LEWISTON — The Portland Pirates’ tenure at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee ended Wednesday in familiarity: A small crowd, a solid, yet inconsistent effort on the ice — and a shootout loss.

“I didn’t like our second period tonight. I thought we had a good first and a good third,” Pirates coach Ray Edwards said. “They pushed in the second. We didn’t respond very well.”

Lucas Lessio pulled the Pirates even with a nifty tip-in to the right of Albany Devils keeper Keith Kinkaid on a feed from Brandon Gormley at 7:19 on a power play and the team’s defense held strong from there to force overtime.

“To score late on the power play like that, it’s good to see,” Edwards said. “They could have been frustrated, and they stuck with it.”

But extra sessions haven’t been friendly to the Pirates this season. Portland has gone 6-13 in 19 OT or shootout contests, including 2-9 in shootouts at the Colisee.

“These last couple shootouts, I think we’ve scored what, one goal in 10?” Edwards said. “It’s tough to win them like that.”

Wednesday’s extra session including a pair of good chances for the Pirates, and some nice saves from Portland keeper Mark Visentin at the other end. But neither team found the back of the net.

In the shootout, captain Jordan Szwarz scored for Portland in the second round, but Stefan Matteau and Mike Sislo scored in the third and fourth rounds for the Devils to secure a victory.

The Devils clinched a berth in the playoffs with the victory.

“We have four or five guys back from the NHL now, so we really think we can go pretty far,” Albany defenseman and former Lewiston Maineiac Eric Gelinas said.

The Pirates will play their final game of the regular season at the MHG Ice Centre in Saco after a scheduling conflict at the Colisee with the Kora Shrine Circus. The team’s new lease with the Cumberland County Civic Center begins next season, and the lease precludes the Pirates from playing regular-season games anywhere but their home rink.

“It’s fitting that we play our last game of this season at our practice rink, I guess,” Edwards said. “It is what it is.”

That said, Edwards was also quick to mention the support the team received in Lewiston.

“It’s important to thank to people here in Lewiston, too,” Edwards said. “The people here at the building, Jim (Cain) and Mike (Cain). That was laid on them at the last minute, as well, and we’d like to thank them for giving us a home. Who know what would have happened if we didn’t have that.

“We also want to thank the folks who came out and supported us through the year,” Edwards added. “Again, I wish we could have been better for them, but we just weren’t.”

The Pirates broke through in the first minute of the second period, when Hobey Baker finalist and former St. Lawrence University standout Greg Carey netted his first professional goal with help from Tim Kennedy and Szwarz.

Reid Boucher potted his 22nd of the season for the Devils at 6:03 to even things up after a feed from the right corner from Mattias Tedenby, who used a screen created by a pair of Pirates to spring Boucher.

Dan Kelly gave the visitors their first lead of the night at 17:02 with a blast from the top of the slot through a mass of bodies in front of Visentin. The screened Portland keeper stayed in his crouch as the puck flew untouched and into the cage.


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