The Norwich Sea Captains suffered a 4-3 setback in overtime to drop a back and forth affair to the Long Beach Sharks on Sunday, January 15 in North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) action in Long Beach. A late power play goal from Jacob Begich sent the game to overtime, earning the Sea Captains a point in the standings. Brendan Pellerito took the loss in goal despite making 23 saves.
After a scoreless first period Sava Makarenko gave Norwich a 1-0 lead 5:19 into the second period. Shane Mazur started the play with a clean seam pass through the neutral zone to Makarenko who streaked into the offensive zone and toward the Long Beach net where Chris Hamilton collected a loose puck and shot it on goal. Makarenko slid the rebound between the Sharks’ goaltender’s legs for the lead. Long Beach answered with a shorthanded goal with 3:59 left in the middle period to set the stage for a spirited, action-packed third period.
Jack Kinahan wasted no time giving Norwich a lead in the third period. Immediately after the opening faceoff Begich passed to Erik Masengill who made a clean seam pass to Kinahan who drove into the offensive zone hard and wide before rifling the puck in off the far post to put the Sea Captains up 2-1 just 13 seconds into the third. Long Beach scored twice in a span of 4:05 to take a 3-2 lead with eight minutes left to play in regulation. Begich’s goal to tie the game with 5:17 left in the third period was setup by Tim Hayden and Kinahan. Hayden dished the puck to Kinahan and then went to the net to provide a screen as Kinahan fed the puck to Begich who measured his shot and then blasted the puck home through the Hayden screen.
Long Beach scored 2:07 into the overtime session to earn the victory and the extra point in the standings. The Long Beach penalty kill played a huge role in their triumph by holding the Sea Captains power play to one goal in seven attempts while also netting a shorthanded goal.
“Long Beach outworked and out-executed us today to earn the win. I felt that there were a few critical moments throughout the game where the momentum was ripe for the picking and Long Beach seized the majority of those opportunities,” said Sea Captains Head Coach Kevin Cunningham.
The Sea Captains will continue their string of five consecutive road games when they travel to Bay State to take on the Bobcats on Wednesday afternoon, January 18 at 12:30 PM. The game will be broadcast on HockeyTV.