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Penguins beat St. John's 3-1, even AHL playoff series with IceCaps

NHL.com @NHL

ST. JOHN'S, N.L. - St. John's IceCaps coach Keith McCambridge said he expected a tougher game form Wilkes-Barre-Scranton in Game 2 of their American Hockey League second-round series.

The Penguins did not disappoint.

Joey Mormina scored the winner on a short-handed rush as the Penguins beat the IceCaps 3-1 Wednesday and tied the Eastern Conference semifinal at 1-1.

Game 3 is Saturday in Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

The Penguins had the IceCaps on their heels early in the game, outshooting St. John's 11-0 to start the first period. St. John's was outhsot 38-23 overall, once again looking sluggish in the second of back-to-back home games.

"What's shocking, or surprising on our side, is that after you see (back-to-back games) all season with where we are located in St. John's, we still come out with not enough intensity," McCambridge said.

McCambridge was adamant last night that the Penguins were going to come out harder in Game 2 after falling 3-1 to the IceCaps on Tuesday night. While Wilkes-Barre/Scranton came out with the expected push, the IceCaps let off the gas.

"We knew that they were going to come out with a better game than they played last night," McCambridge said.

"We knew we had to keep an even keel and make sure we're not patting ourselves on the back from last night's win. I thought they came out with the intensity we thought they would and we didn't have much push back."

Eric Tangradi and Jason Williams also scored for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. Cal O'Reilly set up the winner and Williams' power-play insurance goal to give him six points in seven playoff games.

Ben Maxwell replied for St. John's.

Brad Thiessen made 22 saves for the Penguins.

Eddie Pasquale stopped 35 shots for the IceCaps.

Tangradi opened the scoring off of a scramble in front of Pasquale at 9:48 of the first period. Pasquale made the initial save on the play before the puck bounced out to Tangradi who flipped the puck over a sprawling Pasquale.

St. John's tied the game at 15:42 when Maxwell tipped Derek Meech's point shot past Thiessen.

The Penguins took a 2-1 lead when Mormina was finished off a short-handed two-on-one with O'Reilly for the goal.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton kept pouring it on with their special teams in the third. Williams took advantage of some confusion among the IceCaps' forwards on the penalty kill and fired a hard shot past Pasquale at 4:58.

"It's a team game out here, and as a team as a whole we didn't play our best," IceCaps defenceman Travis Ramsey said.

"Without a doubt, we're going to look at ourselves in the mirror tonight and see what we can do better individually, but also look at tape and see what we can do better as a team."

Both teams were 1-for-7 on the power play.

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