Titans Fall to Express, 4-3
Pierre-Luc Faubert put the ECHL North-leading Express (11-5-1-1) in the lead when he scored on a short-handed goal with 5:51 left in the first period. The physicality of Saturday’s match up between Trenton and Chicago spilled over into the Sunday afternoon game. Titans defenseman Chris Berenguer was knocked out of the game in opening minutes when he caught an elbow to the face.
Trenton (7-10-1-0) was unable to capitalize on three power play opportunities in the first period. The Titans found themselves in a 2-0 hole when Bobby Robins deflected a Darcy Campbell slapshot with 1:13 left in the opening period on an Express power play.
The Titans were led by Rob Bordson opened the second period with aggressive play. Bordson put the Titans on the scoreboard when he captured the puck on a skirmish and lifted a wrist shot to the top corner 3:12 into the period.
“We got some pretty good shots but the pucks weren’t going in,” Bordson explained. “Their goalie played really well. We just needed to execute a little better, we had chances.”
Any momentum the Titans gained from Bordson’s play was quelled when Scott Wietecha put a slapshot past Dave Caruso three minutes later. Chicago only got two shots on cage in the second period, but were able to capitalize despite minimal opportunities.
Caruso explained how its difficult to remain in the game when the action is on the other side.
“All you try to do is stay mentally sharp,” he said. “They’re a good team so even though they don’t get many shots, they’re going to be good.”
Andy Bombach took a feed from Bordson and narrowed the deficit to one when his wrist shot went past Rob Nolan 9:47 into the second period. The Titans dominated the rest of the second period with a handful of flurries infront of Chicago’s net but were unable to level the scoreboard.
Titan coach Vince Williams talked about the Titan’s inability to finish.
“We outshot them and if we capitalized at the right time it would have been different,” he said. “We just needed to execute a little better. [Chicago] is a mentally and physically tough team, we needed to capitalize.”
Robins put the Express up 4-2 when he came around the right side from behind the net and squeezed a shot inside the pipe. The goal occurred 59 seconds into the period and set the tempo for the remainder of the game.
Trenton couldn’t mount sustained offense and turned the puck over too many times in the game’s final stanza. The Titans first shot of the period came at the halfway mark.
“Losing Berenguer really hurt us,” Williams said. “With him out we go down to five defensmen. Which makes it hard for us to push the puck because it all starts with the defense.”
Bordson was awarded the third star of the game and scored his second goal of the day with 15 seconds remaining on a power play.
He remains optimistic on the direction the Titans are heading despite Sunday’s loss.
“Our team is starting to click. It’s a long season and we need to put this one behind us,” he said. “We made up for a bad first month by having a good November. We’re taking steps in the right direction."
The Titans travel to Elmira to face the Jackals next Friday.