Roller coaster Crunch back on the uphill slope.
Kristers Gudlevskis allowed 4 goals on 25 shots for the victory. Goal support remains a beautiful thing.
ADK Cousins, (9) (Eddy, Manning), 9:31
ADK Noebels, (3) (Akeson, Lamarche), 17:43
SYR Walker, (5) (Marchessault, Gourde), 7:49 (PP)
ADK Akeson, (21) , 11:54
SYR Paquette, (17) (DiSalvatore, Connolly), 14:46 (PP)
SYR Paquette, (18) (Sustr, Cote), 15:56
ADK Holmstrom, (12) (Delisle, Noebels), 0:59 (PP)
SYR Smith, (6) (Marchessault, Langelier-Parent), 3:35
SYR Langelier-Parent, (2) (Gourde, Witkowski), 9:16
SYR Marchessault, (16) (Connolly, Witkowski), 14:03
Andrej Sustr also returned from injury tonight after missing over a month on the shelf, and he was joined in the lineup by J.P. Cote who has only been healthy enough to see game action in 1 game in the last month. Both defensemen had assists in the game, and both add to the list of reasons to believe this 3 game winning streak the Crunch are on might be sustainable. Also, if Sustr can finish the AHL season strong, he might give the Lightning defensive corps a shot in the arm in the depth department once he goes back up to to Tampa Bay.
The opportunity to make the playoffs is long gone for Syracuse, but they improved to 2 games under .500 with tonight's result. With everything that's happened, if the team can post a record over .500 this year, that's going to be a moral victory at least, and will help lay a foundation for success next season.
Box score from TheAHL.com.
Quebec Major Junior Hockey League
Halifax Mooseheads 11 @ Charlottetown Islanders 3
Mooseheads win best-of-7 first round series, 4-0
C/W Jonathan Drouin, HAL: 2-2-4, +3, 0 PIM, 0 Hits, 5 SOG, 4/14 FO, *First Star*
Playoff totals: 4 GP, 6-7-13, +6, 4 PIM
Season totals: 46 GP, 29-70-108, +49, 43 PIM
2011-2012 Season: 49 GP, 41-64-105, +48, 32 PIM
After a one-day delay due to a storm, Halifax completed their first round sweep of Charlottetown with a dominating 11-3 win. Drouin finished the series with 13 points in four games and three First Star awards. He has a 17-game point streak in which he has 50 points.
Ontario Hockey League
North Bay Battalion 3 @ Niagara IceDogs 5
IceDogs lead best-of-7 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, 3-1
D Dylan Blujus, NB: 0-0-0, -4, 2 PIM
Playoff totals: 4 GP, 1-0-1, -4, 6 PIM
Season totals: 55 GP, 4-26-30, +12, 56 PIM
2012-13 totals: 68 GP, 2-27-29, -8, 57 PIM
Second-seeded North Bay is one loss away from elimination at the hands of seventh-seeded Niagara. Game 5 is Friday in North Bay.
Barrie Colts 1 @ Sudbury Wolves 2
Colts lead best-of-7 Easter Conference Quarterfinals, 3-1
D Jake Dotchin, BAR: 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM
Playoff totals: 4 GP: 2-2-4, +1, 6 PIM
Season totals: 63 GP, 11-25-36, +22, 121 PIM
2012-13 totals: 66 GP, 4-18-22, E, 81 PIM
Dotchin had another point, but the Colts couldn’t sweep out the Wolves in four games. Sudbury lives to play another day – and that day is Friday in Barrie for Game 5.
Kingston Frontenacs 1 @ Peterborough Petes 3
Frontenacs lead best-of-7 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, 3-1
W Henri Ikonen, KGN: 0-0-0, -1, 2 PIM
Playoff totals: 4 GP, 1-4-5, +2, 4 PIM
Season totals: 54 GP, 25-45-70, +17, 49 PIM
2012-13 totals: 61 GP, 22-29-51, +2, 30 PIM
The Petes got 46 saves from Andrew D’Agostini (undrafted) to stave off elimination with a 3-1 win. Game 5 is Friday in Kingston.
Even if it takes all night.
Ben Bishop allowed 2 goals on 27 shots before stopping 9 shooters in a 13 round epic for the Shootout victory. By the end, he and Nabokov were looking like Rocky and Apollo Creed. "No rematch!" cried Nabokov. "Don't want one!" replied Bishop.
0:29 TB Callahan (14), (Gudas, Filppula)
1:33 NYI Strome (5), (Martin, Donovan)
9:17 NYI Donovan (2), (Nielsen, Lee)
5:50 TB Callahan (15), (Brewer)
NYI- Nielsen, Nelson, McDonald, Cizikas
TB- Kostka, Palat, Stamkos, Carle, Salo
2 points the team needed. 2 points they got the hard way. Credit to the Islanders. They're young and undertalented, but they played with energy and structure and came within an eyelash of putting the Lightning in a world of hurt in that Second Period. In the end, the Lightning carried the balance of the play in the First and Third Periods, as well as Overtime. They were the team more deserving of the second point, and they got it, primarily on the strength of some excellent work by their defensive corps. Seriously. Kostka, Carle, and Salo looked like cold-blooded assassins in their attempts. Just, wow.
Points in 10 straight now put the Lightning at 89 points for the campaign. That's 7 shy of the season goal with 9 left to play. With a 9 point lead on the last team out as of this posting, it won't be long now.
Mike Kostka was -1 with 1 shot and 1 blocked shot in 16:59. He absolutely deked Nabokov out of his jock in the shootout and the quick release to roof the backhander off the crossbar and in was just outstanding. The trigger has no heart, and neither did Kostka for old man Nabokov. Win if you can. Survive if Mike Kostka lets you.
KHL Eastern Conference Semifinals
(2)Astana 2 vs. (4)Ufa 1
Ufa Leads the Series 3-2
Andrey Vasilevskiy, Ufa, Loss, 41/43, 2.04 GAA, .953 sv%
Regular season totals: 28 GP, 14-8-5, 3 SO, 2.21 GAA, .923 sv%
Playoff totals: 12 GP, 7-5-0, 0 SO, 2.19 GAA, .930 sv%
Dustin Boyd's goal assisted by former Lightning forward Brandon Bochenski ended up being the game winner in Astana's 2-1 Game Five win over Ufa. Ex-NHLer Ivan Vishnevsky had the lone goal in defeat for Ufa, which was outshot 43-25 in the contest. Ufa may be playing with fire, despite being in a position to eliminate Barys, they have been relying on Vasilevskiy to erase large shot deficits to try to steal the series. Game Six is on Saturday. The winner of the series will face top seed Magnitogorsk in the Eastern Conference Finals.
The mailbag is back with your questions about Lightning Land, present and future.
To have a question answered, use the hashtag, #bpmailbag on Twitter, or respond on our messageboard.
@BoltProspects if you're Yzerman, what type of contracts are you aiming for with Johnson, Panik, and Palat? Panik shorter than the rest?
One-year deals are usually reserved for players who either want to prove something or need to prove something. Panik definitely fits the bill here, though Cooper and Co. love his potential. I could definitely see a 1-2 year restricted free agent deal for him and 2-3 year deals for the others. Johnson is 23 and Palat 22, with 27 being the unrestricted free agent age. Tampa Bay likely wants to have their contracts end a year before they’re eligible for UFA years to protect their rights. Both are definite core players who are part of the future success of the club.