The night started off with the IceCaps annual team awards. The winners were:
- Fans Choice - Jacob de la Rose
- Rookie of the Year - Charlie Lindgren
- Molson Three Stars award - Charlie Lindgren
- Statoil Community Man of the Year - David Broll
- Defenceman of the Year - Joel Hanley
- Top Scorer - Chris Terry
- M.V.P. - Chris Terry
Coming into Friday night’s game, the St. John’s IceCaps had their fate in their own hands, needing just one win from two games this weekend. Unfortunately, the IceCaps loss, paired with a Utica win, means St. John’s will need a victory in their final game to secure the final spot in the North Division.
When the game finally got underway, the Marlies took an early lead through Steve Oleksy. The defenceman’s shot beat a screened Charlie Lindgren from the point.
Then a Charles Hudon tripping penalty sent the visitors on the powerplay. Toronto added to their lead shortly after. Brendan Leipsic’s 18th of the season put the Marlies up 2-0, just 7 minutes into the game.
Two minutes later, Hudon, made up for his causing the Marlies powerplay goal by bringing the IceCaps within one. Hudon tucked home a rebound off a Joel Hanley shot.
In the second it was again the Marlies who got off to a quick start. Trevor Moore made it 3-1 for Toronto, just 23 seconds into the period.
Six minutes later, Hudon picked up a loose puck and found himself on a breakaway. The speedy forward undressed Marlies goaltender Garrett Sparks, before sliding the puck home, making it a 3-2 game.
Later in the period, a strong play on the penalty kill by Stefan Matteau led to Jacob de la Rose being alone in front with an open net. The Swede buried his 14th of the season, shorthanded, to tie things up at 3-3. Charlie Lindgren picked up the secondary assist on the goal, which was his first professional point.
30 seconds later, with the PA announcer still announcing the IceCaps goal, Seth Griffith snapped a shot over the shoulder of Lindgren, sending the Marlies to the intermission with a 4-3 lead. You could see the IceCaps, and feel Mile One, deflate after that goal.
In the final 20, the IceCaps couldn’t find the equalizer they desperately needed. The Marlies showed why they are the class of the North Division, keeping the IceCaps at bay.
STJ: Charlie Lindgren (L) 19/23
TOR: Garrett Sparks (W) 25/28
- Charles Hudon |STJ| 2G
- Steve Oleksy |TOR| 1G 1A
- Brett Findlay |TOR| 2A
The IceCaps season finale goes Saturday night at Mile One. If the IceCaps win, they’ll face the Marlies in the first round of the playoffs. A loss will end the IceCaps season, and also end the Montreal Canadiens’ affiliation with St. John’s.