ECHL Playoff Recap: Adirondack Thunder vs Maine Mariners Game 5| 04/28/2024

Miasara McLaughlin/InsideTheRink

For the third postseason in a row, the Maine Mariners had a pivotal Game 5 at home. In the last two playoff series, the Mariners were unable to secure a win. On Sunday afternoon in Portland, the Mariners came up short for a third time in as many seasons by dropping a 3-0 decision to the Adirondack Thunder. It was the ninth meeting between the two teams in the last 19 days, with the 1st place Thunder now having two chances to advance with home games Tuesday and Wednesday night.

The Mariners carried play for much of the first period, with forward Alex Kile having the best chances on Thunder goaltender Isaac Poulter, but Maine was unable to score while leading in shots 11-7. Forward Ryan Wheeler would get the Thunder on the board at 3:35 of the second period. The Mariners had several chances to tie, including a breakaway by Kile, but Poulter made the save and then stopped a rebound that came right back to Kile to keep Maine off the board. Overall, Mariners coach Terrence Wallin was happy with the effort:

“I think we played a good game. I was happy with the effort. I really wouldn’t change much. We just have to finish our chances. I told the team, if you think we can’t win this series, you’re crazy”.

Maine Mariners Head Coach Terrence Wallin on the team’s performance

At 2:09 of the third period, Filip Engaras would give Adirondack a 2-0 lead as he deflected a spinning wrister off the stick of Erik Middendorf from high above the circles that eluded Maine goaltender Shane Starrett. Not many chances for Maine the rest of the way as Adirondack outshot the Mariners 16-6 in the period. Adirondack would add an empty net goal. Poulter finished the night with 29 saves in the shutout, his second win and shutout of the series. Starrett made 27 saves in the loss.

The Thunder were first in the North Division with a 43-18-7-4 record, while Maine finished ninth with a 32-32-8-0 record. Adirondack took two in a row in Maine after falling behind 2-1 in the series. The Mariners lost Game 5 home games the last two seasons to Reading and would lose the series both times in six games.

Game 6 will be at Adirondack on Tuesday night.

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