Syracuse Crunch

Crunch Continue to Struggle at Home, Fall to Amerks

By Jeremy Houghtaling

Pierre-Cedric Labrie recalled looking at the scoreboard with 14 minutes remaining.

With the Syracuse Crunch trailing 3-2, the forward saw 23 listed as his team's shots on goal. Twelve minutes later -- and the Crunch now trailing by three to the Rochester Americans -- the number had only changed by one.

"We can't win the game (like that) if we're losing by two or three," Labrie said. "If you don't shoot, you don't score."

Syracuse's 5-2 loss at the Onondaga County War Memorial Saturday snapped a three-game winning streak overall, and was the third straight loss on home ice.

AHL Game Night: 11-10-12 Americans at Crunch

Helenius and the Crunch crumble in the third period.

RCH-5
SYR-2

Riku Helenius allowed 5 goals on 24 shots for the loss. He allowed 3 of those goals on 9 shots in the third period. Helenius looked to be back on the right track after a shutout in his last start, but he's been knocked back down to a 3.78 GAA and an ugly .852 sv% with this result.

First Period
NO SCORING

Second Period
RCH Tarnasky, (3) (Legault, Schofield), 5:28
SYR Panik, (4) (Devos, Killorn), 9:17 (PP)
RCH Rankin, (4) (Biega, Foligno), 12:16

Third Period
SYR Conacher, (7) (Palat, Nightingale), 3:45
RCH Foligno, (6) (Rankin, Flynn), 6:12
RCH Brennan, (6) (Mancari, Sundher), 9:38
RCH Flynn, (4) (Foligno, McNabb), 18:08

Richard Panik (pictured) was the game's second star. After a slow start to his season he now has 4 goals and 8 points in 11 games, and a 4 game points streak.

It's a tough thing to see Bolt Prospects Alumni Nick Tarnasky contribute for Rochester. Et tu, Tarnasty?

Syracuse faces Hershey next on Friday.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 11-9-12 Crunch at Bulldogs

The defense doesn't rest for the Crunch.

SYR-4
HAM-1

Dustin Tokarski allowed 1 goal on 14 shots for the win. Yes, 14 shots. That's getting a full game check for half the work. Thank your defense, Tic.

First Period
SYR Devos, (1) (Korobov, Gudas), 16:07

Second Period
HAM Quailer, (1) (Nattinen, Dumont), 2:07
SYR Angelidis, (4) (Wyman, Brown), 19:08

Third Period
SYR Johnson, (7) (Panik, Palat), 7:58
SYR Johnson, (8) (Panik, Gudas), 10:55

Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat were the game's first and second stars. Palat (pictured) is now tied for 3rd in the AHL in assists.

Panik attack, y'all. 2 helpers.

But, seriously. 14 shots? The Crunch already have an abnormal amount of offensive firepower. You're telling me they also have the ability to hold another professional team to 14 shots on goal defensively? Just give them the repeat now, if that's the case. It's just not fair to the rest of the league.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 11-7-12 Crunch at Bulldogs

Finland representing.

SYR-3
HAM-0

Riku Helenius (pictured) stopped all 23 shots he faced to post his second career AHL shutout.

First Period
NO SCORING

Second Period
SYR Korobov, (1) (Taormina), 6:01
SYR Wyman, (2) (Killorn, Gudas), 15:40

Third Period
SYR Panik, (3) (Palat), 18:14 (EN)

Helenius and Dmitry Korobov were the game's first and second stars, respectively. Korobov's goal was his first career AHL goal. It was originally awarded to forward J.T. Brown who was back in the lineup tonight after missing a couple of weeks of action. He was +2 with 3 shots on goal. Wait til the rust falls off.

Panik attack, y'all. Empty net style.

The real story is Helenius getting off the canvas, though, with his first AHL shutout since he was a rookie about four years ago. His season GAA and save percentage are still the dog's breakfast, but readers of this site last season know what Helenius did early in the season in the SM-liiga last year when he turned one shutout into bunches of shutouts. It's a good omen for the Crunch.

Syracuse wraps up the two game set against Hamilton on Friday in Montreal.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

JT Brown Anxious to Resume Pro Career

By Jeremy Houghtaling

JT Brown was just getting his feet wet in the National Hockey League.

In the final game of the 2011-12 regular season – his fifth game since the free agent collegian chose the Tampa Bay Lightning – the highly sought-after prospect registered an assist for his first professional point.

But more importantly, the short time in Tampa gave Brown a taste of the NHL lifestyle, the speed of the game, and the coaching systems.

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