The Norwich Sea Captains used three power play goals and a strong defensive effort to beat the Long Beach Sharks 4-1 Saturday evening, December 3 in North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) play at the Long Beach Municipal Ice Arena. Brendan Pellerito made 34 saves to earn his sixth consecutive win in the Sea Captains’ cage and Brian Essing assisted on all three Norwich power play goals. Shane Mazur also tallied a goal and an assist, both on the power play.
Mazur’s goal opened the scoring 5:15 into the second period after a scoreless opening stanza. Essing and Teagen Beier established possession with a good cycle play before the puck reached Mazur at the blue line. He eluded a Shark penalty killer before unleashing a laser of a shot that found the far upper corner of the net to put Norwich in front. The Sharks evened the score 6:16 later with a power play goal of their own. With 3:48 left in the second Long Beach was assessed a major penalty for checking from behind. The Sea Captains took advantage in a big way. Jacob Begich rifled a puck into the far low corner of the net after a strong faceoff win from Essing with :53 left in the second. Then, after the intermission, Sava Makarenko put Norwich up two goals just :19 into the third period. Essing and Mazur assisted. At the 9:21 mark of the final period Andry Guy buried a chance in the slot on a power move to the net that saw both the goal scorer and the goalie end up in the cage with the puck. Darrell Smith and Carson Dutcher provided the helpers on Guy’s goal.
Pellerito was strong in the Norwich net, particularly in the opening period when he made 15 saves. The Sea Captains’ power play was clutch, connecting on three of six opportunities, while the Sharks scored on one of their two man up chances.
Essing commented on his team’s effort saying, “The boys pulled it together after a bit of a shaky first period and played to our strengths for the rest of the game. The power play capitalized on our opportunities and Pelle made some very big saves when we needed them.”
The Sea Captains return to the RoseGarden Ice Arena for their next game with they host the Bay State Bobcats on Friday, December 9 at 12 PM. Tickets to all remaining home games are available HERE.