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AHL Game Night: 3-21-15 Comets at Crunch

Comets streak past Crunch in the Third.

UTI-4
SYR-2

Allen York allowed 3 goals on 36 shots for the loss.

First Period
NO SCORING

Second Period
SYR Richard, (12) (Dotchin, Blujus), 5:41 (PP)
UTI Baertschi, (11) (Blain, Friesen), 6:54

Third Period
UTI Conacher, (6) (Andersson, Friesen), 2:00
UTI Shinkaruk, (9) (O'Reilly, Corrado), 4:01
SYR Marchessault, (18) (Richard, Blujus), 15:27 (PP)
UTI Baertschi, (12) (Friesen, Grenier), 19:15 (EN)

Tanner Richard was the game's third star. Dylan Blujus had his 3rd multi-point game of the season, ushering in a brief period of #Blujuspalooza.

Syracuse may have lost the war tonight, but at least the AHL's abbreviation for them isn't an acronym for Urinary Tract Infections. Escalate the rivalry with Grade A scalding rhetoric. It's always good for the soul.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

Crunch Falter in Third, Fall to Comets


By Jeremy Houghtaling

Trailing by one late in the third period, the Syracuse Crunch threw everything it could on net.

The shots either hit a body in front, Utica goalie Joe Cannata deflected the puck wide, or the shots just missed the mark, as the Crunch couldn't find the equalizer in a 4-2 loss to the Comets at the Onondaga County War Memorial Saturday.

"I was shocked it didn't go in," said Syracuse head coach Rob Zettler. "(Mike Angelidis) had a chance to bury one, (Ryan) Martindale had it all alone in front. I haven't seen the replay, so I don't know if he just missed the net or it was blocked. I thought for sure we were going to tie it there and make something out of nothing, but we weren't able to."

Juniors Game Night: 3-20-15

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Sherbrooke Phoenix 6 @ Val-d’Or Foreurs 3

C Cameron Darcy, SHR: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG, 0 Hits
With Sherbrooke: 36 GP, 20-25-45, -7, 34 PIM
With Cape Breton: 19 GP, 1-13-14, -6, 14 PIM
Season totals: 55 GP, 21-38-59, -12, 50 PIM
2013-2014 Season: 65 GP, 35-47-82, +3, 51 PIM

Sherbrooke got two goals from Habs prospect Daniel Audette en route to a 6-3 road win Friday. Sherbrooke is sixth of 18 on the league table. The top 16 make the playoffs.

Rimouski Oceanic 4 @ Quebec Remparts 3

W Adam Erne, QUE: 0-0-0, -2, 0 PIM, 4 SOG, 7/16 FO, 2 Hits
Season totals: 59 GP, 40-44-84, +22, 102 PIM
2013-2014 Season: 48 GP, 21-41-62, -3, 65 PIM

Erne was held off the scoresheet as Rimouski won in Quebec City.

Ontario Hockey League

Windsor Spitfires 2 @ Sarnia Sting 7

W Cristiano DiGiacinto, WSR: 0-0-0, -2, 0 PIM
Season totals: 62 GP, 21-23-44, -15, 100 PIM
2013-14 totals: 50 GP, 17-11-28, +8, 101 PIM

DiGiacinto and Windsor have one game left this season after losing 7-2 in Sarnia Friday. The Spitfires are out of the playoff race. They play at Sault Ste. Marie Saturday.

Western Hockey League

Brandon Wheat Kings 6 @ Moose Jaw Warriors 7 (SO)

C Brayden Point, MJ: 1-2-3, +1, 0 PIM
Season totals: 59 GP, 37-47-84, +9, 46 PIM
2013-14 totals: 72 GP, 36-55-91, -27, 53 PIM

What a gutsy performance by Moose Jaw. Needing a win to stay alive in the playoff race, the Warriors scratched and clawed their way to a 7-6 shootout win over the conference’s top team. Point was the first shooter for Moose Jaw in the shootout, but had his attempt saved. Moose Jaw needs Swift Current, who is two points ahead of the Warriors, to lose its final game while the Warriors win theirs against the Wheat Kings.

Calgary Hitmen 2 @ Kootenay Ice 1

D Ben Thomas, CAL: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM
Season totals: 59 GP, 7-24-31, +15, 26 PIM
2013-14 totals: 72 GP, 7-24-31, +11, 39 PIM

Calgary is one point ahead of Medicine Hat for the division title with both teams having one game remaining.

Note: Dominik Masin (OHL Peterborough) is out for the season after undergoing surgery for facial fractures.

NCAA Game Night: 3-20-15

New Hampshire Wildcats 1 vs No. 3 Boston University Terriers 4
Hockey East Semifinals

D John MacLeod, BU: 0-1-1, +4, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season totals: 30 GP, 2-7-9, +17, 46 PIM
2013-2014 totals (USHL): 19 GP, 1-4-5, +1, 36 PIM

MacLeod returned to the BU lineup after a 3-game absence and notched an assist in the Terriers’ semifinal win over UNH. BU will play No. 12 UMass-Lowell for the conference championship.

No. 18 St. Cloud State Huskies 3 vs No. 1 North Dakota 1
NCHC Semifinals

F Brendan O’Donnell, UND: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season totals: 36 GP, 13-6-19, +12, 35 PIM
2013-2014 totals: 34 GP, 7-11-18, +7, 10 PIM

SCSU scored twice in the final minute of the first period and held on for the upset win over No. 1 North Dakota. UND will play Denver in the third place game on Saturday. Miami plays the Huskies for the championship. UND will get an at-large bid to the national tournament.

No. 17 Harvard Crimson 5 vs No. 7 Quinnipiac Bobcats 2
ECAC Semifinals

F Brian Hart, HAR: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season totals: 34 GP, 7-9-16, +4, 19 PIM
2013-2014 totals: 30 GP, 7-8-15, -8, 20 PIM

F Matthew Peca, QU: 0-1-1, -2, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season totals: 37 GP, 7-28-35, +1, 25 PIM
2014-2015 totals: 40 GP, 12-26-38, +4, 16 PIM

Hart and Harvard scored an upset win over top-seeded Quinnipiac in the ECAC semifinals, moving the Crimson on to the finals against Colgate. As for Peca and Quinnipiac, they will wait to see if they receive an at-large bid to the national tournament. They need some help in the form of Harvard winning the ECAC and the higher seeds taking their conference tournaments. There’s a good possibility Peca played his last collegiate game. If he chooses to sign with Tampa Bay, he could join AHL Syracuse as soon as his collegiate career is officially over.

No. 13 Minnesota Golden Gophers 3 vs Ohio State Buckeyes 0
Big 10 Semifinals

G Adam Wilcox, MIN: Win, 39 saves on 39 shots, shutout, *First Star*
Season totals: 36 GP, 21-11-3, 2.39 GAA, .913 sv%, 5 SO
2013-2014 totals: 38 GP, 26-6-6, 1.97 GAA, .932 sv%, 4 SO

Wilcox recorded his sixth shutout of the season with a herculean performance in the Big 10 semifinals. The shutout was the 13th of his career, tying the school record. The junior goaltender, who was named a Big 10 Second Team All-Star earlier this week, stopped all 22 shots he faced in the third period with the Gophers nursing a 1-0 lead until halfway through the final stanza. Minnesota advanced to play Michigan for the championship game. A win propels them to the national tournament.

*USCHO poll used

Koekkoek Nets Game-Winner, Crunch Top Penguins in OT


By Jeremy Houghtaling

With time winding down in overtime, Slater Koekkoek made a bold prediction.

The Syracuse Crunch defenseman was next to hit the ice during the three-on-three portion of the extra session, but took a moment to tell fellow rookie Dylan Blujus that he would end the game.

Koekkoek's words proved to be prophetic, as his game-winner 4:52 into overtime lifted the Crunch to a 2-1 victory over the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins at the Onondaga County War Memorial Friday. Syracuse has won four straight.

"Blujus and I were sitting on the bench, and (assistant coach Trent) Cull had just said I was the next D out," Koekkoek said. "I looked over at Blue and I said 'Don't worry Blue, I got this one.'"

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