Kvapil, Marek

Atherton Up, Kvapil Down

The Springfield Falcons have announced the promotion of defenseman PJ Atherton from Johnstown of the ECHL. In addition, the Falcons demoted right winger Marek Kvapil to Johnstown. Kvapil had been considered a potential NHL callup heading into the 2006-2007 season, but a disasterous year in the AHL has seen Kvapil busted down to Springfield's checking lines. After failing to score in some weeks, Kvapil's demotion is the final thud in an unremarkable campaign.

AHL Game Night 3/9: Pirates at Falcons

Gerald Coleman gets some small measure of revenge.

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Karri Ramo allowed 4 goals on 34 shots in the loss. Daniel Corso and PJ Atherton had the Falcons goals. Individual assists belonged to Matt Smaby, Norm Milley, Dan Cavanaugh and Justin Keller. Tonight's game turned on a 5 minute high sticking penalty in the second period on Marek Kvapil which Portland cashed in on twice to assume a lead they never relenquished the rest of the way.

First Period
SPR Corso, (15) (Smaby, Milley), 6:53 (PP)

Second Period
POR Carter, (11) (Salcido, Wilson), 7:06 (PP)
POR Salcido, (6) (Carter, Wilson), 8:52 (PP)
POR Keith, (10) (Hartigan, Weinrich), 9:45 (PP)

Third Period
SPR Atherton, (2) (Cavanaugh, Keller), 7:37
POR Hartigan, (25) , 13:16

Game sheet from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night 2/24: Bruins at Falcons

Total third period implosion.

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Karri Ramo allowed 4 goals on 19 shots before giving way to Jonathan Boutin who fared even worse allowing 2 goals on 5 shots. Justin Keller and Norm Milley had Springfield's goals with assists belonging to Marek Kvapil, Jay Rosehill and Daniel Corso. Unfortunately, after hanging around for the first 40 minutes of the game, Springfield self destructed and allowed 4 goals in the final frame. The Falcons also had an opportunity to take a 2-0 lead early in the game on a David Spina penalty shot, but Spina failed to score and a Bruins goal in the final minutes of the first evened the game up.

Positives: with Kyle Wanvig up in Tampa on recall, Kvapil was moved back up to the second line with Keller and Spina and the three responded. Kvapil had the assist and 2 shots on goal, Spina had 4 shots and Keller had a team high 5 shots on goal. Hopefully the youngsters can keep it up. Remember, a couple of years ago Paul Ranger and Evgeny Artyukhin really came on at the end of the year (especially Ranger in the last dozen games) and it catapulted them into the NHL early the next year. Even though Springfield's playoff chances are slim and none, these young players still have a lot of developmental time left to capitalize on and once the college and junior team seasons start to end there will be an opportunity for the Lightning to identify some players to sign to ATO contracts with a view toward shaping next year's roster. There's still a lot to play for here.

First Period
SPR Keller, (10) (Kvapil, Rosehill), 2:10
PRO Rosa, (2) (Karsums, Lashoff), 19:21

Second Period
PRO Trevelyan, (19) (Hoggan, Zinger), 6:16

Third Period
PRO Trevelyan, (20) (Walter), 2:23
PRO Rosa, (3) (Talbot, Zinger), 7:07
SPR Milley, (19) (Corso), 7:30
PRO Karsums, (13) (Glenn, Lashoff), 14:32 (PP)
PRO Curry, (4) (Pelletier), 15:12 (PP)

Game sheet from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night 2/21: N. Admirals at Falcons

Good effort. They just can't score goals to save their lives.

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Karri Ramo stopped 31 of 33 shots faced in the loss. David Spina had the only Falcons goal (shorthanded) off assists from Dan Cavanaugh and Matt Smaby. At this point of the season, many of these non-contract players are playing for jobs and Spina, in his last 24 games, has 6 goals and 18 points. In my opinion, he's a guy that the organization needs to keep around on an AHL contract next season. Smaby, quietly, has posted 4 assists over the last 5 games. Ramo was named second star of the game.

Springfield outshot the Admirals 35 to 33 in the game. That's no small feat considering that the Admirals hold the best record in the Eastern Conference. It seems clear that the Falcons have picked up their play of late. What they really need now is one of the youngsters like Justin Keller or Marek Kvapil to start putting the puck in the net. Each were held to just 1 shot on goal tonight.

First Period
NOR Bolland, (11) (Parenteau, Hendry), 4:34
SPR Spina, (8) (Cavanaugh, Smaby), 19:44 (SH)

Second Period
NOR Richmond, (10) (Versteeg, Corazzini), 2:59 (PP)

Third Period
NO SCORING

Game sheet from TheAHL.com.

Springfield Notes: Boutin Back, Spina Moved to Center

According to today's Springfield Republican:

Jonathan Boutin has returned from injury (which was a concussion) and the team will carry three goaltenders into the weekend: Boutin, Karri Ramo, and Gerald Coleman. The paper says that a roster move could be made on Monday. Of interest here is Tampa Bay GM Jay Feaster telling the Tampa papers today that he doesn't want to deal off a player from the NHL roster, but instead - if a deal is to be made - he would use a prospect/pick. Tampa currently has three AHL-caliber goaltenders. Hmmmm…..

Also, Falcons Coach Steve Stirling plans to permanently move David Spina to center. Stirling likes the way Spina and Kyle Wanvig work with each other and the physical presence of Brandon Elliott on that line. The Republican points out Spina assisted on all three of Wanvig’s goals against Hartford the other night.

Probable top-3 lines entering the weekend:

Eric Healey – Daniel Corso – Norm Milley
Kyle Wanvig – David Spina – Brandon Elliott
Marek Kvapil – Dan Cavanaugh – Justin Keller

ECHL Game Day 2/11: Royals at Chiefs

No matter what the fate of the Chiefs is off the ice and in the financial ledger, Johnstown is absolutely kicking some tail right now.

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Ryan Munce stopped 24 of 26 shots faced for the win, his first in a Chiefs jersey. Johnstown's 5 goal third period was ignited by a thermonuclear 2 goal 2 assist effort by Adam Henrich, who is apparently POed that I wrote him off earlier this week. Memo to self: write off Marek Kvapil next week. Johnstown's other goals came from Maxime Boisclair, Gus Katsuras and Randy Rowe. Katsuras' goal was an auspicious reintroduction to the team after missing two months due to injury. Have mercy, the Chiefs are reloading for the stretch run. Bryan Nathe, Ryan Gibbons, Geoff Waugh, Grant Jacobsen, John Adams and Andrew Martens added individual helpers. Don't look now, but big Ryan Gibbons is riding a four game scoring streak. Henrich, Katsuras and Rowe were named the game's three stars.

Johnstown moves to within 1 point of 4th place Toledo as they burn a trail back into the playoff hunt.

First Period
REA Smith, (17) (Hogeboom, Zappala), 0:52

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
JHN Boisclair, (13) (Henrich, Martens), 4:22 (PP)
JHN Katsuras, (4) (Nathe, Jacobsen), 8:12
REA Hogeboom, (27) (Germain, Smith), 12:08 (SH)
JHN Rowe, (14) (Waugh, Henrich), 13:15
JHN Henrich, (10) (Adams, Gibbons), 15:01
JHN Henrich, (11) , 19:25 (EN)

Game sheet from ECHL.com.

AHL Game Night 2/11: Falcons at Monarchs

That's an unfortunate outcome to a very good effort.

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Gerald Coleman stopped 22 of 25 shots faced for his first AHL loss of the season. Springfield got goals from Marek Kvapil and Norm Milley with individual assists belonging to Doug Andress and Andy Rogers. In a dramatic departure from many recent efforts by the Falcons, Springfield dominated the shot count in outshooting Manchester 39-25.

First Period
MCH Nolan, (1) (Zeiler, Moulson), 14:56

Second Period
SPR Kvapil, (11) (Andress), 8:04
SPR Milley, (18) (Rogers), 13:37

Third Period
MCH Dallman, (3) (Moulson, Zeiler), 0:36
MCH Dallman, (4) (Clarke, Hoffman), 8:01

Game sheet from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Day 2/4: Falcons at Senators

It's a shame the Falcons couldn't quite get that second point to salvage more out of this weekend.

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BNG-3 (SO)

Karri Ramo stopped 43 of 45 shots faced in the loss. Sylvain Dufresne had two assists in the game with Springfield's goals coming from Marek Kvapil and Eric Healey. Adam Henrich and Norm Milley added individual assists. Justin Keller failed to capitalize on a 2nd period penalty shot opportunity and former Falcon Ryan Vesce scored twice in the shootout for Binghampton who emerged triumphant 2-1 in the penalty shots in six frames. Ramo and Healey were named first and third stars respectively.

First Period
BNG David, (2) (Pecker), 6:49

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
BNG Rawlyk, (1) (Cook, Vesce), 4:50 (PP)
SPR Kvapil, (10) (Henrich, Dufresne), 7:00 (PP)
SPR Healey, (22) (Dufresne, Milley), 14:26

Overtime
NO SCORING

Shootout
SPR- Wanvig
BNG- Vesce (2)

Game sheet from TheAHL.com.

Keller to Return This Weekend

In an interview for the Springfield Falcons' website, FalconsAHL.com, Springfield Head Coach Steve Stirling has announced that forward Justin Keller will return this weekend after missing over a month with a high ankle sprain. Before his injury, Keller had been playing well on a line with fellow Lightning prospects Blair Jones and Marek Kvapil and the young left winger's return could offer a shot in the arm to the team's anemic offensive attack. In 29 game this season Keller has 9 goals and 17 points with 10 penalty minutes and a -7 rating.

AHL Game Day 1/21: Falcons at Wolf Pack

If Ramo got shot at any more in this game, someone would've owed him a medal.

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Karri Ramo stopped 53 of 55 shots faced in the loss as the Falcons were outshot 55-22 including 19-5 in the decisive final period. For his Herculean efforts, Ramo was named second star of the game. The lone Falcons goal came on the power play from Doug O'Brien off assists from Marek Kvapil and Blair Jones. As unholy as the shot totals were in the game, they were just one savvy play from the veteran line away from stealing a point which isn't bad for their third game in three nights.

The loss puts the Falcons 2 points back behind the final playoff spot in the Atlantic Division at 22-22-1. The Falcons will face division leading Manchester on Wednesday and a struggling Philadelphia club on Saturday. From here on out every point matters.

First Period
SPR O'Brien, (4) (Kvapil, Jones), 10:46 (PP)
HFD Callahan, (26) (Immonen), 15:19

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
HFD Baranka, (3) (Dawes, Degon), 6:55 (PP)

Game sheet from TheAHL.com.

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