ST. JOHN'S, N.L. - Suspect penalty killing and a poor third period did in the St. John's IceCaps on Sunday.
Alexandre Picard scored the go-ahead goal midway through the third period as the Norfolk Admirals defeated St. John's 5-2 to claim the Mary Brown's Cup in American Hockey League exhibition play.
The Admirals scored three power-play goals in the game as Norfolk won the pre-season series 2-1.
"Our first two periods were pretty good, and I don't think we did anything overly wrong in the third other than allowing that power play goal," St. John's captain Jason Jaffray said. "Our penalty kill wasn't great tonight, they had three power-play goals against us. That's where the game slipped away."
IceCaps coach Keith McCambridge said the team will focus on special teams as it continues to ready for the season.
"Our first period and second period we had a lot of shots on net, but not a lot of traffic," he said. "I thought we were pretty good on the fore-check, had some turnovers we didn't need to have, but our penalty kill had some goals against that put us on our heels."
The Admirals got on the board just over a minute into the game when Michel Ouellet put home a weak shot past IceCaps starter Edward Pasquale.
Riley Armstrong tied it for the IceCaps just befor the five-minute mark, burying a rebound past Admirals' started Dustin Tokarski.
Despite a long 5-on-3 power play in the first period, the IceCaps failed to capitalize on the advantage.
Tokarski made a number of key saves during the second period to keep the game tied.
The IceCaps made a goalie change midway through the second, putting in Peter Mannino to replace Pasquale.
IceCaps went ahead 2-1 when Jaffray stepped up and scored for the home squad on a powerful one-timer on a feed from Marco Rosa.
But the Admirals equalized almost immediately on a power-play goal from Jeff Dimmen, who unleashed a powerful wrist shot on a pass from Carter Ashton that beat Maninno high.
Picard put the Admirals ahead for good at 7:30 of the third when he scored during a scramble in front of the net.
Ashton added an insurance goal with just under four minutes left and Tyler Johnson added the empty-netter.
The IceCaps outshot Norfolk 32-26 and went 0-for-3 on the power play while Norfolk went 3-for-6.
Veteran IceCaps forward and Newfoundland native Jason King hopes the team can take some positives away from the loss.
"We had a couple good periods, but the third period wasn't our best," King said. "It's a good step, but we obviously have to learn from today. It's tough to lose like that in the third period, but it's also good to learn those mistakes early. We can't accept those kind of losses in the third."
The IceCaps will open the season on the road against the Providence Bruins on Oct. 7.