ALBANY, NY — Paul Thompson’s goal with 1:04 remaining in overtime game the Albany Devils a 2-1 victory over the St. John’s IceCaps Wednesday at Times Union Center. The Devils outshot the IceCaps 38-18, but need Thompson’s late effort to secure the two points.
For the second straight game, Paul Thompson scored the game-winning goal late to give the Devils an important victory in a tight game. Thompson got the puck on the rush, raced in along the boards and fired a quick shot that just beat IceCaps goaltender Dustin Tokarski.
“Off the rush, I looked at the net and saw he was a bit off his angle so I just tried to throw the puck on net,” Thompson said. “Fortunately I got a bit lucky.”
“In a tight game you want that from those guys,” said Head Coach Rick Kowalsky of Thompson and Mike Sislo. “You trust them defensively first, that’s where it has to come, but you want them to be able to score and win you the game.”
Defense Down a Man
The Devils found themselves short on the bench in the second period when Dan Kelly was given a match penalty. The Devils were forced to shuffle their defense pairs for the rest of the game and give big minutes to the remainder of their defenseman, especially veterans Marc-Andre Gragnani and Seth Helgeson.
“Anytime in a tight game you lose a guy like him, who is a big penalty kill guy and shutdown guy, it’s tough,” Kowalsky said. “You ask some guys to play extra minutes, maybe on the penalty kill and play in some more situations. You never want to lose a guy.”
Sislo Ties Record
Mike Sislo has been sensational on the power-play all season. His league leading ninth power-play goal of the season Wednesday pushed him into a tie with Niclas Bergfors (2006-09) for the Devils’ career record for power-play goals at 27.
As he so often does, Sislo found a little room at the top of the circle and fired a beautiful wrist shot into the back of the net. It was a strong team effort to set Sislo up.
“Matt Lorito got a good draw, Tropp kicked it out to Gragnani at the point,” Sislo said. “He walked the line and it kinda cleared a lane for me. I just tried to get to the middle of the ice as quick as possible and get a shot off. We had good screens in front of the net.”