Crunch Rally For Win Over IceCaps, 3-2


By Jeremy Houghtaling

Feeling fresh with an exhausted backchecker ahead of him, Artem Sergeev decided to join the rush.

The Syracuse Crunch defenseman watched as teammate Vlad Namestnikov broke into the zone shorthanded, drew multiple St. John's IceCaps defenders to the left and slid the puck backdoor.

Sergeev easily tapped the eventual game-winner home with 2:32 remaining, as the Crunch rallied from a two-goal deficit to top the IceCaps, 3-2, at the Onondaga County War Memorial Wednesday.

"Vladdy has great vision," Sergeev said. "The goalie was looking at him, and he passed it to me. It was an empty net goal, pretty much."

AHL Game Night: 3-26-14 IceCaps at Crunch

Comeback Crunch start a positive streak for a change.

STJ-2
SYR-3

Kristers Gudlevskis allowed 2 goals on 28 shots for the victory. Since returning from the Olympics, Gudlevskis is 4-2-1 with 1 SO, a 1.97 GAA, and a .934 save percentage. Suffice it to say he's really taken off since that amazing performance against Canada in Sochi.

First Period
STJ Albert, (20) (MacKinnon), 4:14
STJ Chiarot, (5) (Gordon, Samson), 16:23

Second Period
SYR Connolly, (18) (Smith, Angelidis), 0:32

Third Period
SYR Angelidis, (11) (Paquette, Namestnikov), 2:43 (PP)
SYR Sergeev, (3) (Namestnikov), 17:28 (SH)

Artem Sergeev, Vladislav Namestnikov, and Mike Angelidis were the game's three stars. Now at 42 points in 46 games, Namestnikov has doubled his point production from a season ago when he had 21 points in 44 games. As with Gudlevskis' numbers, his continued production is impressive given how the rest of the roster has obviously labored a bit this season.

This was a far more impressive result than the 3-0 shutout of Adirondack given the IceCaps reside in 4th in the Eastern Conference at 20 games over .500 for the season. This is a result that gives you far more hope that this winning streak can actually be sustained.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

NA Juniors Playoffs Game Night: 3-24-14

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Halifax Mooseheads 4 @ Charlottetown Islanders 1
Mooseheads lead best-of-7 first round series, 3-0

C/W Jonathan Drouin, HAL: 1-1-2, +1, 2 PIM, 0 Hits, 4 SOG, 13/29 FO, *Third Star*
Playoff totals: 3 GP, 4-5-9, +3, 4 PIM
Season totals: 46 GP, 29-70-108, +49, 43 PIM
2011-2012 Season: 49 GP, 41-64-105, +48, 32 PIM

Philippe Gadoury (undrafted) had a hat trick and Jonathan Drouin had a goal and an assist to lead the Mooseheads to a 4-1 Game 3 win and a commanding 3-0 series lead. Drouin has been a game star in all three games so far. Halifax outshot Charlottetown in Game 3, 42-17.

Quebec Remparts 2 @ Rouyn-Noranda Huskies 5
Huskies lead best-of-7 first round series, 2-1

C/W Adam Erne, QUE: Did not play.
Season totals: 44 GP, 20-40-60, -3, 61 PIM
2012-2013 Season: 68 GP, 28-44-72, +11, 67 PIM

Erne remains out while recovering from a lacerated spleen. He is due back by the end of the month if the Remparts are still alive.

Ontario Hockey League

North Bay Battalion 0 @ Niagara IceDogs 2
IceDogs lead best-of-7 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, 2-1

D Dylan Blujus, NB: 0-0-0, -2, 4 PIM
Playoff totals: 3 GP, 1-0-1, E, 4 PIM
Season totals: 55 GP, 4-26-30, +12, 56 PIM
2012-13 totals: 68 GP, 2-27-29, -8, 57 PIM

Second-seeded North Bay finds themselves down 2-1 in the series after a shutout loss in St. Catherines on Tuesday. Brent Moran (2014), one of the top undrafted goaltender prospects, stopped 42 shots for the win.

Barrie Colts 6 @ Sudbury Wolves 3
Colts lead best-of-7 Easter Conference Quarterfinals, 3-0

D Jake Dotchin, BAR: 1-0-1, E, 0 PIM
Playoff totals: 3 GP: 2-1-3, +1, 6 PIM
Season totals: 63 GP, 11-25-36, +22, 121 PIM
2012-13 totals: 66 GP, 4-18-22, E, 81 PIM

Dotchin scored a shorthanded goal for the Colts, helping Barrie to a 3-0 series lead over Sudbury with a 6-3 Game 3 win.

Kingston Frontenacs 4 @ Peterborough Petes 2
Frontenacs lead best-of-7 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, 3-0

W Henri Ikonen, KGN: 0-1-1, +1, 2 PIM
Playoff totals: 3 GP, 1-4-5, +3, 2 PIM
Season totals: 54 GP, 25-45-70, +17, 49 PIM
2012-13 totals: 61 GP, 22-29-51, +2, 30 PIM

Kingston is one win away from advancing to the Eastern Conference Semifinals after a 4-2 win in Peterborough on Tuesday. Ikonen’s assist came on an empty net goal with 30 seconds left.

KHL Playoff Game Day: 3-25-14

KHL Eastern Conference Semifinals
(6)Novosibirsk 2 vs. (1)Magnitogorsk 3
Magnitogorsk Wins the Series 4-0
Vasily Koshechkin, Magnitogorsk, Win, 30/32, 2.01 GAA, .938 sv%
Regular season totals: 51 GP, 30-12-8, 9 SO, 1.88 GAA, .940 sv%
Playoff totals: 9 GP, 8-1-0, 0 SO, 1.90 GAA, .935 sv%

Magnitogorsk completed their second round sweep of Novosibirsk, disposing of the Eastern Conference sixth seed 3-2 in Game Four. Metallurg was led by 2 goals by former Blue Jackets draft pick Sergei Mozyakin. Magnitogorsk has lost just one time in the first two rounds of this season's playoffs.

(4)Ufa 3 vs. (2)Astana 2 (OT)
Ufa Leads the Series 3-1
Andrey Vasilevskiy, Ufa, Win, 38/40, 1.84 GAA, .950 sv%
Regular season totals: 28 GP, 14-8-5, 3 SO, 2.21 GAA, .923 sv%
Playoff totals: 11 GP, 7-4-0, 0 SO, 2.20 GAA, .927 sv%

Ex-Canucks draft pick Kirill Koltsov's power play goal 5:03 into Overtime delivered Ufa a 3-2 Game Four win over Astana and a commanding 3-1 lead in their second round series. The stellar play of Lightning prospect Andrey Vasilevskiy allowed Ufa to overcome a 27-40 shot deficit in the contest to take the victory. Astana got an assist from former Lightning defenseman Mike Lundin in defeat.

NHL Game Night: 3-24-14 Senators at Lightning

Lethargic Lightning manufacture a point.

OTT-4
TB-3 (SO)

Ben Bishop allowed 3 goals on 32 shots before allowing 1 of 3 to convert in the penalty shot session for the SO Loss. He played solidly tonight, and it's just regrettable the team has stopped converting for him in shootouts.

First Period
3:57 OTT Karlsson (20), (Greening)
5:07 TB Kucherov (9), (Johnson, Brown)

Second Period
8:12 OTT Spezza (19), (Michalek, Karlsson)
8:56 OTT Turris (22), (Stone, Erik Karlsson)
13:26 TB Hedman (12), (Filppula, Palat)(PP)

Third Period
5:44 TB Stamkos (21), (Palat, Callahan)(PP)

Overtime
NO SCORING

Shootout
OTT- Spezza
TB- NONE

Tom Pyatt was the game's third star.

I could complain about a point being left on the table with the Lightning unable to convert a 4-on-3 PP opportunity in Overtime. But, no, I think I'll take the point and run tonight. The fact is the Lightning played flat, stupid hockey for the first 33 minutes of tonight's game and they were lucky not to be down by 3 or 4 goals by the time they woke up and got their heads in the games. The turnovers were awful. The defensive zone coverage was awful. Bishop and luck kept them within 2 goals and Ottawa's lack of discipline gave them the power play opportunities to steal a point away from a night they played poorly. So, I'll take it and move on.

Mike Kostka was +1 with 2 shots, 2 hits, and 1 blocked shot in 17:29. He was crafty tonight at both ends of the rink and looks due for some more points soon. He was patient when he needed to be and opportunistic when chances came his way, and looked really good tonight.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

KHL Playoff Game Day: 3-24-14

KHL Eastern Conference Semifinals
(6)Novosibirsk 1 vs. (1)Magnitogorsk 2 (OT)
Magnitogorsk Leads the Series 3-0
Vasily Koshechkin, Magnitogorsk, Win, 33/34, 0.96 GAA, .971 sv%
Regular season totals: 51 GP, 30-12-8, 9 SO, 1.88 GAA, .940 sv%
Playoff totals: 8 GP, 7-1-0, 0 SO, 1.89 GAA, .935 sv%

Metallurg Magnitogorsk moved one step closer to the KHL Eastern Conference Finals, defeating Novosibirsk 2-1 in overtime in Game Three to take a commanding 3-0 series lead. Ex-Predators draft pick Denis Platonov had the winner for Magnitogorsk 2:11 into Overtime to seal the victory. Ex-Lightning draft pick Dmitri Kazionov assisted on Platonov's goal.

(4)Ufa 5 vs. (2)Astana 2
Ufa Leads the Series 2-1
Andrey Vasilevskiy, Ufa, Win, 15/17, 2.00 GAA, .882 sv%
Regular season totals: 28 GP, 14-8-5, 3 SO, 2.21 GAA, .923 sv%
Playoff totals: 10 GP, 6-4-0, 0 SO, 2.24 GAA, .924 sv%

Andrey Vasilevskiy only had to face 17 shots as Ufa crushed Barys Astana 5-2 in their pivotal Game Three Eastern Conference Semifinals matchup. Ex-Nashville Predator Antti Pihlstrom had 1 goal and 1 assist in the win for Ufa. Ex-Lightning forward Brandon Bochenski had a goal in defeat for Astana.

Bolt Prospect of the Week: March 24, 2014

We continue our Bolt Prospect of the Week award, an honor (virtually) given to one Tampa Bay Lightning prospect for their recent contributions on and off the ice.

The Bolt Prospect of the Week for March 24, 2014 is … Andrey Vasilevskiy, G, Salavat Yulaev Ufa (KHL – Russia).

If playoff experience is instrumental in a prospect’s development, Andrey Vasilevskiy is being subject to a symphony.

Ufa’s teenage goaltender has been in net for all of the club’s playoff games so far, including a pressure-packed Game 7 against Novgorod last Tuesday. Down 2-0 in the series, he turned in a triple-overtime gem in Game 3, and allowed just two goals in each of Games 4 and 5 before a Game 6 loss.

His team was outplayed in Game 7, being outshot 35-21, but Vasilevskiy turned aside all but one shot en route to a 2-1 win. Ufa had a 2-0 lead in the game and survived with Vasilevskiy under siege in the third period.

NA Juniors Playoffs Game Night: 3-23-14

Ontario Hockey League

Niagara IceDogs 3 @ North Bay Battalion 2
Best-of-7 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals tied, 1-1

D Dylan Blujus, NB: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM
Playoff totals: 2 GP, 1-0-1, +2, 0 PIM
Season totals: 55 GP, 4-26-30, +12, 56 PIM
2012-13 totals: 68 GP, 2-27-29, -8, 57 PIM

North Bay fought back from a 2-0 deficit in the third period to tie the game, only to lose it with 41 seconds left in regulation. Game 3 is in St. Catherines.

Peterborough Petes 4 @ Kingston Frontenacs 5 (OT)
Frontenacs lead best-of-7 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, 2-0

W Henri Ikonen, KGN: 0-3-3, +1, 0 PIM
Playoff totals: 2 GP, 1-3-4, +2, 0 PIM
Season totals: 54 GP, 25-45-70, +17, 49 PIM
2012-13 totals: 61 GP, 22-29-51, +2, 30 PIM

Ikonen had three assists in regulation and possible Lightning draft target Roland McKeown (2014) scored in overtime to lead the Fronts to a 2-0 series lead over the Petes. Game 3 will be in Peterborough.

AHL Game Day: 3-23-14 Crunch at Phantoms

Crunch pass a gut check.

SYR-3
ADK-0

Kristers Gudlevskis stopped all 31 shots he faced for the shutout victory. That's the 5th shutout of his rookie campaign and he's 4 games above .500 with a save percentage than has risen to .909. Those are especially impressive numbers given where the Crunch currently are in the standings.

First Period
SYR Rankin, (13) (Korobov, Marchessault), 6:25 (PP)

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
SYR Connolly, (17) (Nesterov, Paradis), 2:34 (PP)
SYR Paradis, (4) (Angelidis), 4:24

Gudlevskis, Philippe Paradis, and Brett Connolly were the game's three stars.

After an embarrassing 4-game losing streak where the Crunch hardly looked like a competitive AHL team, they showed some pride today to strike back for the 3-0 victory. Now, granted Adirondack is in dead last in the Eastern Conference. But, this is a team the Crunch should beat if they apply themselves and they applied themselves to the task today. That's something they definitely needed.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

NCAA Game Night: 3-22-14

Miami RedHawks 3 vs Denver Pioneers 4
NCHC Finals

F Jimmy Mullin, MIA: Did not play
Season totals: 19 GP, 1-6-7, +3, 23 PIM
2012-2013 totals: 38 GP, 6-8-14, E, 14 PIM

Mullin was scratched with a lower body injury. The RedHawks’ season is likely over after their end-of-year streak that got them within a goal or two of winning the conference title. Mullin will be a senior next year.

Western Michigan Broncos 0 vs No. 10 North Dakota 5
NCHC Third Place Game

F Brendan O’Donnell, UND: 0-2-2, +2, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Season totals: 32 GP, 7-10-17, +7, 8 PIM
2012-2013 totals: 29 GP, 2-8-10, E, 20 PIM

O’Donnell had two assists to help North Dakota to a win in the NCHC Third Place Game.

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