Week for the first week of January and was named to the All-ECHL First Team.

Gabriel Chicoine, D – Chicoine had a breakout campaign on the Mariners blue line and was rewarded with Maine’s All-Star selection. From the back end, Chicoine finished second to Kile on the Mariners scoring leaderboard, with 61 points in 66 games. His 16 goals ranked him second among all ECHL defensemen, and he placed third in the points race.

Brad Arvanitis, G – Arvanitis earned his way into the #1 job in the Maine net by simply outperforming his competition this season. In his first full ECHL season, Arvanitis won 20 games and posted a 2.71 GAA, to go along with a .920 save percentage, which ranked him third among all eligible ECHL netminders. He was the ECHL’s Rookie of the Month for January, and later collected his first ECHL shutout against Adirondack on March 8th, with 33 saves.

Adirondack Thunder

Tristan Ashbrook, F – With 32 goals on the season, Ashbrook was second among all ECHL rookies, and his 57 points ranked him 9th. He tore up the Mariners at the close of the season, with 7 points (4 goals, 3 assists) in the last four games, which earned him the spot as the Thunder’s top scorer on the season. Ashbrook haunted the Mariners all season long, posting 17 points in the 14 games head-to-head

Yushiroh Hirano, F – Another Mariners nemesis, Hirano posted 16 points (4 goals, 12 assists) in the season series, finishing the season strong, with two goals and seven assists over the last four. The fifth-year pro posted 54 points in 59 games, the highest total since his rookie season of 2018-19 with Wheeling.

Isaac Poulter, G – Despite former Mariner Jeremy Brodeur getting the majority of the playing time in the Thunder net in 2023-24, Poulter figures to be Adirondack’s #1 in the postseason. On an NHL contract with the New Jersey Devils, Poulter joined the Thunder from AHL Utica in March and went 5-0-1 in six starts with a 2.44 GAA and a .917 SV%. He defeated the Mariners twice in the final week, posting a .921 SV% along the way.



Oct. 28, 2023: MNE 4 at ADK 3/OTMar. 8, 2024: ADK 0 at MNE 7
Nov. 11, 2023: ADK 4 at MNE 1Mar. 9, 2024: MNE 3 at ADK 4/OT
Dec. 17, 2023: ADK 4 at MNE 3Mar. 15, 2024: ADK 2 at MNE 6
Dec. 22, 2023: MNE 5 at ADK 4/OTApr. 10, 2024: ADK 5 at MNE 2
Dec. 29, 2023: ADK 0 at MNE 4Apr. 12, 2024: ADK 5 at MNE 4/OT
Jan. 5, 2024: MNE 2 at ADK 5Apr. 13, 2024: MNE 3 at ADK 4
Jan. 6, 2024: ADK 5 at MNE 4/OTApr. 14, 2024: MNE 4 at ADK 3/OT

It was a highly entertaining and competitive season series between the Mariners and Thunder, with the teams seeing each other a total of 14 times. Eight of the 14 were one-goal games, with five requiring overtime. Maine’s first win of the season came against the Thunder, on the road on Oct. 28th, with Owen Pederson scoring his first professional goal as the game-winner in overtime. The Mariners also collected both of their season’s shutouts against the Thunder: Kyle Keyser with a 43 save blanking in his season debut on Dec. 29th and Brad Arvanitis registering the first of his career on Mar. 8th. The two teams played the final four games of the regular season head-to-head, with the Thunder winning three of the four, but the last three games all being decided by one-goal, and multiple lead changes in all three. 


North Division Semifinal: #2 Norfolk Admirals vs. #3 Trois-Rivieres Lions 
South Division Semifinal: #1 Greenville Swamp Rabbits vs. #4 Orlando Solar Bears 
South Division Semifinal: #2 Jacksonville Icemen vs. #3 Florida Everblades 
Central Division Semifinal: #1 Toledo Walleye vs. #4 Kalamazoo Wings 
Central Division Semifinal: #2 Indy Fuel vs. #3 Wheeling Nailers 
Mountain Division Semifinal: #1 Kansas City Mavericks vs. #4 Tulsa Oilers 
Mountain Division Semifinal: #2 Idaho Steelheads vs. #3 Allen Americans

The Mariners 2024 Kelly Cup Playoffs are presented by Evergreen Credit Union. The Maine Mariners Broadcast Network will carry live coverage of games one and two from Glens Falls on,, and the Mixlr App, with pregame coverage beginning 15 minutes prior to puck drop. The games will also be shown at Three Dollar Deweys in downtown Portland. Tickets for games three, four and five (if necessary) at the Cross Insurance Arena, are on sale now.