AHL Game Night 2/1: Admirals at Senators

Radek Smolenak!

NOR-4
BNG-3 (SO)

Marc Denis stopped 32 of 35 shots faced in regulation and overtime including a penalty shot by Greg Mauldin before stopping 3 of 5 shooters for the shootout victory.

First Period
BNG Mapletoft, (12) (Lee, Zubov), 3:01
NOR Smolenak, (3) (Szczechura, Lessard), 4:26
BNG Nikulin, (6) (Kinch, Hamel), 7:48 (PP)

Second Period
NOR Szczechura, (7) (Leach), 11:26
NOR Wanvig, (14) (Szczechura), 17:23
BNG Zubov, (13) (Mauldin), 17:36

Third Period
NO SCORING

Overtime
NO SCORING

Shootout
NOR- Henrich, Lessard, Smolenak
BNG- Mapletoft, Nycholat

Paul Szczechura and Smolenak were named first and second stars of the game. I'm pretty well sold on Szczechura. He needs to be back with the Admirals next season. Whoever the pro scout was the IDed this young man in Iowa needs a pat on the back.

And Smolenak extends his points streak to 5 games.

This is starting to remind me a bit of the 2004-2005 season in Springfield when for the first 1/2 to 2/3 of the year the Falcons got their heads kicked in against NHLer laiden lockout rosters. In the final 1/4 of that season some of the Lightning's young prospects like Paul Ranger and Evgeny Artyukhin started to emerge and gain confidence and by the next season they were in the NHL. The team is still 13 games under .500 and there should be no dillusions that this was a successful season overall, but even from struggling young players can learn important lessons and carry them on into successful NHL careers. It's happened before in this organization, it might be happening now.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

Quick Dismissed by Michigan

Culled from the message board...

Rivals.com is reporting the University of Michigan has dismissed freshman defenseman Kevin Quick from the team for an undisclosed violation of team rules.

MLive.com/Ann Arbor News reports:

Quote:
Coach Red Berenson did not give the specifics of why he dismissed the freshman defenseman from the program but said once he learned all of the details Thursday of what Quick did, it was the right thing to do.

"Obviously, it was serious enough that we had to let him go," Berenson said. "It was just a total violation of our team trust and our rules.

"He's a good kid, and it's been a long, long week for me having to make this decision, but it was the only thing to do."

Michigan players declined to comment about the dismissal. Quick could not be reached Friday for comment.

...

Berenson has suspended players in season before for academic or behavior reasons, but rarely has someone been immediately dismissed.

"I didn't know everything until (Thursday), and once I did, it was a quick decision," Berenson said.

Quick, a 3rd round pick in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft, is considered one of the Lightning's brightest young prospects.

Hat tip to message board member Matt.

ECHL Game Night 1/31: Columbia @ Mississippi

Ryan Munce stopped 27 shots and Marek Kvapil scored the game winner on a breakaway as the Sea Wolves defeated the Columbia Inferno 2-1 Thursday night. Munce was named the game's First Star while Kvapil earned Third Star honors. It was Munce's 12th win on the season, and it was Kvapil's third goal and fifth point in his first two games back in Mississippi after spending a couple of weeks in Norfolk. Head coach Steffon Walby seems to have found a lethal line combination in Kvapil, rookie and All-Star Ryan Menai, and Jason Tejchma.

Thursday's Elitserien Scores

Johan Harju was scoreless in Lulea's 5-4 loss to HV 71.

Andreas Holmqvist was scoreless in Frolunda's 3-2 loss to Linkopings.

NHL Game Night 1/31: Canucks at Lightning

Lightning live to fight another day.

VAN-3
TB-4

Karri Ramo got the win stopping 23 of 26 shots faced.

First Period
Vancouver 2:41, Luc Bourdon 2 (Alex Burrows, Taylor Pyatt)
Tampa Bay 7:56, Vaclav Prospal 21 (power play) (Martin St. Louis, Brad Richards)
Vancouver 16:24, Taylor Pyatt 13 (Ryan Kesler, Alex Burrows)

Second Period
Tampa Bay 3:12, Chris Gratton 8 (Jan Hlavac, Craig MacDonald)
Tampa Bay 16:39, Vincent Lecavalier 31 (Martin St. Louis, Brad Richards)

Third Period
Tampa Bay 8:34, Brad Richards 16 (Martin St. Louis, Filip Kuba)
Vancouver 19:35, Alexander Edler 3 (shorthanded) (Mason Raymond, Daniel Sedin)

The Lightning stayed within 9 points of division leading Carolina with 2 games in hand. Is it enough to keep the Lightning from being sellers at the deadline? Probably not. If they can string some wins together it might be enough to keep the Lightning from making big structural changes though.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

SP Times: Lightning wants new No.1 goaltender

Quote:
Lightning goaltender Johan Holmqvist said he always is searching for answers to a season of sharp ups and downs.

Rookie Karri Ramo said he still has lots of work to do learning positioning and finding a "middle ground" between being patient in net and aggressive.

Jay Feaster, though, has decided there is no time to wait.

For the rest of this story by Damian Cristodero, see the St. Petersburg Times.

N.A. Juniors Game Night: 1/30

Wednesday night's highlights:

  • Stars for Jung and Helenius
  • Ward scores again
  • Potential draft target Kyle Beach returns from an injury that one coach originally called "a charade."

Lightning Send Wanvig to Norfolk

The Tampa Bay Lightning have re-assigned right wing Kyle Wanvig to Norfolk of the American Hockey League today, Executive Vice President and General Manager Jay Feaster announced.

Wanvig, 6-foot-2, 208 pounds, played in seven consecutive games since his recall on January 5 before being scratched for three consecutive games. He scored one goal and averaged 10:09 of ice time per game while recording 12 hits and three blocked shots. He was selected to represent the Admirals in the 2008 AHL All-Star Game but missed it while he was recalled to Tampa Bay.

Prior to his recall Wanvig skated in 33 games with the Admirals, leading the team in goals (13), assists (23) and points (36). The 6-foot-2, 210-pound Calgary native was acquired by the Lightning in a 2007 trade with Atlanta, and appeared in four games for Tampa Bay last season.

No Timetable for Wessbecker's Return

Lightning 2006 7th rounder and University of Massachusetts-Amherst junior defenseman John Wessbecker has not played since November 30 due to an undisclosed injury. According to the New England Daily Collegian, quoting recently re-signed UMass head coach Don Cahoon, there is no timetable for Wessbecker's return to the UMass lineup, and Cahoon is not going to hurry him back.

"He's definitely out for the foreseeable future. There's no way of knowing exactly how long because of the type of injury," Cahoon told the Collegian.

Any specifics regarding Wessbecker's injury have not been released.

Wessbecker has 3 assists in 14 games this year for the Minutemen, and is 1-6-7 in his 88 game collegiate career. Wessbecker, from The Blake School in Minnesota, was All-Conference and won the Hobey Baker Award for character in his senior year of high school.

N.A. Juniors Game Night: 1/29

Lethbridge Hurricanes 3 @ Chilliwack Bruins 2 (SO)
C Mitch Fadden, LET: 1-1-2, +1, 2 PIM (roughing), *Second Star*

Fadden helped the ‘Canes fight back from a 2-0 deficit with his 25th goal and a primary power play assist. Fadden also scored the shootout winner for Lethbridge. The Hurricanes are third in the Eastern Conference.

Prince Albert Raiders 2 @ Everett Silvertips 1
D Dane Crowley, EVT: 0-0-0, +1, 2 PIM (roughing)

Everett is currently fifth in the Western Conference. Prince Albert is 20 points out of a playoff spot.

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