2011 MasterCard Memorial Cup
Owen Sound Attack 3 vs. Kootenay Ice 7
D Geoffrey Schemitsch, OS: 0-0-0, -3, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 45 GP, 1-19-20, +17, 14 PIM
Playoff Totals: 20 GP, 1-10-11, +5, 2 PIM
Memorial Cup Totals: 4 GP, 0-2-2, -1, 0 PIM
G Michael Zador, OS: Did not dress.
Season Totals: 31 GP, 19-5-1-1, 3.23 GAA, .888 sv%, 0 SO
Playoff Totals: 6 GP, 4-0-0, 1.80 GAA, .940 sv%, 1 SO
OHL champion Owen Sound was eliminated from the Memorial Cup tonight after losing a tiebreaker game vs. WHL champion Kootenay, 7-3. The Attack beat the Ice 5-0 in their first game of the tournament, but with stars Joey Hishon (Avalanche) and Garret Wilson (Panthers) both out with concussions, they didnâ€™t have a lot to offer. They certainly tried, holding a 2-0 lead after the first period, but Kootenay exploded for three goals in the second period and four in the third to advance to the semifinals vs. tournament host Mississauga.
This marked the final game of the season for Lightning prospects Geoffrey Schemitsch and Michael Zador. After missing several weeks at the end of the regular season due to a broken arm, Schemitsch was finding his groove late in the playoffs. He is all but set to return to Owen Sound next season. Zador, who didnâ€™t dress again Thursday, likely played his last game as a Lightning prospect. The 2009 draft choice must be signed by June 1 and all indications are heâ€™ll be allowed to re-enter the draft. Zador has great size and superb raw skills, and was drafted in front of Jaroslav Janus by the Bolts, but he just struggles to stop the puck consistently. The signing of NCAA free agent Pat Nagle by the Lightning earlier this spring probably sealed Zadorâ€™s fate with the Bolts.
Speaking of deadlines, we learned from the Lightning today that overager Teigan Zahn of Saskatoon does not have to be signed by June 1 to retain his rights. Zahn, like all of the 2010 draftees, must be given a "bona fide offer" to maintain his rights for another year, but he is not in danger of being lost. The rugged character defenseman is out of junior eligibility so he could be signed by the Lightning's AHL affiliate to a one year contract.
Today the Norfolk Admirals announced the signing of Adam Janosik's teammate, Philip-Michael Devos of Gatineau, to a two-year AHL contract. Devos was the Q's leading scorer this year with 47 goals and 114 points in 68 games.
Schemitsch and Zador were the last two Lightning prospects playing this season, so the 2010-2011 prospect season has come to a close. Thank you for your faithful readership and keep up with us for Lightning analysis and pre-draft coverage.
It's an organization-wide Lightning vs. Penguins playoff matchup.
Jaroslav Janus allowed 3 goals on 20 shots for the victory.
NOR Pouliot, (25) (Ritola), 9:26
NOR Szczechura, (21) (Milam, Barberio), 15:46 (PP)
NOR Jones, (24) (Pouliot, Ritola), 19:22 (PP)
CT Mitchell, (8) (Couture, Valentenko), 1:02
NOR Ritola, (9) (Jones), 3:15
NOR Szczechura, (22) (Wright, Harju), 5:34
CT Valentenko, (5) (Yogan, Dupont), 13:10
CT Niemi, (3) (Grachev, Couture), 11:56 (PP)
NOR Angelidis, (20) , 17:36
In 56 games, Blair Jones set a new career high in points with 55. His previous high was 54 in 80 games two seasons ago.
Johan Harju finishes his rookie AHL campaign with 23 goals and 52 points in 63 games, and a +15 rating.
With the victory, Norfolk leapfrogged Binghamton into 4th place in the East Division. That means Norfolk will draw the top team in the Eastern Conference, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, in the first round. The Pens have the stingiest goaltending and defense in the conference, allowing just 183 goals (2.29 GAA). It'll also be an interesting meeting of old friends, as a key member of the Pens is BoltProspects alumni Ryan Craig. Craig had 19 goals and 48 points to finish 2nd on the Pens in scoring this season.
It's a brutally tough matchup. The key will be for Norfolk to focus on getting a win in the first two on the road. Get that win, settle into the grind of the series, and let the chips fall where they may. On paper, Norfolk is as talented as anyone in the conference, although there's a question mark in net with Dustin Tokarski recovering from getting slashed with a skate. If they get goaltending, though, they have a chance.
Box score from TheAHL.com.
MODO 2 @ Sodertalje 0
Riku Helenius, Sodertalje, 24/26, 2.11 GAA, .923 sv%
Season totals: 18 GP, 4-11-0, 0 SO, 3.03 GAA, .884 sv%
Kval till Elitserien totals: 5 GP, 2-1-1, 0 SO, 1.83 GAA, .925 sv%
Former Northern Michigan netminder Tuomas Tarkki made 22 saves to lead MODO to a 2-0 shutout of Sodertalje and a spot in the Elitserien next year. Lightning prospect netminder Riku Helenius made 24 stops, but in the absence of goal support Sodertalje's fate was sealed. The club will be relegated to the Allsvenskan next year. Vaxjo moves up to the Elitserien while MODO, barely, retains their spot in Sweden's top league.
So ends the entry level contract of former first round pick Helenius. The netminder was loaned out to Sodertalje toward the end of last season with the emergence of Jaroslav Janus and he played well in earning Sodertalje's starting job in last year's Kval till Elitserien tournament. This year, however, Helenius' play tanked in the first month of the Elitserien regular season. He lost his starting job to young Pontus Sjogren and did not regain it until the final 3 games of the the Kval till Elitserien round, which may be too little, too late to earn a qualifying offer from the Lightning.
A bad loss in Syracuse means reaching 3rd place will be difficult to achieve.
The brief lived strong run by Jaroslav Janus came to a close. He allowed 4 goals on 26 shots for the loss.
SYR Palmieri, (28) (Deschamps, Green), 6:36 (PP)
NOR Szczechura, (20) (Milam, Ritola), 9:13 (PP)
SYR Maroon, (24) (Bonino, Holland), 12:21 (PP)
SYR Maroon, (25) (Deschamps, Holland), 6:42 (PP)
SYR Holland, (1) (Bonino, Palmieri), 5:11 (PP)
NOR Labrie, (7) (Mihalik, Gudas), 9:05
NOR Pouliot, (24) (Milam), 10:36 (PP)
SYR Deschamps, (14) (Green), 19:35 (EN)
Paul Szczechura became the 4th Admiral to reach the 20 goal mark this season.
Norfolk gets nothing from its game in hand on Charlotte and Binghamton. They remain 3 points back of 3rd place Charlotte in the division and 1 point up on 5th place Binghamton. They need either 1 more point or a point lost by Connecticut to clinch the 3 seed in the Atlantic Division if they fall behind the Senators and enter the postseason via the crossover.
Box score from TheAHL.com.
Norfolk clings to 4th in the East Division by the slimmest of margins.
Jaroslav Janus shined making 42 saves in the overtime loss. He's allowed just 5 goals on 86 shots (.953 sv%) since spelling Dustin Tokarski against Hershey when Tic got cut with a skate. All of a sudden, he's playing under control and serving notice to the new organization why the old organization was so high on him. He's also finally justifying that #11 ranking he currently holds here on BoltProspects.
BNG Benoit, (11) (Daugavins, Smith), 11:46 (PP)
NOR Ritola, (8) (Jones, Mihalik), 16:01
BNG O'Brien, (24) (Condra, Greening), 3:48
Janus was the game's third star.
Blair Jones has points in 9 straight games. Mattias Ritola has points in 7 straight and 8 goals and 17 points over that span, including 6 multi-point games. Tonight was the first time since 2/26/11 that Ritola didn't have a multi-point effort.
Norfolk climbs to within 2 points of 3rd place Charlotte with 1 game in hand on the Checkers. They also now hold a slim 1 point lead over the 5th place Senators with 1 game in hand on Binghamton. If a crossover scenario were to occur, Norfolk could get the 3rd seed in the Atlantic Division if they finish with more points than the 3rd place Connecticut Whale. They now have a 5 point lead on Connecticut with 3 games left to go for each club, so they could easily clinch no worse than the 3 seed in the Atlantic in their upcoming games against the East Division's 6th place team, Syracuse.
Norfolk draws Syracuse tomorrow night and again on Saturday night before closing out the regular season on Sunday in Hartford against the Whale. Charlotte draws the now eliminated Worcester Sharks on Friday and again on Saturday. Binghamton goes to Rochester (7th in the North Division) on Friday and finishes at home against Adirondack (7th in the East Division) on Saturday. So, Norfolk likely will need 4 out of 6 possible points to hold off Binghamton for 4th, and they may need to run the table and hope Worcester can take at least a point away from Charlotte to get to 3rd place. 2 more points earned or lost by Connecticut will clinch no worse than the 3 seed in the Atlantic via the crossover. In that scenario, Norfolk would face Manchester. Unfortunately for Norfolk, their three most likely matchups (Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Hershey, or Manchester) happen to be the 3 best defensive teams in the Eastern Conference in terms of goals allowed. Great.
Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.