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AHL Game Night: 3-10-18 Americans at Crunch

Crunch ride Joseph back into the win column.

RCH-2
SYR-4

Eddie Pasquale allowed 2 goals on 23 shots for the victory.

First Period
NO SCORING

Second Period
5:24 SYR Joseph (12), (Volkov, Dumont)
8:05 RCH Fedun (3), (Cornel, Porter)(PP)
12:06 SYR Thomas (4), (Archambault, Yan)
15:55 SYR Walcott (3), (Dumont, Condra)

Third Period
4:01 RCH Porter (16), (Percy, Fedun)(PP)
19:08 SYR Joseph (13), (Condra)(EN)

Mathieu Joseph, Pasquale, and Daniel Walcott were the game's three stars.

Syracuse is six points back of Toronto for the top spot in the North Division with the Marlies holding two games in hand. Toronto has clinched a playoff berth and Syracuse will be looking to do the same shortly over the next week or two.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

Big Second Period Lifts Crunch over Americans


By Jeremy Houghtaling

After a scoreless first period, things started to click for the Syracuse Crunch offense.

The Crunch scored three times in the middle frame — including a pair from players not necessarily known for their scoring prowess — as the Crunch beat the Rochester Americans, 4-2, at the Onondaga County War Memorial Saturday.

“We started connecting,” Crunch forward Daniel Walcott said. “We got a good bounce off (Mathieu Joseph’s) leg and the floodgates opened. We just kept shooting on him. We knew he left a lot of rebounds, we just had to capitalize. We put pucks on net and we got some goals.”

NHL Game Day: 3-10-18 Canadiens at Lightning

The pre-postseason began today.

MTL-2
TB-3 (SO)

Louis Domingue allowed 2 goals on 29 shots before stopping 3 of 4 in the penalty shot session for the SO win. He was very good in this game and, while I don't get a vote in these things, I feel like he's clearly won the backup job in Budaj's absence and deserves to keep it.

First Period
4:10 MTL Lehkonen (6), (Hudon, Reilly)(PP)
13:43 TB Johnson (20), (Sergachev, Gourde)(PP)

Second Period
3:00 MTL Galchenyuk (16), (Hudon)

Third Period
13:43 TB Kucherov (34), (Stamkos, Miller)

Overtime
NO SCORING

Shootout
MTL- Drouin
TB- Point, Kucherov

Tyler Johnson and J.T. Miller were the game's first and third stars.

After a week or two of playing with an improvised, standby lineup the Lightning finally got to debut a healthy Ryan McDonagh this afternoon (even in 19:15 of hockey). So, after this game, Tampa Bay now has 13 games to tune up their lineup and get everyone settled into their roles ahead of the playoffs. Call this the pre-postseason. Today's pre-postseason contest featured a little bit of a flat, sleepy start for the Lightning against a shockingly bad on offense Montreal side that continues to struggle to find the back of the net. I don't know if it was planned that way, but if I was going to choose where to debut McDonagh to try to inspire confidence against a run of 80's hockey style scoring fests, this would've been the one to do it in. Overall the defense has been better the past couple of games with room yet to improve. One of the quiet contributors to that, in my opinion, has been the recall of Jake Dotchin from Chateau au Bow Wow. Bottom line: the Ligtning's issues on defense on the right side still exist so they need Dotchin to start playing like he did down the stretch of last season. It makes everything else slot out better for this team, especially if the Lightning (I hope) eventually swap Stralman onto McDonagh's pair in lieu of Dan Girardi who probably shouldn't be playing second pair minutes 5v5 in the playoffs at this stage of his career.

Other things I don't get a vote on: if there's a way for the Lightning to get out from under Killorn's contract to keep J.T. Miller on the team they should find it.

Tampa Bay hits 100 points with 13 games left to go in the campaigns. Many club records are about to go down and go down hard.

Anthony Cirelli was -1 with 1 shot and 1 hit in 10:45. He was also 17% on 6 draws.

Adam Erne had 4 penalty minutes, 2 shots, and 3 hits in 9:49. At least one of those hits was of the "bone jarring" variety.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 3-9-18 Bears at Crunch

Budaj loses a squeaker in his first conditioning start.

HER-2
SYR-1

Peter Budaj allowed 2 goals on 18 shots for the loss.

First Period
NO SCORING

Second Period
2:51 HER Graovac (12), (Gazley, Simpson)(PP)
7:56 SYR Joseph (11), (Bodie, Dumont)(PP)

Third Period
13:22 HER Ness (4), (Graovac)

Mathieu Joseph was the game's second star.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

Juniors Game Night: 3-9-18

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Sherbrooke Phoenix 3 @ Blainville-Boisbriand Armada 4

C Alex Barre-Boulet, BLB: 0-4-4, E, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, 11/17 FO, *Second Star*
Season Totals: 62 GP, 51-62-113, +27, 65 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 65 GP, 29-52-81, +10, 42 PIM

Barre-Boulet assisted on all four of the Armada’s goals, including two on the power play and all three of linemate Alexandre Alain’s (undrafted) hat trick goals. Alain scored two of his three goals in the 3rd to break open a 2-2 tie.

Ontario Hockey League

Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 4 @ Kitchener Rangers 3

W Boris Katchouk, SSM: 2-0-2, +2, 2 PIM, 8 SOG, *First Star*
Season Totals: 55 GP, 41-40-81, +51, 28 PIM
’16-’17 Season: 66 GP, 35-29-64, +18, 46 PIM

W Taylor Raddysh, SSM: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 5 SOG, 1/5 FO
Season Totals (SSM): 24 GP, 16-18-34, +18, 10 PIM
Season Totals (ER): 30 GP, 15-29-44, +10, 16 PIM
Season Totals: 54 GP, 31-47-78, +28, 26 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals: 58 GP, 42-67-109, +67, 37 PIM

Katchouk (pictured) opened and closed the scoring as the Soo opened up a 3-0 lead on the Rangers in the 1st and then allowed Kitchener to tie the game at 3-3 before Katchouk scored a league-leading 9th game-winner in the 3rd, his 41st of the season, earning First Star honors. In addition to leading the OHL in game-winners, Katchouk is third in the league in goals and second in the league in plus-minus.

North Bay Battalion 4 @ Sudbury Wolves 1

W Alexey Lipanov, SBY: 1-0-1, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG, *Second Star*
Season Totals (SBY): 16 GP, 3-2-5, -12, 8 PIM
Season Totals (BAR): 35 GP, 11-19-30, +9, 10 PIM
Season Totals: 51 GP, 14-21-35, -3, 18 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals (VHL-Russia): 21 GP, 3-5-8, +5, 8 PIM

Lipanov earned hometown Second Star honors, scoring the Wolves’ lone goal on the power play in a 4-1 loss to the Battalion. North Bay got goals from four different skaters.

Western Hockey League

Kelowna Rockets 4 @ Kamploops Blazers 2

D Cal Foote, KEL: 0-1-1, +1, 2 PIM, 4 SOG
Season Totals: 57 GP, 17-48-65, +22, 46 PIM
‘15-‘16 Totals: 71 GP, 6-51-57, +39, 41 PIM

Foote assisted on Dillon Dube’s (CGY, 2016 2nd round pick) game-winning power play goal.

Moose Jaw Warriors 4 @ Prince Albert Raiders 6

D Oleg Sosunov, MJ: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 66 GP, 7-17-24, +39, 58 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (MHL-Russia): 32 GP, 0-0-0, +1, 79 PIM

Kody McDonald (undrafted) scored twice early for the Raiders and the captain Curtis Miske scored twice late as Price Albert beat Moose Jaw at the Art Hauser Centre. Sharks free agent signee Jayden Halbgewachs (undrafted) paced the Warriors with two goals and paces the WHL with 66.

United States Hockey League

** Note: Cole Guttman (Dubuque) was placed on injured reserved on December 22nd following the completion of the World Junior A Challenge tournament.

Chicago Steel 2 @ Omaha Lancers 1

D Nick Perbix , OMA: 1-0-1, -2, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, *Second Star*
Season Totals: 43 GP, 3-18-21, +12, 16 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 10-30-40, 6 PIM
Committed to: St. Cloud State University

Perbix scored the lone goal for the Lancers, a power play marker in the 2nd to knot the game at 1-1, earning Second Star honors. Finnish winger Aaro Vidgren (undrafted) scored both of Chicago’s goals.

Minnesota State High School League

#3 Duluth East Greyhounds 4 @ #2 Edina Hornets 2

F Sammy Walker, EDN: 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM, 6 SOG
Season Totals (HS): 30 GP, 33-41-74, 16 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 22-24-46, 6 PIM
Committed to: University of Minnesota

The Hornets opened the scoring, but the Greyhounds would score the next three, and Edina couldn’t quite come back from the 3-1 deficit. Walker assisted on the 3rd period hope goal to draw within one. Duluth East leading scorer Garret Worth (uncommited) paced the Greyhounds with two goals and an assist, as Duluth East advances to the MN State Class AA championship game against Minnetonka on Saturday night. Edina draws the 3rd place consolation game Saturday afternoon against Centennial High School. Edina defeated the Cougars twice this season by scores of 5-2 and 3-2.

Crunch's Offense Struggles in Loss to Bears


By Jeremy Houghtaling

The Syracuse Crunch had a sizable advantage in shots, but the Hershey Bears were more opportunistic.

The Crunch led 30-18 in shots on goal but the Bears’ Aaron Ness broke the tie with 6:38 remaining, as Syracuse was edged by Hershey, 2-1, at the Onondaga County War Memorial Friday. The loss snaps the Crunch’s seven game point streak.

“It was a tough game to lose tonight,” Syracuse forward Mathieu Joseph said. “We outshot them and had a lot of scoring chances. A couple missed scoring chances on my part and a couple guys on the team. We weren’t opportunistic enough. We’ve got to find a way to win like that. It’s a tough loss.”

NHL Game Night: 3-6-18 Rangers at Ex-Rangers

The Lightning's two periods were two goals better than the Rangers' three periods.

TB-5
NYR-3

Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 3 goals on 27 shots for the win. Vasy increases his league-leading wins total to 40. He should get plenty of rest over the next week as the Lightning only have two games and Domingue may get one. Cooper has to be careful about going into the playoffs with a tired goaltender.

First Period
2:31 TB Paquette (3), (Kunitz, Callahan)
7:50 TB Erne (3), (Cirelli)

Second Period
1:53 TB Cirelli (2), (Sergachev, Killorn)

Juniors Game Night: 3-8-18

Ontario Hockey League

Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 2 @ Windsor Spitfires 3

W Boris Katchouk, SSM: 0-1-1, +1, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals: 54 GP, 39-40-79, +49, 26 PIM
’16-’17 Season: 66 GP, 35-29-64, +18, 46 PIM

W Taylor Raddysh, SSM: 0-1-1, -1, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Season Totals (SSM): 23 GP, 16-18-34, +18, 10 PIM
Season Totals (ER): 30 GP, 15-29-44, +10, 16 PIM
Season Totals: 53 GP, 31-47-78, +28, 26 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals: 58 GP, 42-67-109, +67, 37 PIM

Igor Larionov, son of the former Red Wings star, was first star for Windsor with a goal and an assist as the Spits beat the Soo Thursday, 3-2.

Sudbury Wolves 4 @ North Bay Battalion 2

W Alexey Lipanov, SBY: 0-0-0, E, 2 PIM, 2 SOG, 7/20 FO
Season Totals (SBY): 15 GP, 2-2-4, -12, 8 PIM
Season Totals (BAR): 35 GP, 11-19-30, +9, 10 PIM
Season Totals: 50 GP, 13-21-34, -3, 18 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals (VHL-Russia): 21 GP, 3-5-8, +5, 8 PIM

Lipanov made his return to the Wolves’ lineup last weekend after missing a month. The Lightning 2017 third rounder is not producing much since his trade to Sudbury. He’s already signed by the Lightning and wasn’t drafted out of the OHL, so he could feasibly go pro next season, or he could be reassigned to Sudbury.

Mississauga Steelheads 8 @ Peterborough Petes 7

W/C Christopher Paquette, PBO: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 58 G, 15-13-28, -35, 16 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (NIA/PBO): 66 GP, 19-29-48, +1, 28 PIM

Paquette had goose eggs across the stat line Thursday as the Petes fell under a Mississauga scoreboard snowman. Paquette was drafted as a sleeper and was starting to show promise this year, but hasn’t been able to take his game to a level (so far) where he’d be a lock for an NHL contract at season’s end. He goes back into the draft if not signed.

Minnesota State High School Quarterfinals

Edina Hornets 7 vs Lakeville North Panthers 1

F Sammy Walker, EHS: 1-4-5, +4, 0 PIM, 5 SOG
Season Totals: 25 GP, 28-30-58, 12 PIM
Section Playoffs: 3 GP, 4-6-10, 4 PIM
State Tournament: 1 GP, 1-4-5, +4, 0 PIM
College Commitment: University of Minnesota

Walker (pictured) and the No. 2 Edina High Hornets blew out 7th-ranked Lakeville North High, 7-1, in the quarterfinals of the Minnesota Class AA State Championship Tournament at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. Walker had a shorthanded goal and four assists and from all reports was on another level than everyone else. Three of his assists were primary. Edina plays No. 3 Duluth East in the semifinals Friday. The Hounds shut out St. Michael-Albertville, 5-0.

Juniors Game Night: 3-7-18

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Drummondville Voltigeurs 3 @ Blainville-Boisbriand Armada 4 (OT)

C Alex Barre-Boulet, BLB: 0-0-0, -2, 0 PIM, 3 SOG, 6/14 FO
Season Totals: 61 GP, 51-58-109, +27, 65 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 65 GP, 29-52-81, +10, 42 PIM

Barre-Boulet has gone scoreless in two straight games for the second time this year and first since September’s opening week. He was traded from the Volts to the Armada midway through last season, so perhaps he was taking it easy on his former ‘mates.

Western Hockey League

Vancouver Giants 4 @ Kelowna Rockets 3 (OT)

D Cal Foote, KEL: 0-1-1, -1, 0 PIM, 4 SOG
Season Totals: 56 GP, 17-47-64, +21, 44 PIM
‘15-‘16 Totals: 71 GP, 6-51-57, +39, 41 PIM

Foote continues to separate his point total from his previous career-best. He’s up to 64 points in 56 games this year vs 57 in 71 last year.

Lethbridge Hurricanes 2 @ Moose Jaw Warriors 6

D Oleg Sosunov, MJ: 0-0-0, +1, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Season Totals: 65 GP, 7-17-24, +39, 58 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (MHL-Russia): 32 GP, 0-0-0, +1, 79 PIM

Sosunov was scoreless as the Warriors topped the Hurricanes Wednesday, 6-2. Jayden Halbgewachs had a hat trick and five points for Brayden Point’s former team. Former Bolt prospect Brett Howden was 1+1. As for Sosunov, after starting the year at an unexpected, yet pretty good offensive clip, he has just seven assists in 27 games since the calendar flipped to January. He’s plus-10 in that same time period.

United States Hockey League

** Note: Cole Guttman (Dubuque) was placed on injured reserve on December 22nd following the completion of the World Junior A Challenge tournament. He is out for the season after undergoing hip surgery. He's committed to Denver University.

Crunch's Yan Focuses on Consistency in Rookie Season


By Jeremy Houghtaling

Consistency is a key for Dennis Yan’s development.

The Syracuse Crunch winger has four multi-point games during his rookie season, including a goal and an assist against Laval Saturday. Of his 20 points in 40 games this season, nine have come during a multi-point performance.

Crunch head coach Benoit Groulx believes Yan has the tools, but needs to use them each and every game.

“I like the skills. I like the size. He’s got to bring it together every day,” Groulx said. “He’s not consistent at doing that. When he does that, he’s a very good player. When he does not, he’s a different player.”

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