Syracuse Crunch

Phantoms stun Crunch with 4-3 overtime win


By Jeremy Houghtaling

The game turned quickly.

Having shut down eight previous Adirondack Phantom power plays, the Syracuse Crunch clung to a 3-2 lead with less than two minutes remaining.

Brayden Schenn capitalized on a 6-on-3 with 1:02 left in regulation with Cal Heeter pulled from the Phantoms' net to tie the game and Brandon Manning found the back of the net on a 5-on-3 14 seconds into overtime as Adirondack stunned Syracuse with a 4-3 win at the Onondaga County War Memorial Sunday afternoon.

AHL Game Day: 10-28-12 Phantoms at Crunch

Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

ADK-4
SYR-3 (OT)

Riku Helenius allowed 4 goals on 29 shots for the overtime loss. He's struggled in his past couple of starts and currently checks in with a horrific .824 save percentage. Ouch.

First Period
SYR Connolly, (3) (Conacher), 8:21 (PP)

Second Period
ADK McGinn, (2) (Syvret, Schenn), 1:07
ADK McGinn, (3) (Schenn, Mangene), 8:45
SYR Killorn, (1) (Palat), 13:31
SYR Killorn, (2) (Taormina), 14:01 (PP)

Third Period
ADK Schenn, (4) (Couturier, Gustafsson), 18:58 (PP)

Overtime
ADK Manning, (2) (Schenn, Couturier), 0:14 (PP)

Alex Killorn (pictured) was named the game's second star. I got a question on the message boards about Alex Killorn's quiet start. Two goals and six points in his first seven games is nothing to sneeze at. On the list of things that concern me about the start of this season, J.T. Brown getting nicked up and Richard Panik having his photograph on the side of a milk carton rate quite a bit higher.

Syracuse came within 1:02 if taking a win against an Adirondack team that, on paper, looks to be one of the better teams in the conference. I liked the start, with Brett Connolly cashing a check he wrote in his interview after yesterday's game, and I liked Killorn bringing the team back after surrendering the lead in the first half of the second period. But, they got back on their heels a bit in the third period and didn't quite get that one more big save they needed. Welcome to the lockout version of the AHL, boys. You're going to have to up your game when protecting a lead when 1/4 of Adirondack's roster was playing in Flyers jerseys last year.

The rematch goes down Friday night in Adirondack.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

Crunch fall to Penguins, 4-1


By Jeremy Houghtaling

It took all of 38 seconds for the Syracuse Crunch to find the back of the net Saturday, but it was all downhill from there.

Seeing Brett Connolly and Alex Killorn crashing the net, Cory Conacher threw the puck on goal. After banking off one of the Wilkes-Barre Scranton Penguins defenders' skates, it slid past goalie Jeff Zatkoff.

"That was one good bounce we had all game," Conacher said.

AHL Game Day: 10-27-12 Penguins at Crunch

The Lightning's AHL affiliate suffers its first regulation regular season loss since the day of the Super Bowl.

WBS-4
SYR-1

Dustin Tokarski allowed 3 goals on 32 shots for his first regulation loss of the year. Your serve, Riku.

First Period
SYR Conacher, (5) (Killorn, Connolly), 0:38
WBS Tangradi, (3) (Grant), 14:10

Second Period
WBS Holzapfel, (2) (Gibbons, Reese), 5:35
WBS Bennett, (1) (Smith, Ferriero), 7:57 (PP)

Third Period
WBS Tangradi, (4) , 18:06 (EN)

Cory Conacher was the game's second star.

Coincidentally, the Norfolk Admirals also lost their first game of the season tonight, finally snapping that franchise's regular season win streak. Quite the run for both these players in Syracuse and that franchise down in The Commonwealth.

Syracuse gets Adirondack tomorrow afternoon, presumably with the big Finn Helenius between the pipes.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

Prospect of the Week: October 23, 2012

This week we continue our Prospect of the Week award, an honor (virtually) given to one Tampa Bay Lightning prospect for their recent contributions on and off the ice.

This week’s winner is no stranger to winning.

The Prospect of the Week for October 23 is … Dustin Tokarski, goaltender, Syracuse Crunch (AHL - USA)

Spoon!

Despite winning a Calder Cup last season, Lightning goaltending prospect Dustin “Tic” Tokarski wasn’t guaranteed anything when he moved with Tampa Bay’s affiliation from Norfolk to Syracuse. Even with a Calder Cup, World Juniors gold medal, Memorial Cup, Ed Chynoweth Cup (WHL), and Telus Cup (Canadian Midget-level hockey) on his resume, the Saskatchewan native had to outplay former Lightning first rounder and Finnish import Riku Helenius for the right to start the Crunch’s season-opening game.

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