Mar. 12, 2019 – With the unpredictability of the ECHL’s North Division a constant theme from week to week in the 2018-19 season, it should be no surprise that there’s still very little decided as teams push past the 60 games played mark. All that is truly known is that the Newfoundland Growlers will be in the postseason, likely as the top seed. The Mariners’ hard charge has put them only a point out of second, but still just four up on a playoff spot altogether. Manchester, Brampton and Worcester are all very much in the mix along with Adirondack and Maine to make up the 2, 3, and 4 slots in the playoff picture. Reading is teetering, but still alive. The Mariners enjoy somewhat of a light week, by recent standards – getting an entire six days off between games.
THE WEEK THAT WAS
Wednesday, Mar. 6th – NOR: 1, MNE: 3
It was a solid defensive performance throughout by the Mariners, who scored a goal in each period to build a 3-0 lead. Former Admirals Greg Chase and Taylor Cammarata each found the net, the third goal from John Furgele, who would be traded the following day. Connor LaCouvee lost the bid at his first pro shutout late in the game, but stopped 39/40 to earn his 11th win of the season. The Mariners swept the season series against Norfolk. FULL GAME RECAP & HIGHLIGHTS
Friday, Mar. 8th – SC: 1, MNE: 4
The Mariners took the lead in the 1st by breaking a power play drought that had reached 26 straight, thanks to Dillan Fox. Dwyer Tschantz was the story of the second period with a pair of goals, Wade Murphy adding a fourth for good measure. LaCouvee once again lost the shutout in the 3rd but once again was solid in between the pipes. The Mariners improved to 5-1-0 against the South Division and tied their season long point streak (6) and home win streak (5). FULL GAME RECAP & HIGHLIGHTS
Saturday, Mar 9th – SC: 2, MNE: 1/OTFor a night, the Mariners became the Maine Wild Blueberries, and drew over 4900 people to the Cross Insurance Arena. Greg Chase stayed hot with a first period power play goal but gave it back when his roughing penalty minutes later led to the Stingrays tying the game. It was a battle the rest of the way, but the Mariners couldn’t find any third period puck luck, hitting three posts and getting shut down by South Carolina netminder Adam Morrison, who made numerous spectacular stops. With less than a minute remaining in OT, Sam Fioretti beat LaCouvee’s glove to hand Maine its first home loss in six. The point streak continued to a season high seventh game. FULL GAME RECAP & HIGHLIGHTS
-D Zach Tolkinen was returned from loan to AHL Hartford-The Mariners signed F Chris Ordoobadi-F Terrence Wallin was loaned to AHL Hartford-The Mariners acquired F Branden Troock from Atlanta for D John Furgele-G Chris Nell was reassigned to Maine from AHL Hartford-F Greg Chase was loaned to AHL Hartford-F Drew Melanson was reassigned to Maine from AHL Hartford-G Connor LaCouvee was recalled to AHL Laval
COMING UP (all times Eastern)
Sat, Mar. 16th @ Worcester Railers – 7:05 PM (AWAY)Sun, Mar. 17th vs. Newfoundland Growlers – 3:00 PM (HOME) – BEACON’S BIRTHDAY BASH PRES. BY EVERGREEN CREDIT UNION
The remainder of the regular season is inside the North Division. The Mariners visit Worcester on Saturday for the first of two trips to the DCU Center in a six day span. Maine has won six in a row against the Railers, head to head. On Sunday, the first place Newfoundland Growlers are at the Cross Insurance Arena. Newfoundland has hit a bit of a speed bump of late, losing two of three to Orlando on home ice over the weekend. The Growlers are 5-1-0 against Maine this season. Celebrate Beacon’s 1st birthday with a mascot party as part of “Beacon’s Birthday Bash” presented by Evergreen Credit Union. Members of the Mariners Kids Club can skate with the team after the game. The puck drops at 3:00 PM
The Mariners have two more Sundays afternoon home dates in March – the 24th against Manchester and 31st against Adirondack. The 24th is Country Night presented by 99.9 The Wolf. On the 31st, the Mariners will screen D2: The Mighty Ducks on the video board after the game. The full promotional schedule can be found HERE. There are only six regular season home games remaining.
STANDINGS UPDATE (top 4 make playoffs):
1. Newfoundland: 83 points, 11 games remaining (magic number: 8 pts)2. Adirondack, 70 points, 11 games remaining3. Maine, 69 points, 11 games remaining4. Manchester, 68 points, 11 games remaining5. Brampton, 66 points, 12 games remaining6. Worcester, 65 points, 12 games remaining7. Reading, 61 points, 11 games remaining
*NOTE: The first tiebreaker is ROW (regulation and overtime wins). The Mariners currently hold that tiebreaker over Brampton, Worcester, and Reading, but lose it to Newfoundland, Adirondack, and Manchester.