The long climb back begins now.
Johan Holmqvist stopped 12 of 13 shots faced for the win. Holmqvist improves to 10-8-0 this season. Brad Richards had 1 goal and 1 assist in the game while Dan Boyle had 2 assists. Vaclav Prospal snapped a two month long goalless drought and Filip Kuba added an insurance goal in the game. Individual helpers went to Martin St. Louis, Ruslan Fedotenko and Cory Sarich. The Lightning move back to 1 game under .500 and out of the basement of the Southeast Division.
Tampa Bay 11:28, Brad Richards 14 (power play) (Dan Boyle, Martin St. Louis)
Montreal 2:07, Alexander Perezhogin 5 (Mike Johnson, Francis Bouillon)
Tampa Bay 7:00, Vaclav Prospal 4 (Ruslan Fedotenko, Cory Sarich)
Tampa Bay 7:07, Filip Kuba 6 (power play) (Dan Boyle, Brad Richards)
Game sheet from NHL.com.
Johnstown rides a third period explosion back to the .500 mark.
Morgan Cey stopped 29 of 30 shots faced for the win as Gerald Coleman remains out with a groin strain. PJ Atherton lead the way offensively for the Chiefs with 1 goal and 2 assists as he continues a strong rookie pro campaign. Bryan Nathe had 2 goals while Dimitri Tarabrin and Andre Deveaux each had 1 goal and 1 assist. Radek Smolenak had a pair of helpers while Brandon Elliot and Eric Przepiorka notched the other Chiefs other goals. Finally, adding individual helpers were Zbynek Hrdel, Gus Katsuras and Jean Desrochers. Adam Henrich was tossed for unsportsmanlike conduct in a third period that saw the Chiefs outshoot Wheeling 24-4 and score six, SIX, consecutive power play goals to finish 6/8 on the night. Holy cow. Cey, Nathe and Smolenak were the game's three stars.
WHE Cameron, (14) (Bissonnette, Patrick), 8:40
JHN Nathe, (2) (Hrdel, Smolenak), 12:51
JHN Atherton, (4) (Martens, Smolenak), 0:40 (PP)
JHN Tarabrin, (1) (Desrochers, Martens), 3:12 (PP)
JHN Elliott, (5) (Atherton, Deveaux), 6:34 (PP)
JHN Deveaux, (3) (Atherton, Martens), 13:13 (PP)
JHN Nathe, (3) (Katsuras, Tarabrin), 13:47 (PP)
JHN Przepiorka, (3) , 17:21 (PP)
Game sheet from ECHL.com.
Boutin stopped 36 of 37 shots faced tonight to extend Springfield's winning streak to four games. The win moves Boutin to a positively brilliant 5-0-1 for the month of December with a minisculle 1.59 GAA and a gaudy .949 save percentage in 8 appearances. Ramo gets a lot of much deserved publicity and praise, but Boutin has actually matched or bested him in almost every statistical category but wins this year. Boutin's save percentage has improved 35 points from where he finished last season and he's climbing the learning curve at such a steep rate at some point we need to start talking about Boutin possibly earning some time in the NHL within the next year. Three years ago, goaltending was the biggest weakness of the organization prospect wise. Now it's almost a embarassment of riches.
Norm Milley led the Falcons offensively with a pair of assists as the team got goals from Doug O'Brien, Daniel Corso and Andy Delmore. Blair Jones, Marek Kvapil, Matt Smaby and Eric Healey added individual assists. Snakebitten David Spina failed on a penalty shot attempt early in the first period in the game. Boutin, Milley and Smaby were named the game's three stars.
The Falcons now move to 5 games over .500 at 19-14-1 for 39 points. Their win coupled with a Portland shootout loss to Worcester moves the Falcons into a tie for 2nd place in the Atlantic Division 4 points behind Manchester with a game in hand. It's the stuff that dreams are made of, it really is.
SPR O'Brien, (1) (Jones, Kvapil), 6:05
BRI Regier, (9) (Nielsen, Boguniecki), 8:38 (PP)
SPR Corso, (5) (Milley, Smaby), 18:49
SPR Delmore, (9) (Milley, Healey), 4:50 (PP)
Game sheet from TheAHL.com.
Kevin Quick has three assists in eight games this season for Salisbury Prep School out of Salisbury, Conn. The defensemen also has 4 PIM and a +4 rating.
The Crimson Knights recently finished second in the Flood-Mar Tournament December 15-17, losing 4-3 in double overtime to Hotchkiss School out of Lakeville, Conn. in the final.
Salisbury plays again in a double header in the Founders Jamboree on January 3. They open against Avon Old Farms School out of Avon, Conn. Then play Choate Rosemary Hall from Wallingford, Conn.
Team USA effectively stomped the life out of Slovakia's WJC hopes today defeating them 6-1 today in round robin play in Sweden. Vladimir Mihalik was -1 with 1 shot on goal in the game. Marek Bartanus was -2 with 2 penalty minutes in the game. The road gets worse for Slovakia as tomorrow they square off with defending tournament champion Canada in their final game of the round robin.
The college hockey holiday tournaments are underway....
Mike Lundin had an assist in Maine's 8-4 win over Western Michigan to open the Florida College Classic in Estero. He finished with an even rating in the game. It was the defensemen's 7th assist and 9th point of the season. The Black Bears face Cornell in tonights matchup.
Art Femenella was scoreless with 4 penalty minutes in Vermont's 3-0 win over Rensselaer in the Sheraton/TD Banknorth Catamount Cup Tournament. Femenella has compiled 28 PIM in 9 games this season. The Catamounts host St. Cloud State this evening.
John Wessbecker was scoreless and even in UMASS' shootout loss to Ferris State in the Dodge Holiday Classic in Minneapolis. Regulation ended in a 1-1 tie before the Bulldogs won the shootout 3-1. The Minutemen take on Alabama-Huntsville tonight.
According to Erlendsson's blog, Dimitry Afanasenkov has been claimed off waivers by the Philadelphia Flyers, removing the rest of his annual $738K salary from under the Lightning salary cap. Center Andreas Karlsson did clear waivers however, but he will not be sent down to Springfield and will be in the lineup tonight against Montreal.
JHN Atherton, (3) (Martens, Hrdel), 5:41 (PP)
TREN Pandolfo, (20) (Bertoli, Miller), 13:26
TREN Miller, (3) (Pandolfo, Manley), 13:56
Game sheet from ECHL.com.
Erlendsson posts more on his blog shedding light on the manuevering going on as the Lightning try to give themselves the cap flexibility to make a trade. According to Jay Feaster, if Afanasenkov and Karlsson clear waivers they will not be assigned to the minors unless a deal is done and the Lightning need the cap room to fit a new player in. The Lightning will have 30 days or 10 games played for each player in which to make a deal and send them down before they have to send each of them through waivers. Basically, Feaster is attempting to give himself a one month window in which he has the opportunity to free $1.2M under the cap to make a deal.
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