Gudlevskis, Kristers

AHL Game Night: 12-19-14 Crunch at Wolf Pack

The yak is still on the loose.

SYR-2
HFD-0

Kristers Gudlevskis stopped all 24 shots he faced for the victory and his first shutout of the campaign. He's won his last 4 starts allowing just 3 total goals in the last 3 of those starts, while running his season save percentage back up to .906 in the process. Now things get very interesting in Syracuse, once Vasilevskiy returns, because this is what we expected coming into the year. These are two of the best prospect netminders around, and they'll be in a knock-down, drag-out for starts all season long. The competition is going to push both guys to play better than they ever thought possible. It's going to be great to see unfold.

First Period
NO SCORING

Second Period
SYR Richard, (5) (Koekkoek), 2:12
SYR Namestnikov, (3) (Nesterov, Marchessault)

Third Period
NO SCORING

Gudlevskis and Tanner Richard were the game's first and second stars. As of this posting, Richard's +18 mark is second best in the AHL behind the +21 of Manchester's Nick Shore. I should also point out that, on top of the game winning helper he had tonight, Nikita Nesterov hasn't had a minus game in a full month, when he had a -1 outing on 11/19 against Hartford. He's been +9 since that game, taking him up to +9 for the year. He was -2 last year and the 13 points he has in 28 games this season is 3 off the 16 he posted as a rookie in 54 games last season. So, like Richard, here's a player who had some holes in his game who seems to be rounding the corner a bit. Nice to see. Slater Koekkoek, oh by the way, has helpers in 3 of the last 4 games.

Tomorrow, Syracuse draws Albany at home.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 12-17-14 Crunch at Americans

The Killer G's.

SYR-3
RCH-2

Kristers Gudlevskis allowed 2 goals on 29 shots for the victory. That's two straight quality starts for Kristers since Vasilevskiy started to show his Latvian tandem-mate his tail lights, and he squared his save percentage away at exactly .900 with his effort tonight.

First Period
SYR Paradis, (7) (Mormina, Gourde), 1:19
RCH Ellis, (7) (McCabe, Pysyk), 18:20 (PP)

Second Period
SYR Gourde, (12) (Richard, Koekkoek), 5:24
RCH Ruhwedel, (6) (Irwin), 11:28 (PP)

Third Period
SYR Blunden, (4) (Angelidis, Kunyk), 2:14

Yanni Gourde and Mike Blunden were the game's first and second stars. Gourde, who along with Gudlevskis was the other Killer G in tonight's contest, is now tied for 3rd in the league in goals, as of this posting. He's just 2 back of the league leader right now and is doing his best to be the next diminutive, undrafted Lightning gem, following in the footsteps of Conacher and Johnson before him.

Here's a stat that you could've won a lot of money with before this season: Tanner Richard is tied for second in the league in +/- right now at +17. His point tonight helped him match his scoring totals from all of last season (17 points) in 38 less games, and his +/- has improved dramatically from the -9 mark he posted last year. The light has come on for the pesky Richard, who looks to fit a future role as a two-way third liner who can create as a playmaker and has a little bit of instigator's edge to him, too.

Syracuse's win moves them into a tie with Springfield for the division lead at 37 points and they currently sit at second in the Eastern Conference by virtue of this 7-game winning streak/magic carpet ride they're on. Although they don't yet have the ridiculously good defensive stats and goal differential, this is starting to take on the appearance of one of the old Jon Cooper teams: long winning streaks, plenty of goals, and also, at this moment, tied for second in the league in penalty minutes, too. Fast, talented, and rough and tough when they need to be.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 12-13-14 Crunch at Comets

Gudlevskis responds.

SYR-2
UTI-1 (OT)

Kristers Gudlevskis allowed 1 goal on 29 shots for the OT win, rebounding from giving up 4 or more goals in each of his previous 3 starts. Gudlevskis saw the Vasilevskiy train leaving the station, and didn't want to be left behind. Big plus for the Crunch that he stepped up tonight.

First Period
NO SCORING

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
UTI DeFazio, (9) (Tommernes, Sanguinetti), 15:09
SYR Angelidis, (10) (Ikonen, Mormina), 17:49

Overtime
SYR Gourde, (11) (Richard, Mormina), 6:00

Gudlevskis and Yanni Gourde were the game's first and second stars. Also, very quietly, Henri Ikonen has 1 goal and 3 points in the last 2 games. That matches his statistical output from all of November.

The Crunch's win pulls them within 2 points of division and conference leading Springfield, which lost to Norfolk tonight. Syracuse has 2 games in hand on the Falcons, and they can move into a tie with Springfield on Wednesday when they square off against Rochester.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 12-5-14 Wolf Pack at Crunch

Crunch outlast Wolf Pack.

HFD-5
SYR-6

Kristers Gudlevskis got the "W" despite allowing 5 goals on 35 shots.

First Period
SYR Namestnikov, (1) (Marchessault, Nesterov), 0:59 (PP)
SYR Angelidis, (7) (Smith, Gourde), 3:26
SYR Vermin, (6) (Nesterov, Namestnikov), 3:44
SYR Dotchin, (1) (Blujus, Richard), 13:34 (PP)
SYR Gourde, (10) (Richard, Paradis), 16:34

Second Period
HFD Haggerty, (5) (Lindberg, R. Bourque), 1:55 (PP)
HFD Nehring, (1) (Nicholls, Jackson), 3:49
HFD Malone, (1) (R. Bourque, Mueller), 9:37

Third Period
HFD Kristo, (6) (C. Bourque, Kostka), 4:02 (PP)
SYR Angelidis, (8) (Namestnikov, Marchessault), 6:11 (PP)
HFD C. Bourque, (8) (Bodie, Kristo), 7:50 (PP)

Mike Angelidis, Vladislav Namestnikov, and Yanni Gourde were the game's three stars.

There's simply no excuse to almost squander a 5 goal lead, and while Syracuse continues to scores goals at an accelerated clip they continue to struggle keeping it out of their own net.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 11-28-14 Senators at Crunch

Bingo crushes Crunch in Third Period fiasco.

BNG-6
SYR-3

Kristers Gudlevskis allowed 5 goals on 32 shots for the victory. At some point, patience wears thin waiting for what should be one of the better goaltending tandems in the AHL to play like it.

First Period
BNG Schneider, (5) (Johnson, Guptill), 8:16
BNG Schneider, (6) (Pageau, Johnson), 10:41
SYR Paradis, (3) (Gourde, Richard), 11:10
SYR Paradis, (4) (Dotchin, Richard), 13:29
SYR Paradis, (5) , 15:52 (SH/PS)

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
BNG Prince, (7) , 1:50
BNG Prince, (8) (D. Grant), 8:00 (PP)
BNG D. Grant, (6) (Prince, A. Grant), 17:10
BNG Dziurzynski, (1) (McCormick), 19:14 (EN)

Philippe Paradis was the game's first star and had a natural hat trick. Wasted.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 11-21-14 Crunch at Flames

All good things...

SYR-1
ADK-4

Kristers Gudlevskis allowed 4 goals on 34 shots for the loss.

First Period
ADK Wolf, (3) (Vause, Wotherspoon), 0:13

Second Period
SYR Witkowski, (1) (Richard, Kunyk), 17:42
ADK Vause, (1) (Poirier, Wolf), 19:58

Third Period
ADK Reid, (2) (Cundari), 11:56 (PP)
ADK Poirier, (4) (Cundari, Reid), 16:56 (PP)

Syracuse's points streak is snapped at 8 games. Hard to believe Adirondack could withstand deployment of the secret weapon, Luke Witkowski, but the goal allowed with 2 seconds left in the Second Period ended up being a killer. Goals early and late in periods...

Yanni Gourde's point streak was also snapped at 6 games.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 11-15-14 Crunch at Penguins

Syracuse movin' on up.

SYR-3
WBS-2

Kristers Gudlevskis allowed 2 goals on 29 shots for the victory. He kept his team in the game and gave them the opportunity to make, and complete, the comeback bid.

First Period
WBS Sheary, (4) (Rowney, Dumoulin), 12:33
WBS Ebbett, (4) (Wilson, Pouliot), 13:38 (PP)

Second Period
SYR Gourde, (4) (Koekkoek, Paradis), 16:41

Third Period
SYR Gourde, (5) (Nesterov, Marchessault), 2:16 (PP)
SYR Angelidis, (4) (Dotchin), 10:11

Yanni Gourde and Mike Angelidis were the game's first and third stars. Gourde now has 5 goals and 9 points in 7 games this month.

The Pens held the top spot in the Northeast Division coming into the game, 2 points ahead of Syracuse. So, the Crunch move into a tie with Wilkes-Barre Scranton at 19 points, and with Albany losing tonight the Crunch will hold a share of the division lead at the end of the night. They'll also have another key divisional matchup Wednesday in Hartford.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Day: 11-12-14 Crunch at Devils

The Gourde and Richard Show rolls on.

SYR-3
ALB-2 (SO)

Kristers Gudlevskis allowed 2 goals on 22 shots and stopped 2 of 3 in the penalty shot session for the SO win.

First Period
ALB Timmins, (5) (Thompson), 1:06
SYR Gourde, (3) , 4:49

Second Period
SYR Vermin, (4) (Dotchin, Marchessault), 2:52

Third Period
ALB Sestito, (3) (Scarlett), 2:44

Overtime
NONE

Shootout
SYR- Gourde, Richard
ALB- Thompson

Joel Vermin and Tanner Richard were the game's first and third stars. After posting just 1 point in 8 games in the month of October, Yanni Gourde had 3 goals and 6 points in 5 games in November. Richard, who faced the same futility at the scoresheet in October, has 2 goals and 5 points in 5 games this month, and obviously had the shootout winner tonight.

I also remain pleasantly surprised by the production of some of the Lightning's middle-tier rookie blueliners. Both Dylan Blujus and Jake Dotchin continue to hover around a half a point a game and are on the plus side of the ledger for the year.

With the win, Syracuse climbs into 8th place in the Eastern Conference, just 2 points back of division leaders Hartford and Bridgeport. Syracuse faces Hershey next on Friday.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 11-8-14 Admirals at Crunch

Turning point of the early season?

NOR-4
SYR-5

Kristers Gudlevskis allowed 4 goals on 27 shots for the win. He wasn't good, and gave up a couple of questionable goals. But, the Crunch had his back in the Third Period tonight.

First Period
NOR Theodore, (2) (Wagner, Sarault), 5:47 (PP)
NOR Theodore, (3) (Winchester), 15:10 (PP)

Second Period
SYR Marchessault, (5) , 6:15 (PS)
NOR Leblanc, (2) (Sarault, Kerdiles), 15:32
NOR Blacker, (1) (Steckel, O'Brien), 17:29

Third Period
SYR Smith, (3) (Angelidis, Koekkoek), 3:51
SYR Gourde, (1) (Richard), 4:32
SYR Smith, (4) (Cote, Blujus), 14:38
SYR Gourde, (2) (Richard, Paradis), 15:23

Yanni Gourde, Dalton Smith, and Jonathan Marchessault were the game's three stars. Gourde gets the monkey off his back in a big way after not potting a goal all season by getting 2, including the game winner.

Being down 3 goals in the Third Period in pro hockey is supposed to be a death sentence. Teams in that position seem to lose 98-99% of the time. It's a rare and sometimes galvanizing thing if a team can come back against those odds, and a hugely demoralizing thing to the team that blows that kind of lead. So, for Syracuse to overcome those odds tonight is no small thing, and is likely to give them some momentum as a team that they can carry forward from here on out into the season. Big, big win.

I'd also be remiss if I didn't point out the role Tanner Richard played in the comeback, as the next wave of Lightning prospects starts to step it up.

#blujuspalooza

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 11-1-14 Crunch at Senators

Floodgates.

SYR-6
BNG-3

Kristers Gudlevskis allowed 3 goals on 28 shots for the victory. Goal support: Kristers has it, tonight.

First Period
NO SCORING

Second Period
SYR Marchessault, (3) (Dotchin, Paquette), 1:38
SYR Koekkoek, (1) (Blujus, Richard), 9:05 (PP)
BNG Pageau, (3) (Wideman, Robinson), 10:23
BNG Puempel, (2) (Dzingel), 12:26

Third Period
SYR Kunyk, (2) (Paradis, Gourde), 3:06
SYR Vermin, (3) , 4:39
BNG Wideman, (7) (Mullen), 6:48 (PP)
SYR Smith, (2) (Dotchin), 12:13
SYR Paquette, (4) (Vermin), 17:05

Joel Vermin and Cedric Paquette were the game's first and second stars. Defenseman Slater Koekkoek scored his first AHL goal in the contest, as well. And, there was #blujuspalooza happening on that goal, too.

They really faced down a hot goaltender last night, which happens, and were unfortunate to get shut out, but the scoreboard wasn't indicative of the team's play. They were doing a lot of the right things to snap their offensive funk, and the floodgates finally came open for them tonight. Hopefully they stay open now even if Paquette has to go back to the Lightning with Alex Killorn getting hurt again up top.

Syracuse gets Norfolk on Friday.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

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