The Lightning prospects turned in an impressive defensive effort but drop their first game 1-0 to the Thrasher prospects in the opening match of the Traverse City Prospect Tournament today. Dustin Tokarski started in net for the Bolt prospects and went the distance, stopping 20 of 21 shots and looked sharp throughout the match. The only black mark was defenseman Paul Postma's even-strength blast from the left point in the first period. Atlanta's Chris Carrozzi stopped 26 Lightning shots including a great left pad save on a Chris Lawrence turnaround from the slot with 46 seconds remaining. Lawrence is wearing the 'C' for the Traverse City squad.
Ty Wishart led all Bolt prospects with 6 shots on goal and was a visible physical presence on the blueline, using the hip and shoulder on more than one occasion. Wishart was paired with Norfolk Admiral Daryl Boyle, and saw plenty of PP time. Tampa's top line consisted of Mitch Fadden centering Lawrence and Dana Tyrell. Lawrence and Boyle both fired 4 shots at Corrozzi. Free agent backliner Jeff May was paired with Mark Barberio. Free agent invitee centerman Brett Parnham was the only scratch.
See the boxscore for the remainder of individual stats, but the real story was the goaltending battle between Tokarski and Corrozzi. The Lightning three stars of the game were Tokarski, Wishart, and Boyle.
This game will be shown as tape delay Sunday night at 8pm ET on the NHL Network. The Lightning play their next game Sunday night at 7:30pm CT against the Detroit Red Wings prospects.
In-game reports courtesy of Mike Morreale who is blogging the Traverse City tournament at NHL.com
Victoria Grizzlies 5
@ Alberni Bulldogs 1
Justin Courtnall, LW, Vic: 0-1-1, 4 PIM
Courtnall set up the game's opening goal by drawing the goalie to one side and then feeding his linemate for an easy tap-in goal.
Alexei Glukhov did not play in Mytischi's 3-2 win over Spartak.
Dimitri Kazionov was scoreless in Kazan's 4-3 loss to Dynamo Moscow.
Vasily Koshechkin did not play in Togliatti's 2-1 loss to Nizhnekamsk.
Albert Vishnyakov had a helper in Novokuznetsk's 6-1 win over Cherepovets.
Vitali Smolianinov and Ilya Solarev were scoreless in Astana's 4-3 loss to Magnitogorsk.
Alexei Glukhov did not play in Mytischi's 4-1 win over Minsk.
Anton But was scoreless in CSKA's 6-5 shootout loss to Spartak.
Albert Vishnyakov was scoreless in Nizhnekamsk's 4-2 loss to Dynamo Moscow.
Vasily Koshechkin did not play in Togliatti's 2-1 loss to Omsk.
Anton But was scoreless in CSKA's 3-1 win over MVD.
Albert Vishnyakov had a goal in Novokuznetsk's 7-0 pasting of Riga.
Dimitri Kazionov had 1 assist in Kazan's 4-0 win over Voskresensk.
The Fort Wayne News-Sentinel is reporting that the Norfolk Admirals have inked another Komet to a two-way AHL/IHL contract. Minor league veteran defensman Jason Beckett will report to the Admirals training camp and will subject be to reassignment to Fort Wayne if he doesn't make the Norfolk squad out of camp. The 6.03, 213 lbs. blueliner played in Austria last season after racking up nearly 240 games in AHL campaigns with Philadelphia, Milwaukee, Houston, Syracuse, and Grand Rapids. Beckett was a 1998 2nd round pick of the Philadelphia Flyers.
Anton But was scoreless in CSKA's 3-2 win over Novgorod.
Albert Vishnyakov had a goal and was +1 in Novokuznetsk's 5-2 win over Minsk.
Dimitri Kazionov was scoreless and -1 in Kazan's 4-2 win over Omsk.
Ilja Solarev was scoreless in Astana's 2-1 shootout win over Nizhnekamsk. Also on Astana's roster is the immortal Vitali Smolianinov. I kid you not.
When Lightning prospects last took the ice, Tampa co-owners Oren Koules and Len Barrie squared off behind the benches in an intra squad scrimmage to close last month's Prospect Camp in Victoria, BC. But when Tampa prospects take to the ice September 13th in Traverse City, MI for the 8 team tournament, the owners will leave the coaching to the professionals. The Lightning announced that Norfolk Admirals head coach Darren Rumble will lead the year's Traverse squad along with Norfolk assistant coach Alan May.
It was also confirmed that the remaining player on Tampa's roster will be free agent invitee Luciano Aquino. The 5.10, 200 lbs right winger put up a gaudy 41-50-91 in 74 games last year for the IHL's Fort Wayne Komets enroute to winning the IHL Rookie-of-the-Year honors. Aquino is a 2005 7th round pick of the New York Islanders and is no stranger to offensive proclivities. He was a point-per-gamer for the ECHL's Utah Grizzlies in the 2006-07 season, and put up a tawdry 2.25 point-per-game average in his shortened final junior campaign for Brampton. Aquino's Fort Wayne teammate Matieu Curadeau recently signed a two-way AHL/IHL contract with Norfolk, and Aquino, who lists Tampa's Martin St. Louis as his favorite NHL player, will be given a long look by the organization whose system lacks an explosive right wing sniper.