Talk Lightning Hockey with fans and staff at the BP Message Boards and follow us on Twitter and Facebook

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 3-25-17

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Rimouski Oceanic 1 @ Saint John Sea Dogs 4
QMJHL Playoffs, Round 1
Saint John leads best-of-7 series, 2-0

W Bokondji Imama, SJ: 1-1-2, +1, 0 PIM, 3 SOG, 1 Hit
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 1-1-2, +2, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 65 GP, 40-14-54, +10, 103 PIM

W Mathieu Joseph, SJ: 1-0-1, +1, 0 PIM, 3 SOG, 0 Hits, *Third Star*
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 3-0-3, +3, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 54 GP, 36-44-80, +37, 57 PIM

Imama scored his first of the playoffs and Joseph was third star as Saint John went up 2-0 on Rimouski with a 4-1 win Saturday. They won 9-2 in Game 1.

Halifax Mooseheads 2 @ Rouyn-Noranda Huskies 3 (OT)
QMJHL Playoffs, Round 1
Best-of-7 series tied, 1-1

C/W Otto Somppi, HAL: Did not play (shoulder injury)
Season Totals: 60 GP, 17-24-41, -7, 28 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 59 GP, 13-33-46, -15, 25 PIM

Somppi is considered week-to-week with a shoulder injury.

Val-d’Or Foreurs 0 @ Shawinigan Cataractes 3
QMJHL Playoffs, Round 1
Best-of-7 series tied, 1-1

W Dennis Yan, SHAW: 0-0-0, E, 2 PIM, 3 SOG, 2 Hits
Playoff Totals: 2 GP: 0-1-1, -2, 2 PIM
Season Totals: 64 GP, 46-29-75, +23, 52 PIM

Shawinigan avoided a possible disastrous circumstance by taking Game 2 against the Foreurs. Yan was scoreless.

Ontario Hockey League

Erie Otters 9 @ Sarnia Sting 3
Western Conference Quarterfinals
Erie leads best-of-7 series, 2-0

D Erik Cernak, Erie: 1-0-1, +3, 0 PIM, 4 SOG
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 1-1-2, +6, 0 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 41 GP, 4-11-15, +7, 35 PIM

C Anthony Cirelli, Erie: 2-1-3, +1, 2 PIM, 8 SOG, 7/17 FO, *Second Star*
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 3-2-5, +2, 2 PIM
Season Totals: 51 GP, 25-39-64, +36, 12 PIM

W Taylor Raddysh, Erie: 1-2-3, +3, 0 PIM, 4 SOG
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 2-3-5, +6, 2 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 42-66-108, +67, 37 PIM

Raddysh, Cernak, and Cirelli scored in succession in the second half of the first period as the Otters pounded the Sting, 9-3.

Flint Firebirds 6 @ Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 3
Western Conference Quarterfinals
Best-of-7 series tied, 1-1

W Boris Katchouk, SSM: 1-1-2, -1, 0 PIM, 3 SOG, *Third Star*
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 2-2-4, +1, 2 PIM
Season: 66 GP, 35-29-64, +18, 46 PIM

Katchouk scored again in Game 2, but the Soo fell to Flint, 6-3. The series now shifts to Michigan.

Niagara IceDogs 3 @ Peterborough Petes 6
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals
Peterborough leads best-of-7 series, 2-0

W/C Christopher Paquette, PBO: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG, 12/17 FO
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 0-1-1, +2, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 66 GP, 19-29-48, +1, 28 PIM

D Matt Spencer, PBO: 1-0-1, +2, 0 PIM, 4 SOG
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 1-1-2, +5, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 60 GP, 7-22-29, +9, 58 PIM

W Jonne Tammela, PBO: Did not play
Season Totals: 2 GP, 1-0-1, +1, 2 PIM
2015-2016 (Finland): 37 GP, 5-8-13, +10, 16 PIM

Matt Spencer scored into an empty net with five seconds remaining for his first goal of the playoffs and the Petes doubled up the IceDogs, 6-3.

Western Hockey League

Swift Current Broncos 2 @ Moose Jaw Warriors 3
Eastern Conference First Round
Best-of-7 series tied, 1-1

C Brett Howden, MJ: 0-0-0, E, 4 PIM
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 0-0-0, -2, 4 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 38-43-81, +14, 73 PIM

Moose Jaw scored twice in the third period to flip a 2-1 deficit into a Game 2 win. The series now goes to Swift Current for two games.

Kamloops Blazers 2 @ Kelowna Rockets 3
Western Conference First Round
Kelowna leads best-of-7 series, 2-0

G Connor Ingram, KAM: Loss, 34 saves on 37 shots, *Third Star*
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 0-2-0-0, 3.53 GAA, .918 sv %, 0 SO
Season Totals: 45 GP, 26-14-2-2, 2.44 GAA, .927 sv%, 5 SO

Ingram earned a game star on the road, but Kamloops now find themselves in an 0-2 hole coming home.

ECHL Game Night: 3-25-17

Norfolk Admirals 3 at Kalamazoo Wings 5

F Brian Hart, KAL, 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIMS, 3 SOG
Season Totals (ECHL): 28 GP, 3-4-7, -2, 4 PIMs, 51 SOG
Season Totals (AHL): 33 GP, 3-4-7, E, 26 PIMs, 50 SOG

F Cameron Darcy, KAL, 0-1-1, -1, 0 PIMS, 1 SOG
Season Totals (ECHL): 15 GP, 5-14-19, +11, 6 PIMs, 42 SOG
Season Totals (AHL): 34 GP, 3-4-7, -3, 14 PIMs, 40 SOG

Other Notables
G Nic Riopel, KAL, did not play
Season Totals: 29 GP, 17-10-0-1, 2.89 GAA, 0.904 SV%, 1 SO

The K-Wings rolled out a repeat performance Saturday night of Friday night's 5-3 victory over the Norfolk Admirals. Joel Martin was in goal for this contest, stopping 26 shots while Lightning prospect Cam Darcy set up a first period power play marker by Peter Schneider. Kalamazoo now sits just 2 points back of Quad Cities for third in the Central Division. The K-Wings hit the road for three games in Estero, FL next week, playing the Florida Everblades Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday nights.

NCAA Game Night: 3-25-17

No. 9 Cornell Big Red 0 vs No. 4 UMass-Lowell River Hawks 5
NCAA Northeast Regional Semifinal (Manchester, NH)

C Ryan Lohin, UML: 2-0-2, +1, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Season Totals: 40 GP, 12-16-28, +10, 14 PIM

Lohin scored twice and Tyler Wall (Rangers) stopped all 19 shots he faced to lead UML to within one win of the Frozen Four. The River Hawks will play Notre Dame Sunday for the right to advance.

No. 6 Boston University Terriers 2 vs No. 3 Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs 3 (OT)
NCAA West Regional Final (Fargo, ND)

D John MacLeod, BU: 0-0-0, E, 2 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 36 GP, 2-5-7, +8, 30 PIM
2015-2016 Totals: 26 GP, 1-1-2, -4, 26 PIM

The Bulldogs punched their ticket to the Frozen Four when Adam Johnson scored at 1:57 of overtime. Lightning camper Alex Iafallo had a goal and an assist for UMD in the game. As for Johnny MacLeod, his junior season ends with two goals and seven points. The righty stay-at-home defenseman could turn pro, but with nine potential additions coming in from juniors there may not be room. Unlike junior players, MacLeod can’t join Syracuse in any kind of tryout capacity as it would burn his eligibility for next year. It is possible the Lightning pass on the former second rounder as well. Time will tell.

No. 12 Notre Dame Fighting Irish 3 vs No. 5 Minnesota Golden Gophers 2
NCAA Northeast Regional Semifinal (Manchester, NH)

D Ryan Zuhlsdorf, UMN: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 37 GP, 2-3-5, +11, 35 PIM

The Gophers were knocked out of the tournament by the Irish, who squeaked by Minnesota, 3-2, Saturday after falling behind 2-0 early. Zuhlsdorf’s freshman season ends in New Hampshire. He came on throughout the year and could see his role expand significantly in the next two years with Minnesota.

*USCHO poll used for rankings

Crunch Score Five Unanswered Goals in Win Over Utica


By Jeremy Houghtaling

The Syracuse Crunch answered quickly and kept plugging away.

The Crunch netted the equalizer 89 seconds after the Comets opened the scoring and went on to score five unanswered goals, as Syracuse routed rival Utica, 5-1, at the Onondaga County War Memorial Saturday.

“We thought we had a solid effort from the first to last minute,” Crunch head coach Benoit Groulx said. “It was unfortunate that they took the lead, but we were able to answer back quickly. That gave us confidence for the rest of the game.”

KHL Playoff Game Day: 3-25-17

KHL Western Conference Finals
(2)St. Petersburg 4 vs. (4)Yaroslavl 1
St. Petersburg Leads the Series 2-0
Nikita Gusev, St. Petersburg, 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Playoff totals: 10 GP, 5-7-12, +4, 2 PIM
Regular season totals: 57 GP, 24-47-71, +33, 8 PIM

Nikita Gusev had a power play assist on an Ilya Kovalchuk goal in SKA's 4-1 Game Two win over Yaroslavl. He played 16:41 in the match. Ex-Penguins and Coyotes forward Sergei Plotnikov led the way for SKA with 2 goals and 3 points in the victory. Meanwhile, in the East, top seed Magnitogorsk has a 1-0 series lead on third seeded Ak Bars Kazan.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 3-24-17

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Rimouski Oceanic 2 @ Saint John Sea Dogs 9
QMJHL Playoffs, Round 1
Saint John leads best-of-7 series, 1-0

W Bokondji Imama, SJ: 0-0-0, +1, 0 PIM, 5 SOG, 2 Hits
Season Totals: 65 GP, 40-14-54, +10, 103 PIM

W Mathieu Joseph, SJ: 2-0-2, +3, 0 PIM, 4 SOG, 1 Hit
Season Totals: 54 GP, 36-44-80, +37, 57 PIM

The Dogs scored four times in the first period and cruised to a 9-2 shellacking of Rimouski. Joseph opened the scoring, then scored later while shorthanded.

Halifax Mooseheads 5 @ Rouyn-Noranda Huskies 4
QMJHL Playoffs, Round 1
Halifax leads best-of-7 series, 1-0

C/W Otto Somppi, HAL: Did not play (shoulder injury)
Season Totals: 60 GP, 17-24-41, -7, 28 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 59 GP, 13-33-46, -15, 25 PIM

Somppi is considered week-to-week with a shoulder injury – the same shoulder and the same injury that caused him to miss a significant amount of time last season. He’s considering surgery. His teammates upset second-seeded Rouyn-Noranda 5-4 Friday.

Val-d’Or Foreurs 5 @ Shawinigan Cataractes 2
QMJHL Playoffs, Round 1
Val-d’Or leads best-of-7 series, 1-0

W Dennis Yan, SHAW: 0-1-1, -2, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, 1 Hit
Season Totals: 64 GP, 46-29-75, +23, 52 PIM

The Foreurs drew first blood in their opening round series against third-seeded Shawinigan, winning 5-2 Friday.

Ontario Hockey League

Windsor Spitfires 4 @ London Knights 3 (OT)
Western Conference Quarterfinals
Windsor leads best-of-7 series, 1-0

W/C Mitchell Stephens, LDN: 1-0-1, E, 0 PIM, 5 SOG, *Third Star*
Season Totals: 51 GP, 22-32-54, +19, 26 PIM

The Spits stole home ice advantage away from London, winning in the Knights’ barn, 4-3, Friday. Stephens scored late in the third period to force overtime after the Knights lost leads of 1-0 and 2-1 earlier.

Western Hockey League

Swift Current Broncos 2 @ Moose Jaw Warriors 0
Eastern Conference First Round
Swift Current leads best-of-7 series, 1-0

C Brett Howden, MJ: 0-0-0, -2, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 38-43-81, +14, 73 PIM

One game after putting 10 on the scoreboard against Swift Current, Moose Jaw was shut out at home by the Broncos, 2-0. Jordan Papirny (undrafted) stopped 40 shots in the win. It was his first shutout this season.

Kamloops Blazers 0 @ Kelowna Rockets 4
Western Conference First Round
Kelowna leads best-of-7 series, 1-0

G Connor Ingram, KAM: Loss, 44 saves on 48 shots
Season Totals: 45 GP, 26-14-2-2, 2.44 GAA, .927 sv%, 5 SO

Ingram stopped 44 shots, but Kamloops could only manage 15 on Kelowna goalie Michael Herringer. Not going to win many that way. The Rockets took Game 1.

ECHL Game Night: 3-24-17

Norfolk Admirals 3 at Kalamazoo Wings 5

F Brian Hart, KAL, 0-0-0, +1, 0 PIMS, 2 SOG
Season Totals (ECHL): 27 GP, 3-4-7, -1, 4 PIMs, 48 SOG
Season Totals (AHL): 33 GP, 3-4-7, E, 26 PIMs, 50 SOG

F Cameron Darcy, KAL, 1-0-1, +2, 0 PIMS, 4 SOG, *Second Star*
Season Totals (ECHL): 14 GP, 5-13-18, +12, 6 PIMs, 41 SOG
Season Totals (AHL): 34 GP, 3-4-7, -3, 14 PIMs, 40 SOG

Other Notables
G Nic Riopel, KAL, W, 60:00 MIN, 36/39
Season Totals: 29 GP, 17-10-0-1, 2.89 GAA, 0.904 SV%, 1 SO

The K-Wings secured their place in the 2017 Kelly Cup Playoffs Friday night in front of 2,154 fans at the Wings Event Center, besting the Norfolk Admirals 5-3. Nic Riopel returned to the net and turned away 36 shots. Lightning prospect Cam Darcy scored the eventual game-winner on an unassisted marker early in the 3rd period with a one-on-one glove-side move against the Norfolk netminder, earning 2nd Star Honors. Kalamazoo and Quad Cities are battling to see who draws Toledo or Fort Wayne in the playoffs, with the Mallards up by 4 points over the K-Wings with a game-in-hand. Kalamazoo finishes up the three-game home stand Saturday night with a rematch against Norfolk.

NCAA Game Night: 3-24-17

No. 10 North Dakota Fighting Hawks 3 vs No. 6 Boston University Terriers 4 (2 OT)
NCAA West Regional Semifinal (Fargo, ND)

D John MacLeod, BU: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals: 35 GP, 2-5-7, +8, 28 PIM
2015-2016 Totals: 26 GP, 1-1-2, -4, 26 PIM

Bruins pick Charlie McAvoy took a cross-ice pass from Coyotes prospect Clayton Keller and ended a double-overtime thriller in Fargo, 4-3. BU had taken a 3-1 lead early in the third period only to have North Dakota fight back to tie it with 4:26 left in the final frame. Terriers goalie Jake Oettinger (2017) had 56 saves for BU, who advances to play the winner of Ohio State and Minnesota-Duluth, who was headed to overtime tied 2-2.

Hajek Makes Pro Debut in Crunch's Loss to Penguins


By Jeremy Houghtaling

Libor Hajek hopped over the boards for the first shift roughly 1:20 into the game.

The 19-year-old defenseman described the feeling simply. “Just nervous. That’s it.”

The Tampa Bay Lightning’s 2016 second round draft pick made his pro debut with the Crunch, but Syracuse was outmatched by the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, 5-1, at the Onondaga County War Memorial Friday.

“Libor was good. I like the way he skated,” Crunch head coach Benoit Groulx said. “Tough night for him. It’s tough to start your career in a game like this. Overall, I thought he did some good things.”

AHL Game Night: 3-24-17 Penguins at Crunch

Crunch crushed by class of the conference.

WBS-5
SYR-1

Kristers Gudlevskis surrendered 3 goals on 7 shots for the loss before being pulled for Mike McKenna who allowed 2 on 25 shots the rest of the way.

First Period
5:22 WBS Di Pauli (2), (Dea, Pouliot)
10:54 WBS Porter (11), (Aston-Reese, Goers)
14:16 WBS Aston-Reese (2), (Porter)
15:19 SYR Bournival (6), (Conacher)(SH)

Second Period
1:09 WBS Goers (4), (unassisted)

Third Period
1:34 WBS Simon (13), (Haggerty, Prow)

Michael Bournival was the game's third star.

Tonight showed just how far Syracuse is from being a serious contender in the Eastern Conference with a slim number of regular season games to get well. Getting some players back from Tampa Bay would be helpful, but there's still way too much inconsistency from the players who stay behind in Syracuse.

Syracuse is tied atop the North Division at 75 points with Toronto and hold a game in hand on the Marlies. Nobody seems to really want to win this division. The Crunch keep teetering at the top of the table playing around .500 hockey recently, but nobody seems to want to seize the opportunity to overtake them.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

Syndicate content