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Wilcox Earns First Pro Shutout, Crunch Beat Americans


By Jeremy Houghtaling

Adam Wilcox gave credit to the players in front of him.

The second-year Crunch goalie registered 25 saves against the Americans for his first professional shutout, as Syracuse beat Rochester, 4-0, at the Onondaga County War Memorial Saturday.

“Give credit to the guys. They battled the whole game,” Wilcox said. “The first two periods it was an easy game. … When there’s three or four minutes left, you got guys like Tanner (Richard) and (Mike) Halmo taking slap shots to the ankles. That shows what type of team we are.
“There’s a bunch of guys selling out for me, and I told them I appreciated it and it means a lot to me.”

The Bolt Prospects Podcast, Episode 79

This week’s “Vladimir Vujtek Edition” of the Bolt Prospects Podcast includes the following topics:

· The No. 79
· Lightning’s identity crisis
· Words I never thought I’d say
· What’s next?
· Six Bolt prospects camping with Team Canada
· Brad Richards: Best Lightning prospect season ever
· #BPMailbag (Forward prospects … Dougie Hamilton talk … What can TB spend for a D? … Coop on hot seat? … Vladdy regressing? … Fancy stats … Can Yzerman sign himself? … Day jobs … D-depth worries … Irritating announcers … DeAngelo DeRegrets? … Possible return pieces for Bishop)

CHL Game Night: 12-3-16

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Halifax Mooseheads 4 @ Baie-Comeau Drakkar 5 (SO)

W Otto Somppi, HAL: 0-1-1, -2, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, 16/28 FO, 1 Hit
Season Totals: 24 GP, 6-13-19, -4, 16 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 59 GP, 13-33-46, -15, 25 PIM

Somppi had an assist as Halifax blew a 4-1 third period lead, but got the extra point in the shootout. Benoit Groulx’s son had two goals and the shootout winner for Halifax.

Ontario Hockey League

Niagara IceDogs 1 @ Saginaw Spirit 5

W/C Christopher Paquette, NIA: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 24 GP, 10-8-18, -5, 12 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 57 GP, 5-11-16, -6, 18 PIM

W Mitchell Stephens, SAG: 1-2-3, +2, 0 PIM, 4 SOG, 8/11 FO
Season Totals: 22 GP, 11-15-26, +13, 14 PIM
2015-2016 Totals: 39 GP, 20-18-38, -3, 14 PIM

Stephens scored the eventual game-winning goal midway through the first period as Saginaw beat visiting Niagara, 5-1.

Erie Otters 3 @ Owen Sound Attack 2

W Taylor Raddysh, Erie: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals: 26 GP, 23-33-56, +34, 15 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 67 GP, 24-49-73, +19, 18 PIM

Raddysh had his second scoreless game of the season out of 26. Hopefully they keep him on the team.

Guelph Storm 3 @ Peterborough Petes 5

D Matt Spencer, PBO: 1-0-1, +1, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Season Totals: 18 GP, 3-7-10, +5, 12 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 60 GP, 5-19-24, -4, 46 PIM

W Jonne Tammela, PBO: Did not play
Season Totals: 2 GP, 1-0-1, +1, 2 PIM
2015-2016 (Finland): 37 GP, 5-8-13, +10, 16 PIM

Matt Spencer had a goal to help Peterborough win their third game in three nights, 5-3 over Guelph, who had beaten London the night before. The Petes were down 2-0 after the first period Saturday.

Western Hockey League

Vancouver Giants 2 @ Kamloops Blazers 5

G Connor Ingram, KAM: Win, 15 saves on 17 shots
Season Totals: 23 GP, 13-9-1-0, 2.22 GAA, .932 sv%, 1 SO
2015-2016 Season: 61 GP, 34-15-5-4, 2.61 GAA, .922 sv%, 4 SO

One game after facing 55 shots, Ingram only saw 17 as Kamloops beat the visiting Giants, 5-2.

Calgary Hitmen 5 @ Moose Jaw Warriors 7

C Brett Howden, MJ: 1-1-2, +1, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 15 GP, 12-11-23, +1, 8 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 68 GP, 24-40-64, -7, 61 PIM

Sharks pick Noah Gregor had two goals and three assists for Moose Jaw in their home win over Calgary.

NCAA Game Night: 12-3-16

No. 4 UMass-Lowell River Hawks 2 @ Connecticut Huskies 2 (OT)

C Ryan Lohin, UML: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 15 GP, 3-7-10, +3, 4 PIM

UConn beat UML, 3-2, on Friday at the home of the River Hawks, but the two teams played to a draw Saturday. UConn tied Saturday’s game with 1:03 left.

Providence Friars 2 @ No. 6 Boston University Terriers 2

D John MacLeod, BU: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 12 GP, 0-4-4, +3, 14 PIM
2015-2016 Totals: 26 GP, 1-1-2, -4, 26 PIM

BU scored twice in the third period to salvage a tie against the Friars.

Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks 7 @ Wisconsin Badgers 4

D Kristian Oldham, UNO: Win, 40 saves on 44 shots
Season Totals: 6 GP, 3-2-1, 2.97 GAA, .901 sv%, 0 SO

Omaha overcame a 4-3 deficit in the third period to win, 7-4. Oldham got the start after watching Friday’s game from the stands. He raised his save percentage over 90%.

No. 10 Ohio State Buckeyes 8 @ No. 11 Minnesota Golden Gophers 3

D Ryan Zuhlsdorf, UMN: 0-0-0, -1, 4 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 13 GP, 2-1-3, +4, 12 PIM

Zuhlsdorf had back-to-back roughing and charging penalties. Minnesota beat OSU on Friday.

*USCHO poll used for rankings

NHL Game Night: 12-3-16 Capitals at Lightning

Lightning snap losing streak with unexpected gem against a longtime tormentor.

WSH-1
TB-2 (SO)

Ben Bishop allowed just 1 goal on 35 shots before stopping 3 of 4 in the penalty shot session for the SO win. Bishop was, apparently, pretty sore about not getting the start in hometown St. Louis and was out to make a point tonight. He played well and made key saves at key junctures, before making the big stops in the Shootout to secure the second point. That's one area I can say Bishop's looked better in this season: he's sewed up that five hole and looks a lot more competent in the penalty shot skills competition.

First Period
NO SCORING

Second Period
12:38 TB Kucherov (13), (Hedman, Drouin)(PP)

Third Period
6:24 Backstrom (7), (Carlson, Johansson)(PP)

Overtime
NO SCORING

Shootout
WSH- Kuznetsov
TB- Point, Boyle

Nikita Kucherov and Bishop were the game's first and third stars.

There were signs of life for the Lightning in the second half of their loss on the road in St. Louis, but coming into tonight against a Washington team that they historically struggle against (in the regular season) there wasn't a lot to hang your hat on with the way the team has been playing lately. I didn't get by Blujus recall, as he hurt his groin earlier this week in Syracuse, but the Lightning did scratch the struggling Nikita Nesterov and commit to giving more minutes to Koekkoek and Witkowski. That was a prerequisite for having any chance from the word jump, and I'm glad Cooper went ahead and made that lineup adjustment. What transpired from there was, by in large, the most focused and impressive three zone effort I think I've seen from the Lightning this season. Through about 35 minutes, they played about as clean and crisp a game as possible. They moved the puck out of their zone crisply and cleanly and contested every inch of the ice against a very quality opponent. Gone were the turnovers and odd man rushes that have marred so much of the team's games over the last two weeks. In their place was a singular resolve to win a hockey game that showed up in every single man up and down that bench. They got a little sloppier on the breakouts after Kucherov's power play goal, and didn't stay out of the box as much as they needed to in the Third Period, where Backstrom tied the game. But, in the end, they deserved the two points and they finally got them with the heroics of Point, Boyle, and Bishop in the Shootout.

Brayden Point had 1 hit in 17:13. It doesn't show up in the scoresheet, but I thought he had an incredibly poised effort tonight with the puck for the Lightning. Just made some really good decisions that allowed the Lightning to either continue possession or stay away from trouble. He's been doing it a lot this season, but tonight he did it against one of the higher quality opponents you'll see.

Luke Witkowski had 3 shots, 2 hits, and 2 blocked shots in 11:10. He played well tonight. He doesn't bring you the "upside" that Nesterov has, but there's something to be said of a lower pair defenseman who plays a simple game and doesn't make stupid decisions that get you in trouble. Nolan Pratt has his name on the Stanley Cup and all the love in the world from Lightning fans for just that reason.

Slater Koekkoek had 1 shot and 2 hits in 15:04. Just keep feeding him minutes. He can take it athletically. He just needs the experience. Give. It. To. Him. The Lightning will not regret it if they do.

Joel Vermin had 1 shot and 3 hits in 15:43. He played another dynamite game as evidenced by Cooper putting Vermin out for the Overtime session. He looks like a player who, if he keeps it up, has the potential to stick.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 12-3-16 Americans at Crunch

Syracuse puts on a clinic.

RCH-0
SYR-4

Adam Wilcox stopped all 25 shots he faced for the win and his first professional shutout.

First Period
4:17 SYR Morin (3), (Taormina, Richard)(PP)

Second Period
5:32 SYR Condra (4), (Dotchin, Taormina)
10:02 SYR Erne (4), (Taormina, Condra)

Third Period
14:39 SYR Erne (5), (Gourde, Condra)(EN)

Wilcox, Matt Taormina, and Erik Condra were the game's three stars.

Adam Erne snapped a 7 game goal drought with a pair of markers tonight, as well.

A coach's dream is when his team builds a 3-0 lead through 40 minutes, puts it on lockdown in the Third Period, and then adds an EN goal just to rub salt in the wound. That's how you draw it up.

With the win, at this moment, Syracuse finally has overtaken Albany for first place in the North Division and sits 4 points back of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and Bridgeport for tops in the Eastern Conference, with games in hand on each of those teams (2 in Bridgeport's case).

Box score from TheAHL.com.

Liiga Game Day: 12-3-16

SaiPa 2 vs. Assat 3 (OT)
Saku Salminen, SaiPa, DNP
Season totals: 20 GP, 2-2-4, -5, 39 PIM

Undrafted 24 year old forward Simon Suoranta had the winning goal for Assat in their 3-2 OT victory over SaiPa.

KHL Game Day: 12-3-16

Khabarovsk 1 vs. St. Petersburg 2
Nikita Gusev, St. Petersburg, 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season totals: 35 GP, 15-30-45, +27, 6 PIM

Nikita Gusev was scoreless in 12:31 of ice time as SKA eked out a 2-1 win over Amur Khabarovsk. Ex-Canucks pick Sergei Shirokov had both goals in the win for SKA.

NCAA Game Night: 12-2-16

Connecticut Huskies 3 @ No. 4 UMass-Lowell River Hawks 2

C Ryan Lohin, UML: 0-1-1, +1, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals: 14 GP, 3-7-10, +3, 4 PIM

Blues first rounder Tage Thompson had his ninth and 10th goals, helping unranked UConn to an upset win over UMass-Lowell. Ryan Lohin had an assist for the River Hawks.

No. 6 Boston University Terriers 2 @ Providence Friars 1

D John MacLeod, BU: 0-0-0, -1, 2 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 11 GP, 0-4-4, +4, 14 PIM
2015-2016 Totals: 26 GP, 1-1-2, -4, 26 PIM

Jake Oettinger (2017) stopped 38 shots to lead BU to a win over the Friars. Providence outshot BU, 39-18.

Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks 3 @ Wisconsin Badgers 3 (OT)

D Kristian Oldham, UNO: Did not dress
Season Totals: 5 GP, 2-2-1, 2.75 GAA, .898 sv%, 0 SO

Oldham wasn’t dressed for Friday’s game in Wisconsin. The Badgers put 50 shots on the Omaha net, outshooting the Mavs, 50-30. Wisconsin won the entertainment-only shootout, 2-0.

No. 10 Ohio State Buckeyes 3 @ No. 11 Minnesota Golden Gophers 5

D Ryan Zuhlsdorf, UMN: 0-0-0, +2, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals: 12 GP, 2-1-3, +4, 8 PIM

Minnesota had a 4-1 lead and held on against the visiting Buckeyes. Sophomores Leon Bristedt (undrafted) and Tyler Sheehy (undrafted) each had two goals for the Gophers.

*USCHO poll used for rankings

CHL Game Night: 12-2-16

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Halifax Mooseheads 4 @ Chicoutimi Sagueneens 1

W Otto Somppi, HAL: 0-1-1, +1, 2 PIM, 2 SOG, 10/20 FO, 1 Hit
Season Totals: 23 GP, 6-12-18, -2, 16 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 59 GP, 13-33-46, -15, 25 PIM

Somppi assisted on Connor Moynihan’s 16th goal of the season to give Halifax a 1-0 lead.

Quebec Remparts 3 @ Shawinigan Cataractes 2

W Dennis Yan, SHAW: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 9 SOG, 0 Hits
Season Totals: 24 GP, 16-10-26, +3, 30 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 62 GP, 32-37-69, +8, 86 PIM

Yan led Shawinigan in shots Friday with nine.

Ontario Hockey League

Oshawa Generals 2 @ Hamilton Bulldogs 1

C Anthony Cirelli, OSH: 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG, 14/26 FO
Season Totals: 24 GP, 13-20-33, +18, 8 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 62 GP, 21-38-59, -15 27 PIM

Cirelli had the primary assist on the game-winning goal scored four minutes into the second period.

Barrie Colts 3 @ Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 4 (OT)

W Boris Katchouk, SSM: 0-0-0, E, 2 PIM, 2 SOG
Season: 26 GP, 13-11-24, +6, 15 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 63 GP, 24-27-51, +7, 61 PIM

Katchouk had his eight-game point streak snapped, though the Soo ended up with a win. Bruins first rounder Zach Senyshyn had four goals for the Greyhounds to raise his season total to 14.

Niagara IceDogs 0 @ Flint Firebirds 4

W/C Christopher Paquette, NIA: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals: 23 GP, 10-8-18, -4, 12 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 57 GP, 5-11-16, -6, 18 PIM

Paquette was back in the IceDogs lineup after missing Sunday. Connor Hicks (undrafted) made 25 saves for the Flint shutout.

Erie Otters 1 @ Guelph Storm 3

W Taylor Raddysh, Erie: 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM, 4 SOG
Season Totals: 25 GP, 23-33-56, +34, 15 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 67 GP, 24-49-73, +19, 18 PIM

Raddysh was named the OHL Co-player of the Month earlier this week, sharing the award with linemate Alex DeBrincat. Raddysh had an assist Friday as the high-powered Otters were shut down by last-place Guelph. Former London OHL first rounder Liam Herbst (undrafted) had 35 saves for the Storm.

Peterborough Petes 5 @ Mississauga Steelheads 3

D Matt Spencer, PBO: 0-0-0, +2, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Season Totals: 17 GP, 2-7-9, +4, 12 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 60 GP, 5-19-24, -4, 46 PIM

W Jonne Tammela, PBO: Did not play
Season Totals: 2 GP, 1-0-1, +1, 2 PIM
2015-2016 (Finland): 37 GP, 5-8-13, +10, 16 PIM

The Petes beat the Steelheads by two goals for the second night in a row.

Saginaw Spirit 2 @ Sarnia Sting 3 (SO)

W Mitchell Stephens, SAG: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 7 SOG, 16/28 FO
Season Totals: 21 GP, 10-13-23, +11, 14 PIM
2015-2016 Totals: 39 GP, 20-18-38, -3, 14 PIM

Stephens led the Spirit in shots Friday. He did not convert his shootout attempt.

Western Hockey League

Saskatoon Blades 1 @ Edmonton Oil Kings 4

D Libor Hajek, SAS: 0-0-0, -2, 2 PIM
Season Totals: 27 GP: 0-10-10, -9, 41 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 69 GP, 3-23-26, -19, 76 PIM

Saskatoon has lost seven of their last eight games. Hajek is scoreless in his last five games.

Moose Jaw Warriors 3 @ Prince Albert Raiders 5

C Brett Howden, MJ: 0-0-0, -3, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 14 GP, 11-9-20, E, 8 PIM
2015-2016 Season: 68 GP, 24-40-64, -7, 61 PIM

Howden had three points in each of his first two games after returning from injury, but was scoreless and minus-3 Friday.

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