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AHL Game Night: 4-12-13 Sound Tigers at Crunch

Clinging to the division lead as the finish line nears.

BRI-3
SYR-2 (OT)

Cedrick Desjardins allowed 3 goals on 34 shots for the overtime loss.

First Period
SYR Sexton, (9) (Richard, Palat), 2:09
BRI Campbell, (6) (Donovan), 7:25
SYR Palat, (13) (Sexton, Taormina), 12:45

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
BRI Niederreiter, (27) (Nilsson, DeFazio), 7:27 (PP)

Overtime
BRI Nelson, (24) (Donovan, Wishart), 2:42

Providence, Springfield, and Binghamton all won tonight, meaning Syracuse lost 1 point worth of ground on the entire field. So, Syracuse is now 4 points back of Providence, 2 back of Springfield, and 2 ahead of Binghamton with all three of those clubs holding a game in hand. Tyler Johnson and Brett Connolly did not play for Syracuse tonight after being sent down to the club today. Their arrival may be critical to the Crunch hanging onto the division title. Rochester is up next tomorrow night.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

KHL Playoff Game Day: 4-12-13

KHL Playoffs (Russia):

Gagarin Cup Finals
Chelyabinsk 0 vs. Dynamo Moscow 1
Dynamo Moscow Leads the Series 3-1
Nikia Nesterov, Chelyabinsk, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Playoff totals: 17 GP, 0-3-3, -3, 6 PIM
Regular season totals (KHL): 35 GP, 0-1-1, +6, 14 PIM
Regular season totals (MHL): 2 GP, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM

Ex-Lightning draft pick Marek Kvapil assisted on the game's only goal in Dynamo Moscow's 1-0, Game Four win over Traktor Chelyabinsk. Nikita Nesterov played 6:27 in the match for Traktor, which now rests on the edge of elimination. Game Five is Monday.

NA Juniors Playoff Game Night: 4-12-13

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

(5)Quebec Remparts 1 @ (8)Rouyn-Noranda Huskies 6
Rouyn-Noranda wins Best-of-7 second round series, 4-1

W Nikita Kucherov, R-N: 3-3-6, +3, 0 PIM, 7 SOG, 0 Hits, *First Star*
Playoff totals: 10 GP, 7-11-18, +10, 10 PIM
Season totals: 33 GP, 29-34-63, +17, 14 PIM
With R-N: 27 GP, 26-27-53, +18, 12 PIM
With Quebec: 6 GP, 3-7-10, -1, 2 PIM

Coming into Game 5, Bolt prospect Nikita Kucherov had three points in his series against the Remparts, but he broke out in a huge way on Friday night. The Russian had a hat trick and three assists for six points and first star honors, helping the Huskies to a 6-1 win. He could have had another goal, but missed on a penalty shot.

Rouyn-Noranda advances to play top-seeded Halifax and top-5 picks Jonathan Druin and Nathan MacKinnon in the league semifinals. Kucherov had the last laugh against Remparts GM and coach, Patrick Roy. The NHL Hall-of-Famer had Kucherov on his roster in the fall but chose to keep two other import players instead of Kucherov. The Lightning’s 2011 second round pick requested to be traded if he wasn’t going to play, and Roy moved him to the Huskies. Like his statue of liberty pose for the Avs against the Red Wings in the playoffs, this probably wasn’t Roy’s best decision.

Connolly, Johnson Returned to Syracuse

The Tampa Bay Lightning have reassigned forwards Brett Connolly and Tyler Johnson to the Syracuse Crunch of the American Hockey League, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced today.

Connolly, 20, has skated in five games with the Lightning this season, tallying one goal on 10 shots. He scored his lone goal of the season while on the power play last night against the Pittsburgh Penguins. The 6-foot-2, 200-pound forward has also appeared in 67 games with the Crunch, registering 27 goals and 57 points to go along with a plus-15 rating and 51 penalty minutes. Connolly ranks second on Syracuse for goals and points and is third for assists with 30. The Campbell River, British Columbia native was originally drafted by the Lightning in the first round, sixth overall, in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft.

Johnson, 22, has played in 14 games with the Lightning this season, collecting three goals and six points to go along with a plus-3 rating and four penalty minutes. The 5-foot-9, 182-pound forward made his NHL debut on March 14 against the New York Islanders and recorded his first career NHL goal and assist on March 16 versus Carolina. Johnson ranks second among all NHL rookies in faceoff percentage at 59.5% (minimum 50 taken). The Spokane, Washington native has also appeared in 59 games with the Crunch, posting 32 goals and 58 points with a plus-28 rating. He ranks first on Syracuse in goals and points and has a team-high 11 power play goals.

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