ECHL Game Recap: Worcester Railers vs Maine Mariners | 04/07/2024

Rich LeBlanc/InsideTheRink

Day two of fan appreciation weekend of the final homestand for the Worcester Railers at the DCU Center had a 3:00 start time Sunday afternoon. The Railers look to build off their impressive 8-2 victory Saturday night. With the Railers still controlling their own destiny into the Kelly Cup playoffs winning is key. The Railers would ultimately win 9-5, and the story of the game would be Ashton Calder.

Both teams came out of the gates hot with the regular season winding down. Both teams laid some pretty heavy hits against the boards on each other. A crazy sequence with about 15 minutes left in the period had the Mariners laying shots on Railers goaltender Henrik Tikkanen which he was a brick wall back there then led Railers Reece Newkirk on a fastbreak that Mariners goaltender Brad Arvanitis gloved. After an amazing stop by the Railers goaltender Tikkanen, the Mariners got a Rebound goal with 10:27 remaining in the period by Bennett Stockdale being in the right place at the right time for his professional goal. That was followed up by an aggressive Ashton Calder for the Railers, who slapped one off the goalie’s glove into the net to even the score. The even score would not stand for long as Brooklyn Kalmikov for the Mariners weaved through the neutral zone and got one by Tikkanen to put the Mariners up 2-1. The Mariners kept the pressure on The Railer’s defense, who had no answers, and with 6:53 remaining in the period where Ethan Ritchie joined the scoring party. The Railers found themselves in a hole, entering the lockers down 3-1.

Rich LeBlanc/InsideTheRink

The Railers started the second period with urgency. Missed opportunities for the Railers continued to weigh them down. With seventeen minutes remaining in the period, as Jake Pivonka was leaving the ice, his helmet fell off, which led to the Mariners bench having something to say about it. The Mariners scored another goal which looked like it had been kicked in by Sebastion Vidmar, but the referees ruled a good goal leaving the Railers fans with something to say about it. The Railers did not stay down on themselves for long as they were able to weave through the defense, and on the other end, Ashton Calder scored his second goal of the game, cutting the lead to two. With 13:10 remaining in the period, Railers, Joey Cipollone was able to steal the puck, then assisting Ashton Calder, who juked the goalie and put one in the net for a hat trick. Calder is not the only one that scored on the Railers; with 9:18 remaining in the period, Reece Newkirk was able to get by the double team to even the score at four apiece. Shortly after, with 8:49 on the clock, the Mariners gave the puck right back to Worcester that saw Christian Krygier give the Railers a 5-4 lead. The scoring for the period was not done there as with 1:46 left, Ashton Calder put the one-timer to the back of the net for his fourth of the game on a powerplay. With the Worcester Railers putting together an impressive second period they lead 6-4 entering the third.

Rich LeBlanc/InsideTheRink

The only way the Railers would lose is if they beat themselves. The Mariners would not lay down as with, less than two minutes into the period, Tyler Drevitch found holes in the defense, leading a goal and making it 6-5. Ashton Calder put one in the back of the net for the fifth time to give the Railers a two goal lead with fifteen minutes left in the game. The Worcester Railers continue to improve their Kelly Cup playoff chances.

After the game, Ashton Calder had a few things to say about his performance and his teams overall. For the first time in Calder’s career, he scored five goals in a game, and when asked about the turning point being the kicked goal, he had this to say, “We weren’t happy; I didn’t think that was a good call, obviously there were a lot of emotions going we were down 4-1 almost halfway through the game, and I’ve said this before at the end of the day your either a winner or a loser and nobody looks for excuses in this game.”

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