Giliati up to his old tricks

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Lewiston Maineiacs’ coach Clem Jodoin would prefer his team not to play short-handed too often, but it’s nice to know that in the last two games, the Maineiacs have scored more while short-handed than the St. John’s Fog Devils have scored on the power play.

Stefano Giliati capped a hat trick with his seventh and eighth short-handed goals of the season in the third period Thursday to lead the Maineiacs past the Fog Devils 6-1 in front of 3,175 at Mile One Stadium.

“His speed, his speed kills,” Maineiacs coach Clem Jodoin said after the game. “He can skate faster than most defensemen, and he beats them to the puck.”

Chris Tutalo found his comfort zone again after being apart from his usual linemates for a few weeks while Marc-Andre Cliche was gone with Team Canada. Tutalo added a pair of goals in the Lewiston rout, and Simon Courcelles scored his third in two games.

“The lines, they all had a chemistry, and now that they are back together, they have that back,” Jodoin said.

Rookie Peter Delmas started Thursday’s game in lieu of Jonathan Bernier, who was yanked after the second period Tuesday with flu-like symptoms. Jodoin said Bernier will sit tonight’s final game in St. John’s, too, with what he said was an enlarged spleen.

In his stead, Delmas turned aside several good scoring chances early and held the Maineiacs’ big lead late.

“He was very solid,” Jodoin said. “He stood up, he was out at the top of his crease, he was challenging shooters.”

Lewiston, which fell behind by three goals in the opening period Tuesday, held off the Fog Devils’ early advances Thursday, and finished the period with a flourish.

Tutalo converted a feed from David Perron into a goal at 19:06 of the period to give the Maineiacs their first lead of the series, and Courcelles scored just 23 seconds later to lift Lewiston to a 2-0 lead going into the first intermission.

St. John’s cut the lead in half early in the second on a Matt Fillier power play goal at 3:07 on a feed from Wes Welcher. That goal came on the heels of two big saves by Delmas on a pair of point-blank attempts by the Fog Devils.

The Maineiacs struck right back, though, on goals from Giliati and Tutalo and took a 4-1 lead into the second break.

“That wasn’t completely out of reach, but it was good to get that lead,” Jodoin said. “This was a better performance as a team.”

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