NORFOLK, VA – The Sound Tigers scored three unanswered goals, including Jesse Joensuu’s game-winner with less than a minute to play in regulation to come-from-behind and defeat the Norfolk Admirals 3-2. Mike Iggulden and Jeremy Colliton had the two other tallies for the Sound Tigers. Mike Lundin and Justin Keller had the goals for the Admirals. Tobias Stephan finished the game with 30 saves to win his first game with the Sound Tigers this season. With the win, the Sound Tigers jump ahead of the Binghamton Senators in the East Division with a 28-16-3-2 record and 61 points after the Senators lost in overtime tonight to the Rochester Americans.
In the first period, the Sound Tigers put the pressure on the Admirals, but were unable to put any of their 10 shots past Helenius. Stephan, making his first start in goal as a Sound Tiger, didn’t see his first shot until halfway through the opening period when he denied Brandon Bochenski during a goal-mouth scramble.
For the second straight night, the Admirals broke the scoreless tie when Lundin scored his third goal of the season, 4:46 into the second period. Zenon Konopka fed a pass to the right point position where Bochenski wristed a shot on goal. Stephan made the first stop on Bochenski’s point shot, but the rebound popped into the slot where Lundin backhanded the puck into the net for the 1-0 Norfolk lead. The Admirals would double their lead two minutes later when Keller broke in one-on-one against Stephan and scored his eighth tally of the year. Bochenski and Scott Jackson had the assists on Keller’s goal to give the Admirals the 2-0 lead. With 3:35 remaining in the middle frame, the Sound Tigers finally scored on Helenius, to snap his shutout string over the last two games at 96 minutes and 25 seconds. Iggulden grabbed a drop pass, left for him by Ben Walter at the top of the circles, and tried to send a pass to the back-post where Trevor Smith was waiting for the tap-in. Instead, the puck deflected off of Admiral forward Jay Rosehill and past Helenius to cut Norfolk’s lead to 2-1. Smith also had an assist on Iggulden’s 19th goal of the season.
Colliton would tie the score for the Sound Tigers about two minutes past the mid-way point of the third period. Andrew MacDonald collected the puck at the right point and walked along the blue-line and wristed a shot on net. Helenius made the initial save but the puck bounced to the left post where Colliton banged home the loose puck to tie the score at 2-2 on Colliton’s fourth tally of the season. With less than a minute remaining, Joensuu would stick-handle from behind the Norfolk net and end up at the top of the right circle where he ripped a shot over Helenius’ shoulder to tally the game-winner. Smith and Dustin Kohn had the assists on Joensuu’s 14th marker of the season, winning the game for the Sound Tigers, 3-2.
Stephan finished the game 30 saves on a total of 32 shots to record his first victory of the season with the Sound Tigers. Helenius suffered the loss while making 25 saves on 28 shots. The Sound Tigers were 0-for-4 on the power-play and 4-for-5 on the penalty-kill.
The Sound Tigers will board their team bus and travel to Philadelphia in preparation for their 5:05 p.m. face-off against the Phantoms tomorrow evening. On Wednesday, Feb. 11, the Sound Tigers will return home to skate against the San Antonio Rampage at 7 p.m. For tickets or information on how you can receive discounted group tickets, contact the Sound Tigers’ front office at (203) 334-GOAL or e-mail [email protected].