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MONARCHS LOSE IN 2007 FINALE

by Staff Writer / Los Angeles Kings
MANCHESTER, NH ?Left wing Lukas Kaspar froze the clock with 2.1 seconds left in the game as the puck crossed the goal line for the Worcester Sharks 3-2 win over the Manchester Monarchs in front of 8,148 fans at the Verizon Wireless Arena on Monday evening.

Manchester (14-15-4-1) is tied for fifth place in the Atlantic Division with Worcester (14-12-3-2). Both teams have 33 points.

The clock stopped counting with 2.1 seconds left in the final frame as Kaspar netted the game winning goal with a score of 3-2 in favor of Worcester. Defenseman Dan Spang and right wing Graham Mink shuffled the puck back and forth in the offensive zone shifting netminder Erik Ersberg to the right post. Kaspar received a pass from the right corner as he was cutting across the ice to the left and put a one-timer past Ersberg's glove for a last second game-winner.

The Monarchs and Sharks exchanged 5-on-3 power play goals in the first period with the Sharks biting first at 4:19. Posted at the left face-off circle center Mike Iggulden found Mink dug in at the left door step of Ersberg. Mink rammed the disk past the pads of Ersberg for the early 1-0 Worcester lead. Forward Devin Setoguchi was credited with the secondary assist.

The No. 1 power play team hit the ice scoring their first power play goal in four games at the eight minute mark of the first period. Defenseman Peter Harrold and right wing Teddy Purcell exchanged the puck in the offensive zone while center Gabe Gauthier skated into position. Purcell relayed the saucer to Gauthier at the right point who put a one-timer past goaltender Thomas Greiss ending the period with a tied score of one apiece.

The Monarchs, this time on a 5-on-4 power play, took a 2-1 lead at 4:42 in the second episode of the game. Gauthier, at the left point, connected with Harrold skating into the right face-off circle. Greiss stretched his stick out to block Harrold's shot but came up short. Center Brian Boyle capitalized at the left post by redirecting Harrold's shot behind Greiss for the team leading 14th goal of the year.

Getting revenge for a goal waived off at the 14:30 mark of the period, Mink scored his second 5-on-3 power play goal of the game only one minute and 22 seconds later. Ersberg withstood a confetti of shots until Mink, amidst a slew of players, was able to punch the puck lighting the lamp for a period ending score of 2-2. Iggulden and Setoguchi both got their second assists of the night on the fourth power play goal of the game.

Ersberg stopped 30-of-33 shots in the loss while Greiss denied 21 of the 23 shots he faced in the victory.

Manchester went 2-for-4 on the power play. Worcester was 2-for-7 with the man advantage.

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