BRAMPTON, ON – After enjoying most of their week off, the Beast got back to it as the visiting Worcester Railers come to Brampton for a Sunday afternoon game. Both teams are tied for the bottom of the North with a .500 winning percentage, but the Beast are two points up having played twice as many games as the Railers. When last they played, the Beast held off the Railers to win 4-3 in Worcester.
December 10: vs Worcester Railers
This game certainly started the way it ended, with a roar! The Railers came to town the night before and were stoked to play a hard game. The Beast were well rested after their All-Star break and were also ready for a hard game. The result was a very fast-paced game with a lot of physical action at both ends. Both teams wanted the two points, and they kept the energy level up for the entire 60 minutes, plus the OT. Both goalies had to play on their heads the entire game and ended up with over 30 saves a piece in the game.
The Beast made two big player moves prior to the start of the game. The first was that David Vallorani had returned to the Beast lineup after 23 games in Europe this season. Fans will remember Vallorani as the Beast’s points leader and fan favorite from last season. The second player move was that fan favorite Luc-Olivier Blain had been cleared to play and no longer had to prowl the bench as the temporary assistant coach. Both would make their presence known through the game, as Vallorani would get a goal and the first star, while Blain was relentless on the penalty kill.
As mentioned, the first period started with speed and energy. Both teams would attack, only to be blocked by the other team and move the action to the other end. Each team shared in the pair of back-to-back slashing calls made around the seven-minute mark. Both teams held the other off to ensure that neither took got the first goal. The Beast slashing call was on Reggie Traccitto who ended up putting Ashton Rome out of the game, who was taken off the ice with a towel to his face.
A short time later, Matt Petgrave and Barry Almeida made accidental contact at center ice and stayed down for a while. Fortunately, both players recovered and continued to play, with no penalty called. The scoring eventually opened with 58.9 seconds left in the first when Matthew Gaudreau found an open Chris Langkow, who put the puck in the open side of Marcus Hogberg.
The teams picked up where they left after their short break and Petgrave got two minutes for tripping early in the period to break up a play. After the penalty was killed, the Beast took control in their end and Petgrave and Brandon Marino went flying up on a 2-on-1 break in front of Eamon McAdam. Marino took the shot and a trailing Alex Foster cleanly put it in the net to tie the game. Thus launched the teddy bear fall almost three minutes into the second period.
With under six minutes left, the Beast would find themselves on their second and final power play. With just under 40 seconds left on the power play, Marino saw the open Stefan Fournier at the corner of the net, made the pass, and Fournier buried it in the net with authority, breaking his stick in the process. While the Railers would continue to try for the tie, the Beast held the lead and the second period ended with the Beast up 2-1.
About three minutes into the third period, the Beast took control of the scoring with a Vallorani goal, to net his first ECHL goal this season in his first game back with the Beast. That lead was fleeting though as Mike Folkes got a high-sticking minor after sending T.J. Syner to the ice. That mistake would prove costly as the Railers rallied their steam and Frankie DiChiara put Langkow’s soft shot behind Hogberg to make it a 3-2 game at the halfway mark of the third period. That steam would prove almost too much for the Beast as they pulled McAdam with just over two minutes left, and scored with the extra attacker to tie the game. With about a minute left, Chris Leveille was sent to the box for “slashing” and the Beast were in trouble. They managed to have an excellent penalty kill and ended regulation in a tie.
The OT period started with a 4-on-3 for the Railer as Leveille continued his penalty. The five minute OT would end with each team only getting a single shot on net. Matt Lane scored in the first round for the Railers, while Leveille scored on his second round shootout attempt. After Hogberg stopped Gaudreau’s fifth-round shot, Traccitto got the game-winning goal as he beat McAdam on a nice glove-side shot.
In the end, the Beast again beat the Railers 4-3, but this time it took the shootout to decide the winner. A special mention for Langkow who scored the Railers first and third goal, while assisting on the second. The Railers’ take the point home and stay at .500 while the Beast end up above .500 for the first time this season.
Score: Railers 3 – Beast 4 (SO)
Shots: Railers 36 – Beast 35
Penalties: Railers 2 – Beast 6
Railers goals scored by DiChiara (1) and Langkow (2). Assists from DiChiara (1), Gaudreau (1), Langkow (1) and Nick Saracino (1).
Beast goals scored by Foster (1), Fournier (1), Traccitto (GWG) and Vallorani (1). Assists from Jordan Henry (1), Leveille (1), Brandon MacLean (1), Marino (2) and Petgrave (1).
Week 10 Games:
The Beast finish out their 2017 home stretch with their second December 3-in-3 with two home games sandwiching an away game. All of these games are versus tough non-divisional rivals and will be important to win for the standings.
December 15: vs Toledo Walleye
December 16: at Kalamazoo Wings
December 17: vs Atlanta Gladiators
This Week in Player Movements
December 5: None
December 6: None
December 7: Marcus Hogberg (G) was assigned from Belleville by Ottawa
December 8: Eric Ylitalo was released and is eligible for waivers
December 9: David Vallorani (F) signed contract and added to active roster
December 9: Luc-Olivier Blain (F) was activated from reserve
December 9: Scott Jacklin (F) was placed on reserve
December 9: Jackson Leef (F) was placed on reserve
December 10: Daniel Ciampini (F) was assigned by Belleville
December 11: None
December 12: None
December 13: Traded (F) Colin Martin to Reading for future considerations