Syracuse Crunch

Drouin Nets Game-Winner in Pro Debut, Crunch Top Falcons


By Jeremy Houghtaling

Jonathan Drouin chipped the puck past the defenseman, rushed down the ice and wristed the puck into the top right corner.

Drouin, the Tampa Bay Lightning's third overall pick in 2013, netted the game-winning goal in the third period of his professional debut to lift the Syracuse Crunch to a 3-2 victory over the Springfield Falcons at the Onondaga County War Memorial Friday.

"I tried some passes today and they didn't go through," Drouin said. "I decided to shoot that one, and I'm pretty happy it went in."

Drouin, on a rehab assignment after sustaining a slight fracture in his right hand during training camp, was on the ice for all three Crunch goals.

"Those guys are easy to play with," Drouin said of his linemates. "(Jonathan) Marchessault is fast and (Cedric Paquette) thinks the game well."

Ikonen Focused on Making More Memories


By Jeremy Houghtaling

It was a feeling Henri Ikonen couldn’t describe.

Representing Finland in the 2014 World Junior Championships and winning his homeland’s first gold medal since 1998 was a memory he will never forget.

To top it off, the Finns beat host (and rival) Sweden in overtime.

“It was an unbelievable experience,” Ikonen said. “The best two weeks of my life.”

With his professional career just getting started, Ikonen is hoping to make many more memories like the one he had in Sweden. But the Syracuse Crunch forward is taking it one step at a time.

“I just go to the rink every morning and do my best there,” Ikonen said.

Blujus Settling In On Syracuse Blueline


By Jeremy Houghtaling

Two games into his professional career, Dylan Blujus is showing he belongs in the AHL.

The 20-year-old defenseman made his pro debut with the Syracuse Crunch Saturday against Springfield, and over two games last weekend had an even plus-minus rating with six shots.

"It went pretty well, just getting that first pro game under my belt felt nice," Blujus said. "Get the nerves out early, now I can start playing my game and start making plays."

Despite a few expected hiccups, Crunch coach Rob Zettler was impressed with the puck movement by each of his rookie defensemen.

Crunch Let Multiple Leads Slip Away in Loss to Wolf Pack


By Jeremy Houghtaling

For multiple members of the Crunch, the team deserved better.

Syracuse took three one-goal leads but let them slip away, as it fell to the Hartford Wolf Pack in overtime, 4-3, at the Onondaga County War Memorial Sunday.

"They kept coming, they didn't give up," said Crunch captain Mike Angelidis. "I thought we deserved a better fate, but that's how it goes sometimes."

After a scoreless first period, the teams combined for five goals over the first 11 minutes of the second.

AHL Game Night: 10-12-14 Wolf Pack at Crunch

Crunch clipped in OT.

HFD-4
SYR-3 (OT)

Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 4 goals on 27 shots for the loss in his AHL debut.

First Period
NO SCORING

Second Period
SYR Richard, (1) (Gourde, Marchessault), 1:35 (PP)
HFD Lindberg, (1) (Bourque, Mueller), 2:25 (PP)
SYR Paquette, (1) (Samson, Koekkoek), 4:37
HFD Mueller, (1) (Bodie, Bourque), 9:36
SYR Paquette, (2) (Vermin, Cote), 11:02

Third Period
HFD Hrivik, (1) (Kristo, Bodie), 6:35 (PP)

Overtime
HFD Lindberg, (2) (Bourque, Allen), 4:53

Cedric Paquette was the game's third star. Slater Koekkoek also made his AHL debut, chipping in an assist on Paquette's first goal.

Syracuse faces Springfield on Friday.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

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