Published Date Written by Staff ReportThe Portland Pirates came from two goals down to tie the game in the third, but failed to capitalize as they ultimately dropped a 3-2 decision to the St. John's IceCaps in front of a sold-out crowd at the MileOne Centre in St. John's Tuesday night, the team reported. The Pirates' magic number to clinch a playoff spot remains seven points.
The Pirates started a two-game road trip to St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada, Tuesday night, the seventh time the Pirates have met the IceCaps, and the first of two games at the MileOne Centre this week. The Pirates entered with the season series advantage, leading 4-2. The Pirates came in sitting in sixth in the Eastern Conference with 81 points, while the IceCaps were in 14th place with 64 points.
The Pirates were coming off a 4-2 loss at home against Eastern Conference rivals Springfield Falcons, allowing Springfield to clinch the Northeast Division title. The Portland Pirates fell to the Falcons in front of 5,412 at the Cumberland County Civic Center on Sunday afternoon.
The St. John's IceCaps were defeated by the Toronto Marlies in their last game, dropping a 4-2 decision. The IceCaps' leading scorer Eric O'Dell tallied both goals for St. John's, but a two-goal second saw the Marlies pull ahead to stay. Four different players had assists for the IceCaps, while IceCaps goaltender Eddie Pasquale saw 33 shots, making 30 saves on the day. The IceCaps got the better of the Pirates in their last matchup, defeating Portland at home by a 4-1 score on March 23.
The Pirates entered action Tuesday night needing seven points to clinch a spot in the 2013 Calder Cup Playoffs, trailing the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins by three points for the fifth spot in the east, and leading the Connecticut Whale by the same margin for the sixth spot.