The Portland Pirates suffered their first shootout loss of the season, falling 3-0 to the Springfield Falcons at the MassMutual Center in Springfield, Mass on Sunday afternoon. The loss puts the Pirates just one point ahead of the Providence Bruins for first place in the AHL’s Atlantic Division.
After a scoreless back-and-forth first period, the Falcons started off the second with a quick goal. Portland goaltender Chad Johnson mishandled the puck behind his own net and Wade McLeod capitalized just 14 second into the second period to give Springfield a 1-0 lead. The deficit remained at one until Ryan Johansen converted a rebound into a top shelf goal over Johnson’s shoulder, giving the Falcons a 2-0 lead at 17:24 into the second.
David Savard extended the Falcons’ lead on the power play at 3:02 of the third, his sixth goal of the year, and Falcons carried the 3-0 lead for the remainder of the game. Curtis McElhinney, the former Pirates goaltender, stopped all 28 shots he faced for his seventh shutout of the year, and handing the Pirates their first shutout loss of the year.
The Pirates fall to 27-17-1-1, while the Falcons improve to 28-11-3-3 on the year. Chad Johnson falls to 14-9-0 on the season with the loss, stopping 26 of 29 shots. McElhinney’s record improves to 21-7-1-2 on the year.