PORTLAND, ME – March 31, 2019 – The Mariners battled back from down three goals early and got a hat trick from Taylor Cammarata but fell victim to three Thunder special teams goals in the third and fell by a final score of 7-5 on Sunday afternoon at the Cross Insurance Arena. It was Maine’s fourth straight loss and it dropped them three points out of a playoff spot in the North Division.
Adirondack would build a 3-0 lead in the opening period, scoring twice in a 30 second span at 6:49 and 7:19 to break the ice. Cullen Bradshaw banked a puck off the back of goaltender Chris Nell and defenseman Blake Thompson beat Nell’s glove with a wrist shot. On the power play at 15:46, Jake Linhart blasted a point shot inside the post to make it 3-0 and chase Nell from the net. The Mariners got back in the game with Taylor Cammarata’s first goal of the game at 17:24, a high to low pass from Greg Chase to set it up. Just 37 seconds later, Dillan Fox lifted a backhand up and over Eric Schierhorn to make it a 3-2 game, which was the score after one.
After two killed penalties early in the 2nd, the Thunder went back up two on a Dylan Walchuk goal, set up nicely by Bradshaw at 10:52. The Mariners rallied back when Cammarata finished a tic-tac-toe passing play at 13:37 from McNicholas and Chase. With under two minutes left in the period, Nick Master scored on a breakaway to tie the game at four, giving him five points in four professional games.
The Mariners fell behind in the third when Shane Conacher scored on a power play quickly after a Josh Couturier interference call. The Thunder eventually got a 5-on-3 and scored on the tail end of the second penalty with a goal from Peter MacArthur. Linhart added a shorthanded goal for insurance, completing a three point game.
With their win, the Thunder clinched a spot in the Kelly Cup Playoffs presented by Smile Direct Club. The Mariners fell to three points behind Brampton, which completed a road sweep in Worcester. With four games remaining in the regular season, the Mariners still have a game in hand on the Beast, as well as the Manchester Monarchs, who are also ahead of them by three points.
The Mariners will host the Reading Royals on Wednesday, the Worcester Railers on Friday, and the Newfoundland Growlers next 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.