Josh Morrissey was going to get a goal eventually. He just didn't know it would come in the playoffs.
Morrissey scored his first goal as a pro to help the St. John's IceCaps beat the Norfolk Admirals 2-1 to tie their series at one Wednesday night in American Hockey League playoff action.
"It's pretty nice, for sure," Morrissey said. "I've had some really good chances here in the last couple of games and I'm getting a lot more confident. I guess I knew sooner or later it would come (but) it's nice to get it tonight."
IceCaps head coach Keith McCambridge is happy with the play of the 19-year-old defenceman.
"He has earned the trust of the coaching staff and, just as importantly, his teammates," said McCambridge. "He's a young, top-end prospect. Throughout the playoffs he has been strong for us. He was picked in the first round for a reason. He's a good player and he's going to continue to get better."
Morrissey said that knowing his coach is behind him has helped his confidence.
"It's awesome for them to have that confidence in me. The players and coaches have made me feel comfortable since (I have been) here. They have really helped me adapt to the level of play. It's a lot easier to play when you're comfortable."
Both goals on power play
The IceCaps scored both of their goals on the power play, which was an important factor in the win according to McCambridge.
"We all know that special teams are a huge piece of being able to win games in the playoffs, so for us to be able to capitalize on those chances was obviously a big part of this game," said McCambridge. "Those power plays, some games they are clicking and other games you have to try and make adjustments."
Jason Jaffray also scored for the IceCaps, while Chris Wagner had the lone goal for the Admirals.
Morrissey broke the deadlock when he carried the puck over the blue-line and down the left wing before ripping a high wrist shot blocker side 2:48 into the second period on the power play.
Jaffray doubled the IceCaps lead when he spun with his back to the net and unloaded a wrist shot into the back of the net on another power play nearly three minutes later.
IceCaps goalie Michael Hutchinson saved his team from penalty trouble late in the second. Hutchinson came up big with a glove save on Matt Bailey, who wired a shot while wide open in the slot.
Wagner brought the Admirals within one when he banged in a goal on the doorstep on the power play 10:05 into the third period after David Steckel threw the puck into the crease.
Hutchinson finished with 32 saves while Admirals goalie John Gibson stopped 39.