It wasn’t a perfect game for the Portland Pirates after allowing a pair of shorthanded goals, but they will take the win after downing the Hartford Wolf Pack, 5-2, in front of 2,544 at the XL Center on Friday night.
As of later, the power play for the Pirates appeared to have turned a corner, but suffered a hiccup after they allowed a pair of goals while skating with the extra man, something they haven’t done all season.
The Wolf Pack lead the league in shorthanded goals with 10.
A turnover by Marc-Andre Gragnani at 15:14 of the first period led to the first one, as Ryan Garlock beat Pirates’ netminder Jhonas Enroth to give Hartford a 1-0 lead.
At 15:05 of the second period, Cody McCormick fired a wrist shot by Wolf Pack goalie Chad Johnson for the only goal of the period as the Pirates tied the game at 1-1.
Johnson just returning from the NY Rangers stayed busy during the period as Portland outshot the Wolf Pack 15-3 in the second period.
The Pirates took the lead, 2-1, when McCormick scored his second of the night while on the power play only 57 seconds into the third period after deflecting Pirates’ defenseman Dennis Persson shot by Johnson.
At 4:10, the Wolf Pack scored their second shorthanded goal of the night when Brodie Dupont was credited with the goal after stuffing his own rebound by Enroth, tying the game at 2-2.
Less than two minutes later, the Pirates took the lead for good when Tyler Ennis scored, beating Johnson at 5:57 of the third period.
Philip Gogulla gave the Pirates a two goal cushion, 4-2, when he scored his fifth goal of the season at 10:27 of the third period after snapping a shot in the slot past Johnson.
The Pirates tacked on a goal for good measure with 23 seconds left as Brad Larsen scored an empty net goal.
Enroth made 16 saves for the Pirates in the win, while Johnson stopped 24 shots in the loss.
The Pirates have been strong as of late on the road, taking points in their last eight road games going 5-0-2-1 during that span dating back to Nov. 15 in Bridgeport.