MARINERS ANNOUNCE TEAM AWARD WINNERS

PORTLAND, ME – April 12, 2019 – The Maine Mariners handed out end-of-season awards following their final game of the season this past Sunday, honoring forwards Louie Rowe, Dwyer Tschantz, Dillan Fox, Michael McNicholas, and Greg Chase. The awards were for “community leader”, “most improved player,” “unsung hero,” “rookie of the year,” and “most valuable player,” recipients all chosen by Mariners head coach Riley Armstrong.

A first year pro just out of Arizona State University, Louie Rowe helped at numerous youth hockey practices this season, spoke with honor roll students at Songo Locks School in Naples, Maine, and was heavily involved with last month’s “Checking for Charity” fundraiser with the South Portland Professional Firefighters. Rowe served a celebrity coach for the event and was also one of three Mariners to visit the South Portland Fire Department to learn about the daily routine of a firefighter. Louie is also pro-active in the fight against cancer, losing his childhood best friend to brain cancer. On the ice, Rowe appeared in nine games with one assist and three fights.

Dwyer Tschantz was deemed the Mariners’ most improved player, finishing with a strong final two months. After a proverbial “cup of coffee” with the Worcester Railers in 2017-18, Tschantz spent his first full season as a professional in Maine and was one of four players on the roster from training camp through the end of the season. He scored his first Mariners goal in his third game on October 24th against Manchester, but had just two over his first 27 games. On February 15th in Norfolk, Tschantz caught fire, starting a streak of three straight games with a goal and eventually scored 7 in a span of 13 games, including his first career multi-goal game on March 8th against South Carolina. Tschantz saw his role increase and become a key part of the Mariners offense, finishing with nine goals and seven assists in 50 total games.

Dillan Fox was this season’s “unsung hero.” After being cut by the Reading Royals out of training camp, Fox returned to the SPHL where he had spent the bulk of his career as a pro. On January 3rd, Fox was loaned to the Mariners from the Roanoke Rail Yard Dawgs, and proceeded to score the third most of goals of anyone to suit up in a Mariners uniform this season. With seven multi-point games, and three multi-goal games, Fox accumulated 16 goals and 10 assists in 37 contests in his first full season in the ECHL. Twelve of those goals came over the final 17 games. Fox figures to be a major part of the forward depth for next season.

Team rookie of the year, Michael McNicholas joined the Mariners in November after starting his season in Europe and burst onto the scene, with six goals and 15 assists in his first 18 games. He scored his first professional goal on November 10th against Worcester. The University of New Hampshire alumnus quickly found a row in the top six, playing in all situations: 5 on 5, power play, and penalty kill. With a team leading 40 assists, McNicholas finished in top 5 among all ECHL rookies, and was one of three Mariners with 50 points this season. He was also a durable player, not missing a single game after his arrival in Maine.

Greg Chase was named team MVP, averaging more than a point per game as a Mariner after his acquisition from Allen mid-season. The Mariners traded for Chase in December, and he registered 42 points in 41 games in a Maine uniform. Leading the team in goals, game winning goals, points per game, and finishing second in points, Chase quickly became a fan favorite. He also earned a letter on his sweater as an alternate captain, and earned two call ups to the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack. Chase was the ECHL’s CCM Player of the Month for February, when he had 18 points in 13 games and seven multi-point performances.

The second season of Maine Mariners ECHL hockey will begin in October. Full and half season ticket packages are available by calling 833-GO-MAINE or visiting the Mariners front office located next to the Cross Insurance Arena at 94 Free Street.

MARINERS WEEKLY: A Memorable First Season

Apr. 11, 2019 – The inaugural season of Maine Mariners hockey ended fittingly with a shootout victory on Sunday afternoon as the Mariners defeated the Newfoundland Growlers in front of a crowd of over 3400 at the Cross Insurance Arena. The first season of ECHL Mariners hockey saw the team finish with a 37-32-2-1 record, placing 6th in an ultra-competitive North Division. The Mariners were the only non-playoff team in the ECHL with more wins than losses. They had a remarkable 13-2-1 extra time (overtime or shootout) record, including 7-1 in shootouts, providing more than their fair share of dramatics over a memorable inaugural campaign. The final 2018-19 edition of Mariners Weekly will take a comprehensive look back at the season that was.

 

SLOW START

While many fans will rightfully point to the season opener, and the return of pro hockey to Portland as their favorite moment of the season, a 6-3 loss to the Adirondack Thunder kicked off an 0-3-0-0 start to 2018-19. After struggles in net by both Brandon Halverson and Chris Nell, it was rookie Connor LaCouvee who rose to the surface, earning Maine’s first franchise win on Oct. 21st, when he made 32 saves to beat Newfoundland, 4-2. LaCouvee defeated Manchester three days later to pull the Mariners back to a 2-3-0-0 record, but they dropped road games to Manchester and Adirondack, finishing October just 2-5-0-0.

 

REMEMBER NOVEMBER

The Mariners got their first road win on November 7th at Reading, the first of what would be a four game win streak to get them on track. Shawn St-Amant scored a memorable overtime goal on Nov. 9th at Worcester, skating straight off the ice after putting in the game-winner. The following night, in front of over 5,000 fans for Marvel Super Hero™ and Military Appreciation Night, Michael McNicholas’ first professional goal was the game winner, sparking what would be a terrific rookie season for the former UNH forward. Up through and past Thanksgiving, the only hiccup was a 3-0 loss in Brampton on Nov. 16th. From Nov. 2nd through Nov. 28th, the Mariners had points in 8 of 9 games, bringing their record to 9-6-0-1 heading into the final game of the month, a 4-2 loss to Worcester, which snapped a 7 game home point streak. Perhaps the biggest highlight of the month was Ty Ronning’s five point third period on Nov. 24th against Manchester, helping the Mariners rally back from a 4-1 deficit in the third period to a 6-4 win. That same night was the Teddy Bear Toss, Riley Bourbonnais scoring the fur-flying goal.

 

HAPPY HOLIDAYS

Although they lost two of the first three games in December, the Mariners had another strong month, winning 8 of 10 between Dec. 7th and 29th. Along the way were three shootout wins (12/7 vs. ADK, 12/15 @ WOR, 12/28 vs. WOR), paving the way for the team’s knack for finding a way to win in the clutch. Brandon Halverson continued his emergence as the true #1 in between the pipes and the goal-scoring combination of Alex Kile and Morgan Adams-Moisan paced the offense. On December 14th, the Mariners acquired Greg Chase from Allen in exchange for Bourbonnais, the headliner of many transactions that would change the look of the team over the proceeding months. The Mariners entered New Year’s Eve on a six game win streak, with an 18-11-0-1 record, and in third place in the North Division.

 

JANUARY SWOON

When the Mariners look back on their missing of the playoffs, it is their month of January that they’ll see did them in. Manchester ended their win streak on New Year’s Eve and sent them into a spiral in which they’d drop 13 of 17 games overall. They did get a win over Brampton on “Throwback Night,” while wearing original Mariners uniforms in front of over 4700 in attendance on January 5th, but wins were hard to come by for the rest of the month.  Leading scorer Alex Kile was loaned to AHL Laval where he’d stay for the rest of the season. Terrence Wallin, Morgan Adams-Moisan, Ryan Culkin, Zach Tolkinen, and others were all shuttling back and forth throughout the month. Dillan Fox, an SPHL pickup from Roanoke, would eventually fill a lot of the holes left behind on offense, but he didn’t begin to produce until the end of the month. The slump carried into early February, when the Mariners were embarrassed on home ice during the weekend of February 8th and 9th, losing non-divisional games by 8-1 and 8-2 scores to Cincinnati and Greenville, respectively. While it felt like rock-bottom, those losses would wake the Mariners up, for one last potential push for the playoffs.

 

ROAD WARRIORS

The Mariners embarked on a road swing that would take them away from the Cross Insurance Arena for eight of nine games from late February into early March. Before leaving, they managed to get two key home wins on February 10th and 13th to rebound from the Cincinnati and Greenville debacles. The game on Feb. 13th featured yet another improbable third period comeback – the Mariners once again rallying from 4-1 down to cap the comeback on Brycen Martin’s overtime winner. The road trip began with four consecutive wins: a sweep at Norfolk and victories in Reading and Adirondack. Two more OT heroic moments included: Michael McNicholas and Terrence Wallin (against his former team). Manchester once again played streak stopper on Feb. 23rd, but another seven game point streak followed, including taking 5 of 6 possible points on the road in Utah. A shootout win over the Grizzlies on March 1st marked the team’s 10th consecutive win in OT or shootout games. After home wins over Norfolk and South Carolina marked their return to Portland, Maine was solidly back in third place, with 12 games to go. Connor LaCouvee had taken back the #1 spot on the goaltending depth chart with Halverson in AHL Hartford to stay. LaCouvee had signed a two-way AHL/ECHL deal with the Laval Rocket, who’d later call on him again.

 

FIGHTING TO THE FINISH

There was no doubting this team’s magic when Wade Murphy ended an 18-round shootout against Newfoundland on March 17th with his 2nd goal of the marathon mini-game. Another OT triumph followed on Mar. 22nd in Worcester thanks to Greg Chase. That would turn out to be the team’s high point, both statistically, and emotionally. The Mariners were a season high nine games above .500, but still only three points up on a playoff spot thanks to the success of Brampton and Manchester around them. The Monarchs got a 6-2 statement win at the Cross Insurance Arena on Mar. 24th, the first of five consecutive Mariners losses at an unfortunate time. Between a goal scoring slump and some struggling defense and goaltending, the Mariners lost a pair to Adirondack and Reading each, finding themselves on the outside of the playoff picture and without control of their own destiny heading into the final weekend of the season. They managed to win two of the last three, but it was Brampton that joined Newfoundland, Adirondack, and Manchester in the North Division postseason.

 

SEASON HIGHLIGHTS

Oct. 13th, 2018 vs. Adirondack – The season opener. A 6-3 loss to Adirondack but an exciting and energetic game in front of 5,291 fans. Jason Salvaggio scored the first goal in franchise history, on the power play.

Oct. 21st, 2018 vs. Newfoundland – The Mariners got their first win in franchise history, coming from behind in the 3rd, which would turn out to be a common theme for the team. Alex Kile had a pair of goals while Connor LaCouvee, making his first pro start, stopped 34 shots for a 4-2 win.


Nov. 10th, 2018 vs. Worcester – The Mariners wore Captain America jerseys for Marvel Super Hero™ Night. In what would be the 2nd largest crowd of the season at 5003, Michael McNicholas’ tie breaking goal in the 3rd was the eventual game-winner in a 3-1 final.

Nov. 24th, 2018 vs. Manchester – Teddy Bear Toss Night, and also eventually “the Ty Ronning game.” Ronning had three goals and two assists in the third, to lead the Mariners back from a 4-1 deficit to a 6-4 win.

 

Dec. 28th, 2018 vs. Worcester – Another specialty jersey night featuring Michael McNicholas as hero. Wearing Nickelodeon Double Dare sweaters, McNicholas tied the game in the third and scored the shootout winner, as the Mariners prevailed over Worcester, 3-2. A crowd of 4305 witnessed.

Jan. 5th, 2019 vs. Brampton – Over 4700 people, including Mariners alumni turned out for “Throwback Night.” Brandon Halverson played one of his strongest games, making 37 saves to lead the Mariners to a 3-1 victory in what was an otherwise rough month of January. Halverson would pick up the team’s first and only shutout victory 13 days later.

Feb. 13th, 2019 vs. Worcester – The Mariners pull off their second three goal third period comeback of the season, erasing Worcester’s 4-1 lead on goals by debuting defenseman Josh Couturier, third line winger Wade Murphy, and one-goal D-man Derek Pratt. Brycen Martin scored the lone 3-on-3 home winner of the season to send the Mariners onto a long road stretch with a massive victory.

Feb. 15th, 2019 @ Norfolk – Michael McNicholas scores the OT winner as the Mariners rally back from a 3-1 deficit on the road to start a five game road trip with a win. The Mariners would win the first four games of the trip.

Feb. 22nd, 2019 @ Adirondack – Yet another come from behind road victory, with Greg Chase tying the game in the third and former Thunder Terrence Wallin netting the overtime winner. The first and only win in Glens Falls of the season.

Feb. 24th, 2019 vs. Worcester – Johnny McInnis ties the game in the third and then scores the go-ahead goal in the sixth round of a shootout. Josh Couturier wins it in the 7th round, assisted by a solid goaltending performance by Hannu Toivonen, who picked up several big wins in his time as a Mariner.

Mar. 17th, 2019 vs. Newfoundland – With Newfoundland leading 4-2 heading to the third, Drew Melanson and Dillan Fox each score their second goals of the game to force OT. A marathon shootout ensues, with the Mariners scoring three times in “must score” situations to keep the game alive. Finally, in the 18th round, Wade Murphy, who had already scored in the shootout, buries his 2nd attempt to win the game.

Mar. 22nd, 2019 @ Worcester – In his first game back from an AHL call-up, Greg Chase scores both goals in a 2-1 OT win, giving the Mariners six extra time wins against the Railers over the course of the season.

Apr. 7th, 2019 vs. Newfoundland – The Mariners give their fans one more thrill, topping Newfoundland in a shootout again. Wade Murphy reprises his role as shootout hero, ending the season on a high note.

 

CAREER YEARS

Brandon Halverson, G – 30 GP, 15-13-0-1, 2.67 GAA, .924 SV%. After a rocky start, Halverson put up his best numbers as a professional as a Mariner, earning him a call up to Hartford in early February, where he’d spend the remainder of the season. When Halverson was in between the pipes, the Mariners were at their best.

Greg Chase, F – 64 GP, 23 G, 28 A, 51 PTS. Chase played for three teams in 2018-19, but was by far most effective in a Mariners uniform. With 42 points in 41 games, Chase earned two separate loans to Hartford. He also was named an Alternate Captain. Chase’s previous career high in points was 37 in 43 games with Norfolk in 2015-16.

Alex Kile, F – While Kile technically didn’t hit his career high in points due to AHL loans, he was on pace to shatter his totals from 2017-18. With 20 points (13 G, 7 A) in 22 games, Kile was only eight shy of his career high totals set the previous season in Cincinnati. Kile’s time in Maine was marked by his dominance in the first three months, before stints in Hartford, Utica, and Laval – where he stuck, kept him up at the AHL level for all of the 2019 portion of the season.

Brycen Martin, D – 54 GP, 7 G, 21 A, 28 PTS. One of a handful of players who spent the entire season in Maine, Martin rapidly improved his production as the season went along, finding a knack for collecting assists on tip-in goals by getting shots to the net from the blue line. He led all Mariners defenseman in points and scored the only 3-on-3 OT winner on home ice. (Feb. 13th vs. WOR)

 

ROOKIE STANDOUTS

Michael McNicholas, F – 65 GP, 13 G, 40 A, 53 PTS. McNicholas was the team’s leading scorer for much of the season, and finished as the leader in assists, ranking fourth among all ECHL rookies. He was a durable player, appearing in every game after his arrival in early November, and playing in all situations.

Morgan Adams-Moisan, F – 42 GP, 15 G, 6 A, 21 PTS. Starting the season as the token tough guy, Adams-Moisan quickly emerged as one of the top goal scoring options on the Mariners roster. Between November 28th and  January 27th, he scored all 15 of his ECHL goals. He’d earn three separate call ups to AHL Laval, where he finished the season – playing a total of 16 AHL games.

 

INAUGURAL SEASON BY THE NUMBERS

13 – The number of overtime and shootout wins the Mariners achieved this season. They went 6-2 in overtime and 7-1 in shootouts. They won 10 straight games that went past regulation between November 7th and March 1st.

22 – The total number of Mariners who also played at least one game in the AHL this season. Derek Pratt will make it 23 if he suits up for Utica before season’s end.

40 – The number of assists for Michael McNicholas in his rookie season. McNicholas led the team in helpers and finished 4th among all ECHL rookies in the category.

58 – The number of players who suited up in a Mariners uniform this season. 33 forwards, 18 defenseman, and 7 goaltenders – including Domenic Graham, who skated only as backup and never appeared in a game.

73 – The amount of games played this season by Taylor Cammarata, between Norfolk, Wichita, and Maine. Only defenseman Josh Elmes (Rapid City & Fort Wayne) played as many games as Cammarata this regular season.

MORE MURPHY SHOOTOUT MAGIC AS MARINERS END INAUGURAL SEASON WITH WIN

PORTLAND, ME – April 7, 2019 – The Maine Mariners concluded their inaugural season on a high note with a 4-3 shootout win on Sunday afternoon against the Newfoundland Growlers at the Cross Insurance Arena. For the second time in three weeks, it was Wade Murphy scoring the shootout winner against the Growlers.

The Mariners took a 2-0 lead before the game was barely two minutes old. At the 1:35 mark, Wade Murphy caused a turnover just outside the Newfoundland blue line and Terrence Wallin spotted Ty Ronning alone in front of Growlers goaltender Michael Garteig. Ronning slid the puck around Garteig’s pad to open the scoring. At 2:01, Taylor Cammarata kept his hot stick going with a short side wrister set up by line mates Greg Chase and Michael McNicholas. It was Cammarata’s seventh goal in the span of seven days. At 17:19, Ronning got his second goal of the game, a power play feed to the back door by Nick Master that was also touched by Dwyer Tschantz. The Mariners took a 3-0 lead into the first intermission.

The Growlers dominated the 2nd period, outshooting Maine 14-4. The 3-0 score held up until the 12:54 mark when Scott Pooley one-timed a cross ice pass from Zach O’Brien home for a power play goal to get Newfoundland on the board. Less than two minutes later, O’Brien got a goal of his own to make it 3-2, cutting the deficit to one at the end of 40 minutes.

In the third, the Growlers got even at 7:23 when Evan Neugold came down the slot, took a pass from O’Brien, and beat Nell’s glove to tie the game. Nell ended up making 39 saves through regulation as the game advanced to overtime. It was an entertaining 3-on-3 period with each shot getting three shots on goal, but the goaltenders stood strong to force a shootout.

Greg Chase beat Garteig top shelf to start the shootout, while Nell turned aside Zach O’Brien. Taylor Cammarata and Scott Pooley were each denied, setting the stage for shootout specialist Wade Murphy. Murphy, who had scored two shootout goals in the 18-round marathon three weeks prior, beat Garteig’s stick side to clinch the win.

The Mariners finished their inaugural season with a record of 37-32-2-1 and in 6th place in the North Division. They finished 22-12-1-1 on home ice. In the North Division playoffs, #1 Newfoundland will host #4 Brampton while #2 Adirondack will host #3 Manchester.

MARINERS FALL IN MANCHESTER, DASHING PLAYOFF HOPES

MANCHESTER, NH – April 6, 2019 – The Maine Mariners were eliminated from playoff contention on Saturday night at the SNHU Arena, falling by a 5-2 final score to the Manchester Monarchs. Trailing 4-0 late in the third, the Mariners got two goals to thicken the plot, but an empty netter put the game away. The North Division playoff field will be made up of the Newfoundland Growlers, Adirondack Thunder, Manchester Monarchs, and Brampton Beast. The Mariners have one game remaining in their inaugural season, tomorrow afternoon at home against Newfoundland.

In the opening period, Manchester struck first when Tony Cameranesi stole the puck from Dwyer Tschantz inside the Manchester blue line and skated all the way down the right wing, beating Francois Brassard’s glove for a 1-0 Monarchs lead. The Mariners responded to the goal with consistent pressure and quality scoring chances for the rest of the period, but Manchester held its 1-0 lead. Maine won the 1st period shot battle, 15-14.

The 1-0 score held up all the way until the 18:33 mark of the 2nd period when Cory Ward finished off a rush with a top shelf backhander. Just 22 seconds later, David Kolomatis took a shot that trickled through Brassard’s pads to make it 3-0, putting the Mariners in a deep hole entering the third period.

The Monarchs went up 4-0 just 51 seconds into the third when Jack Nevins tipped home a pass from Ward. Finally at 13:36, Maine got on the board when Taylor Cammarata caused a shorthanded turnover and slipped a backhand through the pads of Charles Williams. A minute later, Ty Ronning cleaned up a Terrence Wallin rebound to suddenly make it a two goal game. Pierre-Luc Mercier found the empty net at 18:43 to seal the game. The Mariners finished with a season high 45 shots on goal, surpassed their previous high of 43, set on February 1st, also at Manchester.

The Mariners close out the regular season tomorrow afternoon against Newfoundland at the Cross Insurance Arena at 3:00 PM for Fan Appreciation Night. Prizes from the Mariners and their sponsors will be given away throughout the game, including autographed New York Rangers memorabilia. Tickets are available at MarinersOfMaine.com or at the Trusted Choice Box Office inside the Cross Insurance Arena. The Trusted Choice Box Office can be reached at 207-775-3468.

MARINERS POWER PLAY KEEPS PLAYOFF HOPES ALIVE

PORTLAND, ME – Apr 5, 2019 – The Mariners power play scored three times while Francois Brassard made 41 saves to earn his first ECHL win as Maine stayed alive in the playoff race with a 4-2 win over the Worcester Railers on Friday night at the Cross Insurance Arena. With their loss, the Railers were eliminated from playoff contention.

The Mariners used the power play to build a 3-0 lead in the first period, with Taylor Cammarata opening the festivities at 9:57. Taking a pass at the goal line, Cammarata curled the puck around Railers goaltender Blake Wojtala and in for a 1-0 Mariners lead. At 12:11 of the period, Yanick Turcotte was assessed a five minute major and game misconduct for boarding Josh Couturier. The Mariners capitalized twice on the long power play – Dillan Fox with a redirect at 14:12 from Zach Tolkinen and Cammarata with his second goal at 15:14 off a nifty pass from Michael McNicholas.

The Mariners were outshot in the 2nd period, 14-4 but took a 4-0 lead when Terrence Wallin set up Nick Master. Wallin had just exited the penalty box and was fed a two-line pass from Johnny Coughlin. Wallin waited and found Master streaking down the left wing, and Master tapped home his third goal, and sixth point in six pro games. Before the period ended, Worcester got on the board as Josh Holmstrom redirected a Mike Cornell shot past Brassard, making it a 4-1 game through two periods.

In the third, a parade to the penalty box ensued, but the score remained 4-1 until Matt Schmalz got the Railers a step closer at 13:03 with a wrist shot past Brassard’s blocker from the slot. The Mariners had a few chances to score on the empty net, including Cammarata with a hat trick bid, but 4-2 was the final score. Brassard made 41 saves on 43 shots for the first win of his ECHL career.

The Mariners are two points behind Brampton for the fourth and final North Division playoff spot with two games remaining. They’ll need at least three points to make the playoffs, while also requiring Brampton to lose both of their remaining games (a home-and-home against Toledo). The Manchester Monarchs clinched a playoff berth tonight with a shootout win over Newfoundland.

The Mariners will visit Manchester tomorrow for their last regular season road game at 6:00 PM. They’ll close out the regular season on Sunday afternoon against Newfoundland at the Cross Insurance Arena at 3:00 PM. Sunday is Fan Appreciation night. Prizes from the Mariners and their sponsors will be given away throughout the game, including autographed New York Rangers memorabilia. Tickets are available HERE or at the Trusted Choice Box Office inside the Cross Insurance Arena. The Trusted Choice Box Office can be reached at 207-775-3468.

RONNING, WALLIN JOIN MARINERS FROM HARTFORD

PORTLAND, ME – Apr 4, 2019 – Forwards Ty Ronning and Terrence Wallin are re-joining the Mariners from the AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack, the teams announced on Thursday. Ronning was reassigned from the New York Rangers and Wallin returned on loan. The Mariners have three games remaining in the regular season this weekend, and are three points behind the Brampton Beast for the fourth and final North Division playoff spot.

Ronning, 21, was initially assigned to the Mariners in late November and burst onto the ECHL scene with a five point game against Manchester on November 24th. With the Mariners trailing 4-1 in the 3rd period, Ronning led them back with three goals and two assists in an eventual 6-4 victory. In 22 games with Maine, Ronning registered 19 points (9 goals, 10 assists). He scored an overtime winner at Brampton on January 12th. The following weekend, Ronning suffered a lower body injury and did not appear in another game for the Mariners. On February 13th, he was recalled to Hartford. With the Wolf Pack, Ronning has scored four goals with one assist in 23 games. The Burnaby, B.C. native is a 2016 draft pick of the Rangers.

Terrence Wallin has been riding the ECHL-AHL shuttle most of the season. The Mariners’ alternate captain started the season in Maine, and has been loaned to Hartford four separate times: November 19th, December 6th, January 16th, and March 7th. With the Wolf Pack, Wallin has no goals and one assist in 23 games. The assist, on March 16th at Utica, was the first of his AHL career. Wallin played four games in the AHL with Binghamton in 2017-18. In 38 games with Maine this season, Wallin has 11 goals and 26 assists. His signature moment of the season came on February 22nd when he scored the overtime winner against his former team at Adirondack. The Mariners acquired Wallin from the Thunder in mid-September in exchange for defenseman Matias Cleland. The Yardley, PA native and his family now makes their home in Maine.

The Mariners will host the Worcester Railers on Friday and the Newfoundland Growlers next Sunday. In between, they finish their road schedule on Saturday in Manchester. NESN Bruins TV host and former AHL Mariners broadcaster Dale Arnold will make an appearance on Friday. It’s also Teacher Appreciation Night and the final 1-2-3 Friday of the season ($1 hot dogs, $2 popcorn, and $3 Bud Light through the start of the 2nd period). Sunday is Fan Appreciation night. Tickets are available at HERE or at the Trusted Choice Box Office inside the Cross Insurance Arena. The Trusted Choice Box Office can be reached at 207-775-3468.

FOUR UNANSWERED GOALS CARRY ROYALS OVER MARINERS

PORTLAND, ME – Apr 3, 2019 – The Reading Royals responded to a 1-0 deficit with four goals in a row on their way to a 4-1 win on Wednesday night at the Cross Insurance Arena. With their win, the Royals staved off elimination and jumped the Mariners for fifth place in the North Division standings. The Mariners remain in contention for the postseason, with three games remaining.

After most of the first period was scoreless, the Mariners drew first blood when Greg Chase scored a nifty wraparound goal at 14:32. Wade Murphy was called for boarding and Reading capitalized on a bit of a controversial goal at 16:46. Mariners goaltender Francois Brassard claimed he had the puck covered to his left but it eventually popped back out for Nick Luukko to blast home from the point to tie the game at one. The score was tied up at one at the end of 20 minutes.

Reading had the better chances and zone time in the 2nd and broke the tie on a two-on-one rush at 15:58. Kevin Goumas fed Josh MacDonald who one-timed it past Brassard giving Reading its first lead, which they took into the 2nd intermission.

In the third, the Royals added on with their second power play goal at 4:05 of the period, MacDonald once again the recipient. Brassard couldn’t squeeze his pads and MacDonald jumped on a loose puck to make it 3-1. The Mariners pulled Brassard with just under five minutes to go and after a big stop by netminder Jamie Phillips, Chris McCarthy tipped one past Zach Tolkinen and found the empty net to seal the game.

Each team finished with 40 shots on goal, Phillips making 39 saves and Brassard, 36.

The Mariners remain three points behind Brampton, but also fell behind Reading with the loss. The Beast have to finish their season with three games against Central Division leaders Cincinnati and Toledo. Reading travels to Adirondack to start a season-ending home-and-home.

Maine will host the Worcester Railers on Friday and the Newfoundland Growlers next Sunday. In between, they finish their road schedule on Saturday in Manchester. NESN Bruins TV host and former AHL Mariners broadcaster Dale Arnold will make an appearance on Friday. Tickets to all home games are available HERE or at the Trusted Choice Box Office inside the Cross Insurance Arena. The Trusted Choice Box Office can be reached at 207-775-3468.

MARINERS WEEKLY: Win Or Don’t Get In

April. 1, 2019 – It’s now or never for the Maine Mariners. Picking an unfortunate time of the season to drop four straight, their slump has them on the outside looking in to the North Division Playoff picture with four games to go. There are still multiple paths to the postseason, but all of them involve the Mariners finishing strong. Three of the final four are on home ice in what will be a busy week of hockey in Portland.

 

The week that was
Friday, Mar. 29th – MNE: 2, REA: 6

The weekend actually got off to a great start when newly added Zeb Knutson scored 2:15 into his Mariners debut. Unfortunately, it was all downhill from there, with Reading scoring twice to take the lead into the first intermission and four more unanswered goals before Dillan Fox finally stopped the bleeding after the game was well in hand for Reading. Francois Brassard also made his ECHL debut, relieving Chris Nell in the third period. Despite the loss, the Mariners magic number decreased as Brampton lost to Adirondack. FULL GAME RECAP

Saturday, Mar. 30th – MNE: 2, ADK: 4

The Mariners opened up a 2-0 lead on first period goals by Nick Master (the first of his pro career) and Zeb Knutson. Francois Brassard, making his first ECHL start, looked to have things under control until a late 2nd period goal from Mariners killer John Edwardh. The Thunder carried their momentum into the third, tying it early and eventually taking the lead thanks to Mike Szmatula with about eight minutes left. A full ice-length empty netter by defenseman Blake Thompson sealed the most frustrating loss of the season. FULL GAME RECAP

Sunday, Mar 31st – ADK: 7, MNE: 5
In desperate need of a win, the Mariners didn’t get the start they were looking for and fell into a 3-0 first period hole on goals by Cullen Bradshaw, Blake Thompson, and Jake Linhart, again chasing Nell in favor of Brassard. Taylor Cammarata and Dillan Fox got two back before the period ended, and the Mariners battled in the 2nd to eventual tie things at four. Cammarata scored his second of the game and Master got his second in as many games to pull Maine even through 40 minutes. The Mariners got into penalty trouble in the 3rd and the lethal Thunder power play made them pay, scoring twice in the third and thrice in the game. Linhart added a shorthanded goal before Cammarata finished the somber hat trick. FULL GAME RECAP & HIGHLIGHTS

 

Transactions
-The Mariners claimed F Zeb Knutson off waivers from Indy
-F Greg Chase was returned on loan from AHL Hartford
-D Josh Wesley was assigned to Maine from AHL Hartford by Carolina

-D Rich Boyd was released from his SPC
-D Josh Wesley was recalled to AHL Hartford by Carolina
-D Ryan Culkin was reassigned to Maine from AHL Laval


Coming up (all times Eastern)

Weds, Apr. 3rd vs. Reading Royals – 7:00 PM (HOME)
Fri, Apr. 5th vs. Worcester Railers – 7:15 PM (HOME) – DALE ARNOLD APPEARANCE
Sat, Apr. 6th @ Manchester Monarchs – 6:00 PM (AWAY)
Sun, Apr. 7th vs. Newfoundland Growlers – 3:00 PM (HOME) – FAN APPRECIATION NIGHT

The Mariners and Reading Royals will both be in “must win mode” on Wednesday at the Cross Insurance Arena as they finish their season series. Boston Bruins NESN TV host and former Maine Mariners AHL broadcaster, Dale Arnold will make a pregame appearance on April 5th, with copies of his book, If These Walls Could Talk for sale. It’s also “Teacher Appreciation Night” and the final 1-2-3 Friday ($1 hot dogs, $2 popcorn, and $3 Bud Lights through the start of the 2nd period). The game is presented by Three Rivers Whitewater. The final road game of the regular season is in Manchester on Saturday, March 6th and the regular season concludes with the Newfoundland Growlers visiting the Cross Insurance Arena on Sunday, March 7th at 3:00 PM for Fan Appreciation Night.


Standings update (top 4 make playoffs)
:
1. Newfoundland: 92 points, 3 games remaining (clinched #1)
2. Adirondack, 80 points, 4 games remaining (clinched playoffs)
3. Manchester, 76 points, 3 games remaining (magic number: 5 pts)
4. Brampton, 76 points, 3 games remaining (magic number: 6 pts)
5. Maine, 73 points, 4 games remaining
6. Reading, 72 points, 3 games remaining
7. Worcester, 70 points, 4 games remaining

*NOTE: The first tiebreaker is ROW (regulation and overtime wins). Both Manchester and Brampton have the tiebreaker on Maine, and Manchester has clinched their tiebreaker.


PATHS TO THE PLAYOFFS
The easiest path for the Mariners is to simply win their final four games. If they accomplish that (while beating Manchester in regulation), they will clinch a playoff spot regardless of what Manchester and Brampton do otherwise. Brampton has the most difficult remaining schedule, playing ECHL-leading Cincinnati on Friday, followed by a home-and-home with Central Division #2 seed Toledo. If the Beast lose 2 of those 3 games in regulation, a 3-1 Maine record, would be enough to get them in.

MANCHESTER REMAINING SCHEDULE: Weds .@ WOR, Fri .vs. NFL, Sat. vs. MNE
BRAMPTON REMAINING SCHEDULE: Fri. @ CIN, Sat @ TOL, Sunday vs. TOL

RYAN CULKIN REASSIGNED TO MAINE

PORTLAND, ME – April 1, 2019 – The Mariners added to their blue line on Monday as defenseman Ryan Culkin was reassigned from AHL Laval to Maine. Culkin, who began the year with the Mariners, had had two call ups to Laval, and has been on the Rocket roster since February 2nd.

Culkin, a 25-year-old native of Montreal, has played 35 games in Maine, with two goals and 20 assists. He scored the second goal in franchise history, a power play goal on October 13th against Adirondack. His initial recall came on November 22nd, and he was returned December 10th. On February 2nd, the Rocket called him up a second time. In Laval, Culkin has played 9 games, scoring one goal.

Culkin signed with the Rocket in the July, after spending all of 2017-18 in the ECHL with the Fort Wayne Komets, where he led all team defenseman in points, with 38 in 53 games. Culkin was a fifth round draft pick of Calgary in 2012 and has played 92 career AHL games, along with 137 in the ECHL.

Four games remain in the regular season, with the Mariners behind the Manchester Monarchs and Brampton Beast by three points for the  third and fourth North Division playoff spots. Maine has a game in hand on each team, but does not hold the tiebreaker against either.

The Mariners will host the Reading Royals on Wednesday, the Worcester Railers on Friday, and the Newfoundland Growlers on Sunday. They finish their road schedule on Saturday in Manchester. NESN Bruins TV host and former AHL Mariners broadcaster Dale Arnold will make an appearance on Friday. Tickets to all home games are available HERE or at the Trusted Choice Box Office inside the Cross Insurance Arena. The Trusted Choice Box Office can be reached at 207-775-3468.