Pirates jump ahead of Pack

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HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – Ryan Shannon scored three goals as the Portland Pirates beat the Hartford Wolf Pack 6-2 in the opener of the American Hockey League’s Atlantic Division finals Tuesday night.

Game 2 of the best-of-seven series is Thursday night in Hartford. Geoff Peters and Shannon scored in the opening 14:52 before Alexandre Giroux got the Wolf Pack to within 2-1 off a pass from Brad Smyth at 15:26.

Shannon made it 3-1 when he converted Igor Pohanka’s rebound at 15:32 of the second period, but the Wolf Pack’s Dwight Helminen scored off Thomas Pock’s rebound on a power play 46 seconds later.

The Pirates, who won the regular season division title, regained a two-goal lead as Curtis Glencross backhanded in Aaron Gavey’s rebound at 1:33 of the third period.

Zenon Konopka, whose assist on Peters’ goal extended his points streak to 19 games, made it 5-2 at 9:59 on a power play, then Shannon completed his hat trick into an empty net with 1:08 left.

Jani Hurme had 34 saves for the Pirates.

Chris Holt made 33 saves for the Wolf Pack.

AP-ES-05-02-06 2133EDT

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