Bernier, Monarchs push Sharks to brink
MANCHESTER 1, WORCESTER 0
Bud Holloway tied an AHL record with his sixth game-winning goal of the playoffs and goaltender Jonathan Bernier made it stand up with a 30-save shutout as Manchester took a 1-0 road win over Worcester on Wednesday in Game 5 of the Atlantic Division Finals.
The Monarchs now hold a 3-2 lead in the series and can punch their ticket to the Eastern Conference Finals with a home-ice victory in Game 6 on Friday night.
Holloway scored the game’s only goal at 13:11 of the opening period, with forwards Gabe Gauthier and John Zeiler earning the assists.
All six of Holloway’s goals during these playoffs have been game-winners, tying Darren Haydar for the most game-winning markers in any single AHL postseason. Haydar netted six decisive tallies for Milwaukee in 2006 en route to a berth in the Calder Cup Finals.
Holloway is the Monarchs’ playoff scoring leader with 10 points (6-4-10), and the 22-year-old has found the scoresheet in each of Manchester’s nine postseason contests thus far.
Bernier, who registered a league-leading nine shutouts in the regular season, earned his second shutout of this series. The AHL’s Baz Bastien Award winner made 15 of his 30 saves during a third period in which his club was outshot 15-7.
AHL All-Rookie goaltender Alex Stalock turned aside 24 of 25 shots for the Sharks in the losing effort.
Worcester, which went 26-11-2-1 on home ice during the regular year, fell to 2-3 at the DCU Center this postseason.
Atlantic Division Finals – Series “I” (best-of-7)
A1-Worcester Sharks vs. A3-Manchester Monarchs
Game 1 – Sun., Apr. 25 – WORCESTER 4, Manchester 3
Game 2 – Wed., Apr. 28 – Manchester 3, WORCESTER 2 (OT)
Game 3 – Fri., Apr. 30 – MANCHESTER 5, Worcester 0
Game 4 – Sat., May 1 – Worcester 3, MANCHESTER 2
Game 5 – Wed., May 5 – Manchester 1, WORCESTER 0
Game 6 – Fri., May 7 – Worcester at Manchester, 7:30
*Game 7 – Sat., May 8 – Manchester at Worcester, 7:05
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