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Crunch Allow Four Unanswered Goals in Loss to Comets

By Jeremy Houghtaling

The Syracuse Crunch's effort early was erased by the Utica Comets’ four unanswered goals.

The Crunch allowed two goals in a 16 second span late in the second period to tie the score and the Comets scored the eventual game-winner on the power play in the third, as Syracuse fell to Utica, 4-2, at the Onondaga County War Memorial Saturday.

“I think we’ve got to be pleased with the way we played for 29 minutes,” Crunch head coach Benoit Groulx said. “Then they had that bad goal late in the … second and then they made a good play and scored the second goal. The game changed and then we had some chances. I thought (Comets goalie Richard) Bachman was the best player for them tonight. He made some great stops and then they were very opportunistic scoring on that power play.

“They’re a good team. We were a good team tonight. We’ve got to be pleased with what we accomplished tonight, but obviously it wasn’t enough.”

NCAA Game Night: 2-2-18

No. 8 Providence Friars 2 @ Vermont Catamounts 2

C Ross Colton, UVM: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 26 GP, 14-4-18, -11, 26 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals: 33 GP, 12-15-27, E, 22 PIM

After two first star games in a row, Colton was held off the scoresheet in a tie against the Friars. Goaltender Stefanos Lekkas (undrafted) made 42 saves for the Catamounts.

Boston University Terriers 3 @ UMass Minutemen 2

D John MacLeod, BU: 0-0-0, E, 2 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 15 GP, 0-3-3, +3, 12 PIM
’17-’18 Totals: 36 GP, 2-5-7, +8, 30 PIM

BU went up 3-1 and held on for a Friday night win.

No. 13 Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks 3 @ No. 6 St. Cloud State Huskies 5

D Kristian Oldham, UNO: Did not play
Season Totals: 6 GP, 1-2-1, 4.12 GAA, .867 sv%, 0 SO
’16-‘17 Totals: 10 GP, 5-3-1, 3.38 GAA, .895 sv%, 0 SO

David Pope (Red Wings) had a hat trick for UNO.

*USCHO poll used for rankings

AHL Game Night: 2-2-18 Crunch at Comets

Et tu, Blujus?


Connor Ingram allowed 2 goals on 36 shots for the hard luck loss.

First Period

Second Period
1:54 UTI D'Aoust (8), (Brisebois, Sifers)
6:17 UTI Goldobin (8), (Boucher, Holm)(PP)
19:13 SYR Yan (8), (Stephens)

Third Period
19:24 UTI Blujus (3), (Archibald)(PP)(EN)

Ingram was the game's third star in defeat.

Syracuse's recent offensive struggles may be painting us all a picture of just how important Peca and Bournival were to the lineup.

Box score from

NHL Game Night: 2-1-18 Lightning at Flames

Lightning bury Flames beneath an avalanche of soft goals.


Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 4 goals on 46 shots for the victory. He wasn't his sharpest through 40 minutes, although I can't call any of the goals he allowed overly soft. He did seem to get the rust off in the Third Period.

First Period
7:16 CGY Ferland (20), (Backlund, Hamilton)(PP)
13:34 TB Coburn (1), (Sustr, Peca)

Second Period
2:04 TB Killorn (6), (Gourde, Point)(PP)
3:38 CGY Backlund (10), (Tkachuk, Brodie)
5:25 CGY Monahan (23), (Gaudreau, Hamilton)
14:27 CGY Stajan (2), (Hathaway, Brodie)
14:49 TB Peca (2), (Killorn, Stralman)

Third Period
0:12 TB Killorn (7), (Gourde)
5:16 TB Conacher (4), (Peca, Killorn)
6:22 TB Stamkos (19), (Kunitz)
8:26 TB Conacher (5), (Callahan)

Alex Killorn, Matthew Peca, and Cory Conacher were the game's three stars.

I'm going to venture a guess that Jon Cooper will be happy with the result, but he won't like how wide open and wild this game ultimately was. In the end, the Lightning's victory was built on a soft goal surrendered off the rush to Peca at the end of the Second Period that gave them much better position for the comeback going into the final frame and then two absolutely putrid softies from horrible angles to Cory Conacher that ended up being the game winning goal and the last bit of dirt on the Flames' collective graves in this contest. Two summers ago the Flames weren't willing to pay the price Steve Yzerman was commanding for Ben Bishop. Not sure that decision aged well tonight.

Slater Koekkoek was +1 with 2 shots, 2 hits, and 1 blocked shot in 15:03.

Jake Dotchin was +1 with 5 penalty minutes, 2 hits, and 1 blocked shot in 15:47.

Matthew Peca had 1 goal, 2 assists and was a gaudy +4 with 4 shots and 1 blocked shot in 17:29. He was also 43% on 23 draws.

Box score and extended statistics from

Bolts Acquire Depth Goaltender Edward Pasquale

TAMPA BAY – The Tampa Bay Lightning have acquired goaltender Edward Pasquale from the Edmonton Oilers in exchange for future considerations, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced today.

Pasquale, 27, has appeared in 16 games with the Bakersfield Condors of the American Hockey League this season, compiling a record of 6-5-4 to go along with a 2.60 goals-against average and .910 save percentage. He leads the Condors for goals-against average and save percentage.

The 6-foot-2, 215-pound goaltender has played in 211 career AHL games over seven seasons with the Condors, Grand Rapids Griffins, St. John’s IceCaps and Chicago Wolves, posting a record of 100-83-10 to go along with a 2.60 goals-against average, a .913 save percentage and 15 shutouts. Pasquale set a career high for wins with 23 while with the IceCaps during the 2011-12 season.

Pasquale was originally drafted by the Atlanta Thrashers in the fourth round, 117th overall, at the 2009 NHL Draft.

Additionally, the Bakersville Condors have acquired forward Ty Loney and goaltender Nic Riopel from the Syracuse Crunch for future considerations.

NHL Game Night: 1-30-18 Lightning at Jets

Lightning look weary in first game out of the All Star break.


Louis Domingue allowed 3 goals on 37 shots for the loss. He did his job tonight and gave his team a chance. The Lightning have to score more than one goal in support of their backup. Just have to.

First Period
19:31 TB Peca (1), (Point, Dotchin)

Second Period
3:30 WPG Laine (23), (Wheeler, Byfuglien)(PP)
8:35 WPG Connor (16), (Wheeler, Myers)

Third Period
14:35 WPG Little (11), (Perreault, Ehlers)

Matthew Peca was the game's third star.

Pretty evenly played First Period with the Lightning maybe getting a shade better scoring chances and getting the late 1-0 lead. However, a 5-on-3 goal for Winnipeg seemed to completely chance the complexion of the game. Winnipeg controlled the balance of the remainder of the game and never really looked back, eventually outshooting Tampa Bay 37-24 in total. Fatigue may have been a component of this, coming off the break and having to fly all the way to Winnipeg, so I'm not ready to sound any alarm bells over this outcome.

The biggest silver lining was, of course, the early return of Victor Hedman to the lineup in 25:00 of action. Knees must be made of rubber bands.

Tampa Bay finishes their first unsuccessful 10-game segment of the year with just 10 points over those 10 games. They subtract 2 from their cache of insurance points and now have 11 insurance points going into the final three segments of the campaign.

Jake Dotchin had a helper, 2 shots, and 1 blocked shot in 18:04.

Peca had a ruthless finish in tight for his goal and was +1 with 4 shots and 1 blocked shot in 13:10. He was also 67% on 12 draws against a very good Jets team in the faceoff circles and got some PK time at a key juncture in the Third Period.

Box score and extended statistics from

NCAA Game Night: 1-27-18

Vermont Catamounts 2 @ Merrimack Warriors 1 (OT)

C Ross Colton, UVM: 1-1-2, +2, 2 PIM, 4 SOG, *First Star*
Season Totals: 25 GP, 14-4-18, -11, 26 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals: 33 GP, 12-15-27, E, 22 PIM

Colton had virtually the same stat line Saturday as he did Friday when he had a goal and an assist and scored the game-winning goal late in the third period. He got his goal in overtime Saturday, earning another first star.

UMass-Lowell River Hawks 2 @ No. 16 Boston College Eagles 5

C Ryan Lohin, UML: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals: 27 GP, 8-14-22, E, 22 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals: 41 GP, 12-17-29, +10, 14 PIM

BC got some revenge on the River Hawks, who beat the Eagles in Lowell on Friday.

Boston University Terriers 4 @ Arizona State Sun Devils 3

D John MacLeod, BU: 0-0-0, -1, 2 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 14 GP, 0-3-3, +3, 10 PIM
’17-’18 Totals: 36 GP, 2-5-7, +8, 30 PIM

ASU showed some improvement from their 8-0 loss Friday, only losing 4-3 Saturday.

No. 12 Western Michigan Broncos 3 @ No. 19 Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks 7

D Kristian Oldham, UNO: Did not play
Season Totals: 6 GP, 1-2-1, 4.12 GAA, .867 sv%, 0 SO
’16-‘17 Totals: 10 GP, 5-3-1, 3.38 GAA, .895 sv%, 0 SO

UNO swept its weekend series with No. 12 WMU, winning big both games.

No. 1 Notre Dame Fighting Irish 4 @ No. 13 Minnesota Golden Gophers 1

D Ryan Zuhlsdorf, UMN: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 30 GP, 0-9-9, -1, 32 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals: 37 GP, 2-3-5, +11, 35 PIM

Defenseman Jordan Gross (undrafted) scored once and Dylan Malmquist (undrafted) add two to lead top-ranked Notre Dame to a win in Minnesota. The Gophers had a 1-0 overtime win the night before.

*USCHO poll used for rankings

Juniors Game Night: 1-27-18

From Saturday night...

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Saint John Sea Dogs 2 @ Halifax Mooseheads 5 (Saturday)

C/W Otto Somppi, HAL: 1-1-2, +1, 0 PIM, 1 SOG, 19/30 FO, *Second Star*
Season Totals: 40 GP, 16-41-57, +30, 20 PIM
’16-’17 Totals: 60 GP, 17-24-41, -7, 28 PIM

With the score knotted at 2-2 at the 2nd intermission. Somppi (pictured) scored the game-winner for the Mooseheads early in the 3rd as part of a Halifax 3-goal third period. Maxime Fortier (CLB, FA ELC) led the way for the Mooseheads scoring twice and adding two assists.

Ontario Hockey League

Barrie Colts 3 @ Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 4 (Saturday)

W Boris Katchouk, SSM: 0-1-1, E, 2 PIM, 4 SOG
Season Totals: 37 GP, 33-25-58, +34, 18 PIM
’16-’17 Season: 66 GP, 35-29-64, +18, 46 PIM

W Taylor Raddysh, SSM: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 3 SOG, 1/3 FO
Season Totals (SSM): 7 GP, 5-6-11, +4, 0 PIM
Season Totals (ER): 30 GP, 15-29-44, +10, 16 PIM
Season Totals: 37 GP, 20-35-55, +14, 16 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals: 58 GP, 42-67-109, +67, 37 PIM

Katchouk assisted on the game-winning 3rd period goal by Mac Hollowell (2018 draft eligible), as the Soo clipped the Colts at home. Tim Gettinger (NYR, 2016 5th round pick) led the way for the Greyhounds with a power play goal and an assist. Dmitry Solokov (MIN, 2016 7th round pick) paced Barrie, leading a 3rd period rally to knot the score at 3-3, with two goals and an assist on a goal by top prospect Andrei Svechnikov (2018 draft eligible).

Niagra Ice Dogs 6 @ Sudbury Wolves 2 (Saturday)

W Alexey Lipanov, SBY: 0-0-0, -4, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, 8/16 FO
Season Totals (SBY): 8 GP, 2-2-4, -8, 2 PIM
Season Totals (BAR): 35 GP, 11-19-30, +9, 10 PIM
Season Totals: 43 GP, 13-21-34, +1, 12 PIM
‘16-‘17 Totals (VHL-Russia): 21 GP, 3-5-8, +5, 8 PIM

Rough night for Lipanov and the Wolves as Sudbury allowed six goals in back-to-back contests. The Ice Dogs got goals from six different players and netminder Colton Incze (undrafted) stopped 29 Sudbury shots. Right-handed rearguard Peter Stratis (2018 draft eligible) had a goal and an assist for the Wolves in a losing effort

Western Hockey League

Kelowna Rockets 2 @ Red Deer Rebels 3 (OT) (Saturday)

D Cal Foote, KEL: 0-1-1, -1, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals: 39 GP, 10-31-41, +15, 31 PIM
‘15-‘16 Totals: 71 GP, 6-51-57, +39, 41 PIM

Cale Foote set up Kole Lind (VAN, 2017 2nd round pick) for the game-tying goal with 33 seconds left in regulation, but Kristian Reichel (2018 draft eligible), son of ex-NHL’er Robert Reichel, netted the OT game-winner for the hometown Rebels.

Regina Pats 1 @ Swift Current Broncos 3 (Saturday)
D Libor Hajek, REG: 1-0-1, -1, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals (REG): 6 GP, 2-3-5, -4, 2 PIM
Season Totals (SAS): 33 GP, 8-17-25, -10, 26 PIM
Season Totals: 39 GP, 10-20-30, -14, 28 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals: 65 GP: 4-22-26, -17, 81 PIM

Hajek scored the lone Pats goal, a power play marker to open the scoring in the 1st period. It was Hajek’s 10th goal of the season and his 30th point in less than 40 games. Hajek is now 2-3-5 in six games since being traded to Regina and is really looking like that blueliner Lightning Director of Amateur Scouting Al Murray touted when Tampa Bay traded Anthony DeAngelo to Arizona at the 2016 NHL Draft for the 2nd round pick. It’s been quite the breakout year for the Czech defenseman. Former Blues prospect and now Flames free agent signee Glenn Gawdin led the way for the victorious Broncos scoring twice for Swift Current, his 38th and 39th of the season, including the game-winning power play goal in the 3rd period. Speaking of breakout seasons, Gawdin sits either #3, #4, or #5 in the WHL in points, goals, assists, power play goals, and power assists, and clocks in #2 in the WHL in plus-minus at +41.

Moose Jaw Warriors 3 @ Medicine Hat Tigers 5 (Saturday)

C Brett Howden, MJ: 0-0-0, -2, 0 PIM, 0 SOG, 17/27 FO
Season Totals: 27 GP, 18-26-44, +20, 28 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals: 58 GP, 38-43-81, +14, 73 PIM

D Oleg Sosunov, MJ: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals: 49 GP, 7-14-21, +32, 50 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (MHL-Russia): 32 GP, 0-0-0, +1, 79 PIM

Brayden Burke (undrafted) gave the Warriors a 1-0 lead at the first intermission, but Tigers three 2nd period goals to take a 3-2 lead into the final frame, where Medicine Hat captain Mark Rassell (undrafted) would score his 42nd of the season and the eventual game-winner. David Quenneville (NYI, 2016 7th round pick), nephew of NHL defenseman Johnny Boychuk, paced the Tigers with two goals and an assist.

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.

Omaha Lancers 2 @ Lincoln Stars 1 (Saturday)

D Nick Perbix , OMA: 0-0-0, +1, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Season Totals: 29 GP, 1-13-14, +15, 12 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 10-30-40, 6 PIM
Committed to: St. Cloud State University

University of Michigan commit Jack Randl (2018 draft eligible) scored twice for the Lancers, as Omaha swept the home-and-home series against the Stars.

Minnesota State High School League

Eden Prairie Eagles 3 @ Edina Hornets 5 (Saturday)

F Sammy Walker, EDN: 1-0-1, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals (HS): 19 GP, 23-25-48, 10 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 22-24-46, 6 PIM
Committed to: University of Minnesota

Walker scored the opening goal just 3:26 into the game, eclipsing his goal totals from last season, as the Hornets out lasted the Eagles to improve to 18-1-0 on the season. Arizona State commit Demetrios Koumontzis (2018 draft eligible) scored twice for Edina, and Lewis Crosby (uncommitted) tallied a four-point night. For the Eagles, Chris Konin (uncommitted), collected three points including a 2nd period goal to draw Eden Prairie within one. The Hornets next play Tuesday night against the Centennial High Cougars.

AHL Game Night: 1-27-18 Marlies at Crunch

Johnsson's natural hat trick sinks Crunch.


Louis Domingue allowed 4 goals on 31 shots for the loss.

First Period
2:57 TOR Mueller (9), (Moore, Rychel)(PP)
16:05 SYR Cirelli (9), (Joseph, Archambault)

Second Period
6:23 TOR Johnsson (18), (Valiev)
10:14 TOR Johnsson (19), (Kapanen, Holl)
13:44 TOR Johnsson (20), (Kapanen, Holl)

Third Period
19:04 SYR Volkov (12), (Stephens, McBain)

If you're looking for silver linings, Anthony Cirelli maintained a five game point streak since returning to the lineup from injury.

Box score from

Crunch Overwhelmed in Loss to Marlies

By Jeremy Houghtaling

The Syracuse Crunch were overwhelmed by the top team in the AHL.

The Crunch evened the score late in the first period but the Marlies’ Andreas Johnsson netted a natural hat trick in the second, as Syracuse fell to Toronto, 4-2, at the Onondaga County War Memorial Saturday.

The Marlies now have earned a point in 11 straight games.

“They were, again tonight, the best team by far,” Crunch head coach Benoit Groulx said. “I thought (goalie Louis Domingue) kept us in the game and gave us a chance to win, but obviously not good enough.”

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