Glens Falls, NY – The Adirondack Thunder fell 5-3 to the Worcester Railers in their final game before the holiday break on Saturday evening at Cool Insuring Arena.
Forwards Paul Rodrigues and Ben Murphy, along with defenseman Desmond Bergin, found the back of the net in defeat for Adirondack. Goaltender Nick Riopel made 14 saves from 15 shots in relief after he entered the game to begin the second period of play.
The Railers controlled play late in the first period and capitalized with a pair of goals less than a minute apart to open up a two-goal lead. First, at the 15:05 mark of the opening period, Wade Murphy created a turnover in the Adirondack end and hit Matt Lane in the slot, where he scored his first goal of the season to open the scoring. Just 38 seconds later, the Railers struck again as Woody Hudson one-timed home a pass from Frankie DiChiara for his seventh goal of the season as DiChiara and Kubiak collected the assists on the play.
Immediately following a Nick Saracino slashing minor, Worcester created a breakaway opportunity and forward Chris Langkow was hooked on the play and was awarded a penalty shot. Langkow moved in and went forehand-to-backhand and slid the puck past Thunder netminder Chris Nell to increase the Railers' lead to 3-0.
Adirondack got on the board early in the second period as Rodrigues scored his fourth goal of the season 5:03 into the middle stanza. Conor Riley, stationed on the right-hand halfwall, hit a streaking Rodrigues in the slot where he used a nifty move on Worcester goaltender Eamon McAdam and slid the puck home for the goal. Riley and Bergin picked up the helpers on the play, the sixth of the season for Riley.
Worcester regained its three-goal advantage just over three minutes later, however, as Barry Almeida scored on new Adirondack goaltender Nick Riopel to push his team's advantage to 4-1. After Riopel made the initial stop on defenseman Mike Cornell, Langkow corralled the rebound and fed Almeida at the back post where he redirected it in. Langkow and Cornell picked up the assists on the play to give Langkow a multi-point effort on the evening.
After the Railers extended their advantage to four with an empty-net goal, the Thunder scored twice in the final seven minutes, beginning with Ben Murphy's tally with 6:35 left in regulation. Murphy and forward Terrence Wallin executed a give-and-go play in the offensive zone and Murphy beat McAdam through the five hole from the right side for the goal. Bergin then collected his second point of the evening with 80 seconds left in regulation as he beat a screened McAdam to cut his team's deficit to 5-3. Murphy and forward James Henry picked up the assists on Bergin's sixth tally of the season.
The Thunder are off for a holiday break over the next three days before they return to action on Wednesday against the division-leading Manchester Monarchs at Cool Insuring Arena. Puck drop is slated for 7:00 p.m. Tickets are available for the post-Christmas showdown by calling 518-480-3355 on Tuesday or Wednesday or by visiting ECHLThunder.com/donate.
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