by Marko Ukalovic
LAS VEGAS, Nev—Pavel Dorofeyev scored two goals for the Henderson Silver Knights as they defeated the San Jose Barracuda 5-3 on Saturday afternoon at T-Mobile Arena.
San Jose have lost three games in a row and continue to sit in fourth place in the Pacific Division. Henderson have won two in a row and sit atop of the Pacific with 46 points.
San Jose (15-14-4-2) drew first blood early in the first period with an even strength goal. Nicolas Meloche started a three-on-two odd man rush and fed a pass over to Ozzy Wiesblatt at the Silver Knights blueline. Wiesblatt found Scott Reedy all alone on the right wing and he snapped home a wrist shot past Silver Knights goalie Oscar Dansk to the short side off the post for his fifth goal of the season at the 4:22 mark.
Henderson (23-12-0-0) answered back over two minutes later on the power play. Danny O’Regan picked up the puck behind the net after a battle along the boards. The former San Jose Sharks prospect skated out to the left slot and fired home a wrist shot to the short side of ‘Cuda goalie Zachary Sawchenko for his team leading 13th goal of the season at the 6:30 mark.
O’Regan has tormented his former team all season long with his fifth goal against the Barracuda. He has 12 points in his last eight games.
The Silver Knights gained the lead when Dorofeyev scored his first goal of the game. Zach Hayes sent a shot in from the left point that snuck underneath and behind Zawchenko. Dorofeyev crashed the net and jammed home the rebound for his seventh goal of the season at the 12:37 mark.
Henderson scored its third unanswered goal of the game early in the second period. Ryan Murphy fed a pass over to Dylan Sikura whose shot popped up in the air and went behind Sawchenko. Cody Glass whacked the puck out of the air into the back of the net for his fourth goal of the season at the 4:05 mark.
The Barracuda came back and answered back 95 seconds later. Ryan Merkley sent a shot from the point that was blocked out in front. The rebound leaked out to Maxim Letunov who buried a wrist shot under the arm of Dansk for his 12th goal of the season at the 5:40 mark.
Letunov has scored in back-to-back games and has three goals in his past four games.
Dorofeyev gave the Silver Knights a huge insurance goal early in the third period with his second goal of the game seconds after their power play opportunity had expired. Gage Quinney set up Dorofeyev right in front of the crease and he tapped home the puck past Sawchenko for his eighth goal of the season at the 2:05 mark.
San Jose cut the lead to a one-goal game with a five-on-three power play goal right after Henderson’s fourth goal. Jayden Halbgewachs’ shot rebounded over to Wiesblatt who skated out to the right face off circle, outwaited Dansk and snapped home a wrist shot top-shelf for his second goal of the season at the 4:04 mark.
It was a pair of firsts for the Sharks 2020 first round draft pick. He scored his first power play goal as well as his first multi-point game of his careeer.
The ‘Cuda pulled Sawchenko for an extra attacker with 1:53 left in the third period but Jack Dugan ended their comeback attempt with an empty net goal with 29 seconds remaining for his ninth goal of the season.
Dansk finished the game stopping 27 of the 30 shots he faced, including three consecutive point blank saves while the ‘Cuda were on the five-on-three penalty kill, to earn the victory. Sawchenko made 35 saves on 39 shots in the losing effort.
GAME NOTES: Both San Jose and Henderson went 1-for-5 on the power play.
The Three Stars of the Game were: 1) Dorofeyev 2) Glass 3) Sikura
The announced attendance was 3831.
UP NEXT: The Barracuda conclude the regular season against the Silver Knights on Tuesday 5/11 at 7:00pm at Orleans Arena.