#8 Vermont Catamounts 4 @ #3 Northeastern Huskies 2
F Matt Marshall Ver: 0-0-0, 1 SOG, Even
Season totals: 14GP, 1-1-2, 8 PIM, +1
Vermont earns big split against higher ranked conference team. Marshall in lineup for both games.
Massachusetts Minutemen 4 @ UMASS-Lowell River Hawks 3
D John Wesbecker UMASS: 0-1-1, +1, 2 PIM
Season totals: 20GP, 0-4-4, 20 PIM, +10
Minutemen win rivalry match-up as Wessbecker picks up 10th career assist.
It was an organization-wide choke fest tonight.
Mike Smith allowed 4 goals on 21 shots in the loss.
04:37 TB Lecavalier (19), (Smaby, Prospal)
13:36 TB Prospal (10), (St. Louis, Lecavalier)(PP)
17:55 FLA Campbell (9), (Peltonen, Dvorak)
18:46 TB Malone (13), (St. Louis, Meszaros)
06:39 FLA Stillman (10), (Horton, Bouwmeester)(PP)
10:56 FLA Zednik (6), (Booth, Horton)
19:59 FLA Bouwmeester (10), (Stillman, Horton)(PP)
In the NHL, you can never take your foot off the gas and expect a team to lay down when you only have a two goal lead. Lukas Krajicek allowed himself to be outhustled by Nathan Horton to set up Florida's second goal and it was all downhill from there. By the time the Lightning got back to playing at full speed, Florida had gone into full blown trap mode. This is something they've done a couple of times before this season, and hopefully they'll finally get the message. No two goal lead is really safe.
Matt Smaby had 1 assist and 2 penalty minutes in 14:53.
David Koci was +1 in 4:08.
Kevin Quick was +1 with 3 shots in 17:52. He was also out on the ice when the Lightning pulled Smith at the end of the game. That speaks volumes about how the coaching staff feels about Quick.
Now, that said, I am really looking forward to the team getting Paul Ranger back in the lineup and healthy. Playing Lukas Krajicek and Steve Eminger 25+ minutes a night just isn't a sustainable way to win hockey games.
Karri Ramo allowed 6 goals on 44 shots in the overtime loss.
WOR Traverse, (3) , 0:34
NOR Kearns, (10) (Boyle, Smolenak), 1:55
NOR Jones, (7) (Keller, Kearns), 4:39
NOR Gratton, (3) (Keller), 15:23
NOR Jones, (8) (Kearns, Mihalik), 17:09
NOR Lawrence, (3) (Bochenski, Potulny), 18:19
WOR Armstrong, (16) (Zalewski, Traverse), 0:14
WOR Vesce, (13) (Kaspar, Westgarth), 17:37 (SH)
WOR McGinn, (9) (Demers, Moore), 18:53 (PP)
WOR Demers, (2) (Traverse, Armstrong), 8:36 (PP)
WOR Vesce, (14) (Moore, Fornataro), 3:04
That's a 5-1 lead choked away. A total team failure. And that's two points in two nights that the Admirals left on the table, which right now is the difference between being 9 points out of the last playoff spot and 11 points.
Lots of Admirals returned to the lineup this weekend from injury. Andy Rogers was -3 in his first game back in a month. Brandon Segal returned after about three weeks out and earned a penalty shot in the third that probably could've iced the victory, but could not convert. Juraj Simek played in his second game since a layoff of over a month.
Bracken Kearns and Blair Jones were the game's second and third stars.
Box score from TheAHL.com.
Ward continues to produce in Cape Breton ... another First Star for Fadden ... Tokarski strengthens league-leading stats ... Calgary knocks off Vancouver in battle of the WHL's top teams.
The Admirals can ill afford to leave single points on the table.
Mike McKenna allowed 2 goals on 41 shots before surrendering 3 goals on 7 shooters for the shootout loss.
NOR Kearns, (9) , 2:30 (SH)
NOR Bochenski, (13) (Potulny, Lundin), 3:54
WOR Mitchell, (1) (McGinn, Lemieux), 15:15
WOR Fornataro, (4) (Vesce), 6:00
WOR- Vesce, McGinn, Fornataro
NOR- Keller, Smolenak
Bracken Kearns was named the game's second star.
Box score from TheAHL.com.
I may not have much faith in this club's ownership or the GM, but I believe in Rick Tocchet.
Mike Smith stopped 31 of 32 shots for the win. He never looked completely settled or comfortable tonight, but the team played great in front of him.
05:21 PHI Lupul (15), (Carter, Carle)(PP)
14:48 TB St. Louis (17), (Stamkos, Recchi)
15:13 TB Meszaros (2), (Malone, Recchi)(PP)
16:51 TB Craig (2), (Pettinger, Hall)
12:34 TB Lecavalier (18), (unassisted)(PS)
I said after the debacle in San Jose that the last 36 hours was going to be a real test of whether or not Rick Tocchet has gotten these guys to buy into what he's doing in Tampa Bay. It would've been easy for these guys to lay down against a physical Philadelphia team on a short turnaround after a West Coast swing. They're down in the standings and they just got embarassed. It would've been so simple for these guys just to not show up tonight.
Test passed. A+. I don't know if these guys can play much better than they did tonight. Philly had no answer. They outhustled and outmuscled a Flyers franchise that has lived playing that style for some 30+ years. I'll say it again: I don't trust this ownership. I blame Len Barrie for a lot of the garbage that's happened this season, and Oren Koules is the guy whose bright idea it was to bring in Barry Melrose. I don't have a lot of faith in Brian Lawton either, as I'm not sure his philosophy meshes perfectly with what Tocchet is doing and he clumsily unloaded an entire clip in his foot with the Lecavalier situation. But Rick Tocchet? Mike Sullivan? Wes Walz? Cap Raeder? I believe in what these coaches are doing. I hope the rest of the clowns in ownership and the front office shut their yaps and quit the power plays and the backroom politics and take a look at what is happening on the ice. Rick Tocchet and his staff are building something here. Give the man what he needs to finish the job, and then get the hell out of the way.
Steve Downie had 2 penalty minutes, 3 shots, and 2 hits in a pesty, pesky 11:22. I love players in the Darcy Tucker/Sheldon Keefe agitator mold like fat kids love chocolate cake, and I can't wait until Downie is a full time member of this team.
David Koci had 10 penalty minutes in 6:55.
Kevin Quick had 1 shot, 1 hit, and 1 blocked shot in 10:07. Other than a pretty stinky early shift, he was good tonight in a game where, on paper, you'd expect him to struggle against a big, physical opponent. He's changing the pecking order in this organization with every shift.
Courtnall plays in BCHL All-Star Game ... Fadden and TC lose to Backlund and Kelowna ... Tokarski honored in pregame ceremony before making his 2009 WHL debut.