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Last power play dooms Generals
Pride 3, Generals 2
BY KEITH TOLBERT
Special to the News & Record
Greensboro News & Record - February 14, 2002
The Generals' James Demarais (right) takes a shot against Pee Dee's J.R. Prestifilippo. Pee Dee won 3-2 in overtime.
Photograph by Lynn Hey - News & Record
Allan Sirois, the Pride's leading goal scorer, scored the winner three minutes' into the overtime session. The goal came after several near-misses during the power play when the Generals failed to clear the puck.
"They're one of the best power-play teams in the league," coach Graeme Townshend said. "When you give them five power plays, they are going to get one."
Townshend was feeling confident after his team killed a power play at the start of the third period with the Generals down 2-1.
"I told Alex (Godynuk) that if we could kill that one, I felt like we had a good chance to win," Townshend said.
After several tough road games, Pride coach Payne Davis said it was good to get back in the win column. But the Generals certainly didn't make it easy.
"They took it to us in the second period," Davis said. "To be able to win when they are putting out that kind of effort, gives us great comfort."
The Pride came out strong and jumped to a quick 1-0 lead when Matt Reid stuck back a rebound from Jeff Burgoyne with 9:26 left in the first period. It looked like the Pride were going to make quick work of the Generals when Mike Lee scored off another rebound with 6:56 left to make it 2-0.
"It wasn't like we were outplayed," Townshend said.
Newly signed goalie Andre Racicot played nearly perfect in net the rest of the way. Racicot played for the Montreal Canadians for five seasons, and had been playing in the Quebec Senior League.
The Generals cut the lead in half early in the second period when Jeff Zehr found David Whitworth all alone in front of the net and ripped a pass to him through traffic. Whitworth's goal made it 2-1 with 16:54 to play in the session.
Whitworth added the tying goal with 10:35 left in the third period after a shot by Zehr was knocked out to him by Chris Brassard.
"It was a great effort," Townshend said. "We played the game we wanted to play, we just didn't get the win."
Another newly acquired player saw his first home ice action for the Generals in the game. Alex Mativchuk, from Ukraine, saw several minutes of ice time and will see more.