It's On To The Rock: Pens Force Game Six

Wednesday, May 9, 2012
For the third straight game, the Penguins and IceCaps were deadlocked after 60 minutes. This time, it was the Penguins hopping over the boards and celebrating.

After 92:08 of exhilarating playoff hockey, Simon Despres played hero tonight. It was his first of the playoffs but none bigger for Despres. Ben Street and Eric Tangradi got the assists on the double overtime goal.

A huge goal for Despres. He caught up with reporters after the game and had this to say:
"This one is very big because we’re on the brink of elimination. Biggest goal of my career, definitely."
So it's on to "the Rock" in St. John's, Newfoundland. The Penguins will get on a charter flight with the IceCaps and fly up to Canada together tomorrow. Game Six is scheduled for Friday at 6 p.m. EST. The Penguins still trail the series, now at a 3-2 deficit, and will need to keep that do-or-die mentality Friday night in hopes of forcing the decisive Game Seven.

The game began with a goal I might not ever see the rest of my live watching hockey. Jason King iced a puck that went on net and Brad Thiessen misjudged the slow rolling puck and it dribbled between his legs and past him. The red light came on and everyone, including Thiessen, was in disbelief.

King's unassisted goal 5:21 into the game gave the IceCaps a 1-0 lead. It wasn't until the 2nd period that the Penguins tied up the game.

While 4-on-4 after matching penalties to Brandon DeFazio and Eddie Pasuale, Cal O'Reilly found an open Paul Thompson in the slot and he made no mistake about it, burying a puck past Pasquale 8:12 into the middle period. Alexandre Picard also got an assist on the play.

The Penguins took a brief lead early into the third when Jason Williams fed a beautiful pass into the slot to Alex Grant, who pumped and fired a shot into the top of the net. However, the lead was short lived.

Geoff Walker took a holding penalty just 11 seconds after the goal and the IceCaps capitalized at the 4:00 mark of the final frame. Paul Postma got the goal. Walker didn't see the ice the rest of the third period and most of the night afterward.

A big scare for the Penguins with 6:51 left in the game. Thiessen caught Simon Despres' stick in his mask and was gashed, bleeding as he left the ice with trainer Patrick Steidle. Scott Munroe relieved him for almost four and a half minutes of game action, before Thiessen returned with 2:26 left.

So it was on to overtime for the third straight game in Wilkes-Barre. Both teams had some good chances but the game needed a 5th period in Game Five before it was all said and done.


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