PORTLAND — Portland Pirates goalie Jhonas Enroth was unhappy with his performance Saturday night in a 6-5 victory against the Manchester Monarchs in the season opener.

The slightly built goalie from Sweden showed exactly how well he can play Monday afternoon.

Enroth stopped the first 42 shots by the Columbus Checkers to lead the Pirates to a 5-1 victory before a small Columbus Day crowd of 2,621 at the Cumberland County Civic Center.

“I just wanted to come back and play well and show everybody here what I can do and show my teammates that I can come back as well,” he said.

Enroth, in his third season with the Pirates, lost his bid for a shutout when Jerome Samson jammed in a power-play goal with 11 seconds to play.

“Our goalie was really, really good early on,” Coach Kevin Dineen said. “The game had some seesaw to it. I thought (Charlotte) held the pace of play, and Jhonas was making those saves, giving us a chance to (regroup).”

Portland managed to take only one shot on goal during the first 10 minutes, but that shot gave it a lead it never relinquished.

Mark Parrish, a veteran of 11 NHL seasons in his first season with the Pirates, used some big-time moves to open the scoring less than two minutes into the game.

After receiving a pass from defenseman T.J. Brennan, Parrish skated into the zone and threaded his way between two defenders before lifting a shot from just below the hash marks past goalie Justin Pogge.

“I was just coming through the neutral zone with speed, and (Brennan) put the puck out in front of me,” Parrish said. “I just kept my speed. It happened so quick the goalie didn’t have a chance to come out and challenge me.”

Less than five minutes into the second period, rookie defenseman Nick Crawford turned Parrish’s feed from across the slot into his first AHL goal on a shot from the left hash mark.

“It was a great pass,” Crawford said.

“I think he put it through a guy’s legs to get it to me. I found a corner, and I put it in.”

With five minutes left in the second period, Paul Bryan, a forward in his second AHL season, knocked a rebound into the left side of the net for Portland’s second short-handed goal of the season to make it 3-0.

After just stepping out of the penalty box, Mark Mancari scored his second goal of the season on a breakaway less than a minute into the third period.

About five minutes later, rookie Maxime Legault scored his first professional goal on a shot from the middle of the left circle to make it 5-0.


NOTES: After scoring two goals and registering two assists in the opener, Portland’s rookie forward Luke Adam was named AHL player of the week. Defenseman Marc-Andre Gragnani, who missed nearly a month of training camp because of a knee injury, skated in the pregame warm-up.

Felix Schutz, who spent by the past two seasons with Portland, will join former Pirates Tyler Bouck, Bruno St. Jacques, Joe Motzko and Colin Forbes with the Ingolstadt Panthers in the German Elite League. Checkers rookie right wing Jared Staal is the younger brother of Carolina Hurricanes forward Eric Staal, New York Rangers defenseman Marc Staal and Pittsburgh Penguins forward Jordan Staal.


Staff Writer Paul Betit can be contacted at 791-6424 or at: [email protected]