The St. John’s IceCaps are hitting the road and looking to put a rough six-game homestand behind them.
They currently have a playoff spot in their grasp as they sit in fourth place with 58 points (25-23-7-1), but there is little room for error. It’s a close race between them, the third-place Toronto Marlies (63 points) and the fifth-place Utica Comets (55 points).
Keep your eye on the top line of Charles Hudon, Chris Terry, and Nikita Scherbak, who were a force to be reckoned with during the month of February, accumulating an impressive 46 points between them.
Friday, March 3 - Rochester Americans
Up first are the Rochester Americans who currently sit in last place in the North Division with 46 points (22-31-0-2).
The last time these two teams met was back on December 17. The IceCaps managed to push their way to overtime, with Max Friberg and Yannick Veilleux each potting a goal for the IceCaps.
During the extra frame, however, the IceCaps couldn’t register a shot on goal, and ended up falling to the Americans in a 3-2 decision.
Saturday, March 4 and Sunday, March 5 - Toronto Marlies
The Marlies have passed the IceCaps in the standings yet again, but only five points separate them. A series win for the IceCaps this weekend could see them make their way back into third place.
It’s always a good battle when these two rivals meet. With the playoffs just around the corner, and just a handful of points separating them, I’m sure this weekend will not disappoint.
The last time these two teams met was at the end of January for a weekend series. It was not a great showing for the IceCaps, who came out on the losing end of both contests.
Friday’s game ended in a 5-3 loss with Bobby Farnham, Veilleux, and Ryan Johnston lighting the lamp for the IceCaps. Michael McCarron let his frustration show in the final minutes of the game, getting called for slashing, charging, and a 10-minute unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.
The result of Saturday’s game was even worse. The IceCaps were outshot 44-27 and were unable to solve netminder Garrett Sparks, allowing the Marlies to skate away with a 4-0 victory.
That previous series aside, the matchups between these two teams have been pretty even so far this season. They’ve met a total of seven times, with the IceCaps winning three out of those seven contests.
So really, it’s anyone’s game as the race to the playoffs continue.