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With apologies to Tony Stark — aka Iron Man — there’s more to the Newfoundland Growlers’ powers these days than just the uniforms.
The Growlers crept to within four points of the overall ECHL lead Sunday, with a 1-0 overtime win over Fort Wayne at Mile One Centre, closing out a highly-entertaining three-game set with the Indiana-based Komets.
Newfoundland won the series-opener Friday night in a shootout, while Fort Wayne took Saturday’s game in overtime.
Perhaps it was the duds which helped the Growlers slip past the Komets Sunday, as Newfoundland’s Iron Man did battle with Fort Wayne’s Captain America.
It was all part of the ECHL’s Marvel Super Hero Night with each team decked out in jerseys provided by the league, and auctioned live during the game.
It’s part of the ECHL’s marketing and promotions campaign, which also includes a partnership with Nickelodeon.
Earlier this season, the Growlers wore special Paw Patrol jerseys featuring Chase, a character from the cartoon, in a game against Brampton.
Before 4,039 Sunday afternoon, Matt Bradley scored his 12th goal of the season 1:19 into the extra session to make a winner of Eamon McAdam once again.
Bradley combined with Zach O’Brien and Sam Jardine, recently assigned to the Growlers from the American Hockey League’s Toronto Marlies, to provide the Growlers with their 32nd win this season, against 14 losses and three overtime losses.
McAdam stopped all 33 shots he faced, following a 25-save effort Friday. Eric Levine, who appeared in three games for the Growlers this season before hooking on with the Komets, stopped 31 of 32 shots.
For O’Brien, the St. John’s native, it was his fifth straight game in which he picked up at least one point (two goals, four assists).
On Saturday, it was the Komets who got the extra point as Marco Roy scored 46 seconds after the drop of the puck to start OT.
All scoring in regulation came about in the second period, with O’Brien scoring twice for Newfoundland, his 18th and 19th goals on the year. Jamie Schaafsma had both Fort Wayne goals.
Michael Garteig got the start in goal for the Growlers, and made 28 saves.
Friday night, McAdam allowed only one goal in the shootout, while teammates Brady Ferguson and Scott Pooley were successful at the other end of the rink as the Growlers opened the series with a 3-2 win over the Komets.
Veteran defenceman Adam Pardy and rookie D-man Kristians Rubins scored for the Growlers in regulation time, while J.C. Campagna had a pair for the Komets. Campagna’s goal at 10:18 of the third period, the only goal in the final frame, forced a five-minute three-on-three OT and eventually a shootout.
The Growlers, who trail the league-leading Florida Everblades by four points in the Eastern Conference, lead the North Division by eight points over the Adirondack Thunder.
They closed out their most recent seven-game homestand with a 4-2-1 record.
The Growlers hit the road for five games, beginning Wednesday night in Atlanta. Newfoundland also plays in North Charleston and Greenville, S.C. and two games in Brampton, Ont.