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CHL Playoffs Game Night: 3-27-17

Ontario Hockey League

Erie Otters 5 @ Sarnia Sting 3
Western Conference Quarterfinals
Erie leads best-of-7 series, 3-0

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

C Anthony Cirelli, Erie: 0-0-0, +1, 0 PIM, 1 SOG, 16/26 FO
Playoff Totals: 3 GP, 3-2-5, +3, 2 PIM
Season Totals: 51 GP, 25-39-64, +36, 12 PIM

W Taylor Raddysh, Erie: 0-1-1, +1, 0 PIM, 9 SOG
Playoff Totals: 3 GP, 2-4-6, +7, 2 PIM
Season Totals: 58 GP, 42-66-108, +67, 37 PIM

Erie pushed the Sting to the brink of elimination with a 5-3 road win Monday. Darren Raddysh, free agent right-handed defenseman and brother of Taylor, was named first star with two goals. The series shifts back to Pennsylvania for two games as a part of a 1-2-2-1-1 format.

Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 3 @ Flint Firebirds 1
Western Conference Quarterfinals
Sault Ste. Marie leads best-of-7 series, 2-1

W Boris Katchouk, SSM: 1-0-1, E, 0 PIM, 4 SOG
Playoff Totals: 3 GP, 3-2-5, +1, 2 PIM
Season: 66 GP, 35-29-64, +18, 46 PIM

Bruins pick Zach Senyshyn scored a tie-breaking goal at 13:37 of the third period and Katchouk added an empty-netter as the Soo took back home ice advantage in their series with Flint by beating the Firebirds 3-1 Monday.

NHL Game Night: 3-27-17 Blackhawks at Lightning

Vampire Lightning again rise from the dead to keep their season alive.

CHI-4
TB-5 (OT)

Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 4 goals on 29 goals for the win. He was actually pulled toward the end of the opening frame for Petr Budaj, who stopped the 3 shots he faced, but Cooper re-inserted Vasilevskiy and eventually got the payoff in the form of two key breakaway saves including the save of the game denying Kane on a breakaway move that he scores on 99 out of 100 goaltenders on the planet. Not Vasilarceniy tonight, however.

First Period
1:23 CHI Panarin (25), (Kero)
9:29 TB Palat (16), (Hedman, Kucherov)(PP)
10:17 CHI Kane (34), (Hjalmarsson, Keith)
13:41 CHI Jurco (1), (Schmaltz)

Second Period
8:47 CHI Panik (21), (VanRiemsdyk, Schmaltz)
11:45 TB Drouin (19), (Killorn, Stralman)
12:47 TB Stralman (4), (McKegg, Palat)
16:24 TB Drouin (20), (Hedman, Kucherov)(PP)

Third Period
NO SCORING

Overtime
4:25 TB Gourde (2), (Hedman)

Yanni Gourde, Jonathan Drouin, and Ondrej Palat were the game's three stars.

My God. What did we just witness? Every once in a while something happens in sports that you think can't happen, but by shear force of will a player or a team makes it happen. When Richard Panik put the Lightning down 4-1 around the middle of the Second Period of this game, the Lightning season looked completely dead and over. It's not just that the Lightning had fallen behind an opponent by three goals with about half the game to make up the deficit, but it was against the Chicago Blackhawks. It was against a defensive corps we all watched strangle this Lightning team to death in the Stanley Cup Final just a couple of years ago. There should have been no way they would surrender a 3 goal lead, and especially so to a Tampa Bay club that looked sloppy and disorganized for most of the first 30 minutes and couldn't get out of its own way.

I give a lot of credit to Jon Cooper and, more importantly, to the character of this team. They could've flat given up right there and I might not have blamed them. Instead, the team resolved to turn the remaining ~35 minutes of hockey in this game into a breathtaking demonstration of the brand of Lightning hockey we've rarely seen this season but know these players are capable. Speed? Yes. Skill? Yes. But, more importantly, a suffocating dedication to puck pursuit and denying the opposition time, space, and passing lanes. The Lightning started to crawl all over the Blackhawks like a troop of extremely pissed off fire ants in all three zones and eventually made the breaks they needed to get 2 points that looked impossible just an hour and a half or so ago. That forecheck tonight, in particular... my goodness. When they forecheck like that there's not a team on earth that can stand up to the pressure.

The Lightning move to just 1 point behind Boston for the final Wild Card spot, and they've got another game against Jack Edwards and The Spoked Satan left on the schedule. The dream of a Lightning playoff berth refuses to die.

Luke Witkowski had 4 penalty minutes, 4 hits, and 1 blocked shot in 11:56. He had a hit on Hossa tonight that you rarely see do that much damage against a guy as sturdy on his skates as Hossa is.

Gregg McKegg had a helper and was +1 with 1 shot and 2 hits in 10:20. A comeback like this rarely comes without some secondary scoring help from the lower lines, and McKegg supplied the key play around the net that led to Stralman's goal.

Jake Dotchin was -1 with 5 shots and 3 hits in 20:40.

Gabriel Dumont was +1 with 1 shot, 3 hits, and 1 blocked shot in 11:41.

Gourde, the man of the hour, had the OT GWG shooting forehand on a breakaway. He also had 1 shot in his 16:30 of ice time and was 27% on 15 draws.

Adam Erne was -1 with 2 shots, 1 hit, and 1 blocked shot in 11:19.

Joel Vermin was -1 with 2 hits in 11:15. Even without gaudy stat lines, I can't underscore enough how important the minutes and work Dumont, Erne, and Vermin put in tonight. They were active, tenacious, and they didn't let up on Chicago as the Lightning comeback continued to sweep over Chicago. You would think a team like Chicago's depth would be able to take advantage of some of these Lightning callups, and it was the other way around tonight. Guys like Erne were looking to take their lunch money.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

KHL Playoff Game Day: 3-27-17

KHL Western Conference Finals
(4) Yaroslavl 1 vs. (2)St. Petersburg 2 (OT)
St. Petersburg Leads the Series 3-0
Nikita Gusev, St. Petersburg, 1-0-1, -1, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Playoff totals: 12 GP, 6-8-14, +3, 2 PIM
Regular season: 57 GP, 24-47-71, +33, 8 PIM

Nikita Gusev had an early Third Period power play marker to force OT as SKA came from behind to defeat Yaroslavl 2-1 in OT. Gusev played 18:08 in the match. Undrafted 22 year old forward Alexander Barabanov scored the OT winner for SKA that has now put them one win shy of the KHL Gagarin Cup Final. In the East, top seeded Magnitogorsk holds a 2-0 series lead on Ak Bars Kazan.

AHL Game Night: 3-27-17 Crunch at Marlies

Roller coaster goes down.

SYR-0
TOR- 4

Mike McKenna allowed 3 goals on 27 shots for the loss.

First Period
1:13 TOR Greening (10), (Kapanen, Valiev)

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
6:22 TOR Oleksy (3), (Greening, Sislo)
8:53 TOR Kalinin (1), (Johnsson, Oleksy)
17:39 TOR Leipsic (13), (Greening)(EN)

Syracuse slipped 2 points behind Toronto for the top spot in the North Division with the loss, although they still hold a game in hand on the Marlies.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

CHL Playoffs Game Night: 3-26-17

Ontario Hockey League

Windsor Spitfires 2 @ London Knights 5
Western Conference Quarterfinals
Best-of-7 series tied, 1-1

W/C Mitchell Stephens, LDN: 1-0-1, E, 0 PIM, 8 SOG, *First Star*
Playoff Totals: 2-0-2, E, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 51 GP, 22-32-54, +19, 26 PIM

NCAA Game Night: 3-26-17

No. 12 Notre Dame Fighting Irish 3 vs No. 4 UMass-Lowell River Hawks 2 (OT)
NCAA Northeast Regional Final (Manchester, NH)

C Ryan Lohin, UML: 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals: 41 GP, 12-17-29, +10, 14 PIM

Notre Dame got a goal from Andrew Oglevie (undrafted), his 21st of the season, to propel the Irish to the Frozen Four. UML had a 2-1 earlier in the game. The season is over for Ryan Lohin, who surged late in the season production-wise. He should carry that over into his sophomore season next year and be among team leaders on the stat sheet.

AHL Game Night: 3-25-17 Comets at Crunch

Crunch make good on the previous night's defeat.

UTI-1
SYR-5

Mike McKenna allowed 1 goal on 21 shots for the victory. I think that might be his first quality start in a Crunch uniform.

First Period
10:27 UTI Zalewski (5), (Billins, Pelletier)
11:56 SYR Conacher (15), (Bournival, Peca)

Second Period
12:30 SYR Ikonen (4), (Comrie, Thomas)(PP)

Third Period
4:57 SYR Kurtz (3), (Peca, Condra)
8:44 SYR Froese (27), (Taormina, Conacher)(PP)
13:26 SYR Conacher (16), (McGinn)

Cory Conacher, Matthew Peca, and Henri Ikonen were the game's three stars. A rare Henri Ikonen sighting.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

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

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