MARINERS STORM BACK TO CLAIM VIP RIVALRY CUP
WORCESTER, MA – March 18, 2023 – After trailing 3-1 through 20 minutes, the Mariners rallied from behind to defeat the Worcester Railers 6-4 on Saturday night at DCU Center. The win snapped a four game losing streak and clinched the 2023 VIP Rivalry Cup, presented by VIP Tires & Service.
The teams traded power play goals in the first half of the opening period. At 4:37, Jacob Hayhurst beat Michael DiPietro in the slot after the Mariners failed to clear the puck out of the zone. At 9:20, Austin Albrecht got the equalizer, cleaning up a blue line shot from Marc-Olivier Duquette, backhanding a rebound home past Ken Appleby. The Railers then struck with a pair of goals from Andrei Bakanov and Liam Coughlin just 24 seconds apart at 13:45 and 14:09, prompting the Mariners to call their timeout. Worcester led 3-1 after one.
The Mariners were on a mission in the 2nd, and stormed back with thee goals to take the lead. At 7:02 of the frame, Albrecht dished one to Alex Kile for a one-timer in the slot to bring the deficit to one. Then, after the Mariners came up empty on a lengthy 5-on-3, Chase Zieky continued his hot streak, wristing one home from down the left wing past the glove of Appleby. Late in the frame with under 90 seconds to go, Pat Shea fed the newest Mariner, Carter Johnson right in the paint to tip one between Appleby’s pads and make it 4-3 Maine.
Tyler Hinam netted an insurance tally at 8:11 of the third when he pounced on a rebound off Appleby’s pad, stretching the lead to 5-3. The Railers pulled Appleby with less than four minutes to play and Coughlin got one back, pulling a loose puck around DiPietro at 16:36. But Coughlin then took an elbowing penalty which led to Nick Master’s power play deflection of Gabriel Chicoine’s shot, sealing the 6-4 victory. On the Master goal, Tim Doherty recorded his 41st assist of the season, setting a Mariners single season record. Chase Zieky led all Mariners with three points in the game. DiPietro stopped 30 of 34 to earn his 14th victory of the season.
With the Mariners’ 5-2-0-1 record through seven games in the season series with Worcester, they’ve officially claimed the VIP Rivalry Cup for the first time. Their victory combined with Adirondack’s shootout loss to Newfoundland, dropped the “magic number” for clinching a playoff spot to 14. The Mariners have also now matched last season’s win total of 33.
The Mariners (33-22-2-1) and Railers finish their weekend series back in Portland tomorrow afternoon at the Cross Insurance Arena. Game time is 3 PM and it’s “Beacon’s Birthday,” featuring appearances by a number of local mascots. There’s also an open skate following the game. More information on all upcoming promotions can be found at MarinersOfMaine.com/promotions.
Individual game tickets can be purchased online, at the Ware-Butler Box Office inside the Cross Insurance Arena, or by calling 207-775-3458. Family Four Packs are available for all Saturday and Sunday games and can be purchased here. Information on ticketing options is available by calling 833-GO-MAINE, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or by visiting MarinersOfMaine.com.
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