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AHL Game Night: 12-20-15 Crunch at Bears

Crunch fritter away a 3 goal lead to fall in OT.

SYR-4
HER-5 (OT)

Adam Wilcox allowed 5 goals on 44 shots for the OT loss. Hard to be mad at the goaltender when the team gets outshot 44-16.

First Period
SYR McGinn, (7) (Erne, Tambellini), 8:06 (PP)
SYR Erne, (2) (Paradis, Taormina), 10:45 (PP)
SYR McGinn, (8) (DeAngelo, Peca), 13:21 (PP)

Second Period
HER Stanton, (2) (Camper, Walker), 13:39
HER Stephenson, (3) (Barber, Bowey), 14:42

Third Period
SYR Tambellini, (11) (Paradis), 2:25 (SH)
HER Collins, (4) (Moore, Walker), 9:00
HER Djoos, (2) (Stephenson, Gazley), 11:22

Overtime
HER Collins, (5) (Stephenson), 0:25

Tye McGinn was the game's third star.

For much of the night, it looked like the Crunch were going to cap a pretty successful weekend with a win. Considering the team was having to play two defensemen at forward because of the injuries up top in Tampa Bay, maybe getting 3 of the possible 6 points out of the set is as successful as can be expected.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 12-19-15 Penguins at Crunch

Blanked.

WBS-3
SYR-0

Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 3 goals on 23 shots for the loss.

First Period
WBS Kostopoulos, (7) (Sundqvist, Andersen), 6:20

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
WBS O'Neill, (4) (Mouillierat, Rust), 3:33
WBS Kuhnhackl, (6) (Simon), 5:19

Matthew Peca was the game's third star.

Syracuse actually outshot Wilke-Barre/Scranton 30-23 in the contest, but couldn't find the scoresheet.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

Juniors Game Night: 12-19-15

Ontario Hockey League

Windsor Spitfires 6 @ Saginaw Spirit 3

W Cristiano DiGiacinto, WSR: 1-1-2, +2, 2 PIM, 2 SOG
Season totals: 29 GP, 13-16-29, +18, 48 PIM
2014-15 totals: 63 GP, 21-24-45, -16, 100 PIM

Windsor’s Brendan Lemieux (Sabres), son of former NHLer Claude Lemieux, had a hat trick and DiGiacinto scored his 13th goal of the season as Windsor won in Saginaw, 6-3.

Western Hockey League

Vancouver Giants 2 @ Everett Silvertips 3 (OT)

D Ben Thomas, VAN: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM
Season totals: 38 GP, 3-12-15, -16, 21 PIM
With Vancouver: 24 GP, 3-9-12, -6, 11 PIM
With Calgary: 14 GP, 0-3-3, -10, 10 PIM
2014-15 totals: 60 GP, 7-24-31, +16, 28 PIM

Vancouver responded to an overtime loss to Everett on Friday with a close win in their barn on Saturday.

NOTES: Brayden Point had a goal and an assist before leaving Canada’s pre-WJC game with an injury. Point was playing for the first time since hurting his shoulder over a month ago. He was kept out of the third period for precautionary reasons. Mitchell Stephens was scoreless in Canada’s 6-1 win over Belarus. Dominik Masin (Czech Republic) and Jonne Tammela (Finland) are also in the tournament. Masin is the Czech’s captain.

The QMJHL is now off until December 28.

United States Hockey League

While both Sioux City (Ryan Zuhlsdorf) and Omaha (Kris Oldham) were in action Saturday, neither Lightning prospect dressed as they are returning from the World Junior A Challenge in Ontario. Both won a Bronze medal with Team USA.

Crunch Blanked By Penguins


By Jeremy Houghtaling

Despite significantly outshooting the Penguins in the first period, the Crunch entered the first intermission trailing by a goal.

Syracuse struggled to solve Wilkes-Barre/Scranton goalie Brian Foster, who finished with 30 saves in the Penguins’ 3-0 win over the Crunch at the Onondaga County War Memorial Saturday.

“I thought we had some great opportunities in the first,” said Crunch head coach Rob Zettler. “We had (Jeff) Tambellini all alone in front in the second. I thought their goalie played extroidinarily well … He kept them in the game in the first period, and then we made some mistakes in the third that cost us.”

Juniors Game Night: 12-18-15

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Halifax Mooseheads 1 @ Saint John Sea Dogs 3

W Bokondji Imama, SJ: Did not play
Season totals: 28 GP, 4-9-13, -1, 50 PIM
2013-2014 Season: 59 GP, 13-15-28, +2, 137 PIM

W Mathieu Joseph, SJ: 0-1-1, +2, 0 PIM, 3 SOG, 1 Hit
Season totals: 31 GP, 16-17-33, +12, 35 PIM
2013-2014 Season: 59 GP, 21-21-42, +18, 46 PIM

Former Lightning camper Eric Brassard made 44 saves for Halifax, but Saint John beat him three times to take a 3-1 win. Brassard was named first star. Joseph’s assist was shorthanded. Boko Imama is currently serving a 15-game suspension stemming from an incident in the last game between the Mooseheads and Sea Dogs.

Shawinigan Cataractes 4 @ Gatineau Olympiques 5

W Dennis Yan, SHAW: Did not play
Season totals: 28 GP, 22-22-44, +1, 33 PIM
2014-2015 Season: 59 GP, 33-31-64, +23, 71 PIM

Dennis Yan was not in the lineup Friday. He is riding a 3-game scoreless streak.

Ontario Hockey League

Flint Firebirds 4 @ Oshawa Generals 1

C Anthony Cirelli, OSH: 0-0-0, -2, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, 17/23 FO
Season totals: 29 GP, 9-16-25, -11, 19 PIM
2014-15 totals: 68 GP, 13-23-36, +34, 22 PIM

Nicholas Caamano (2016) had two goals for Flint Friday.

Peterborough Petes 4 @ Ottawa 67’s 5

D Matt Spencer, PBO: 0-1-1, +2, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season totals: 34 GP, 3-13-16, E, 29 PIM
2014-15 totals: 67 GP, 6-24-30, -15, 64 PIM

Peterborough took a 2-1 lead early in the second period, then allowed four goals before the next intermission. They scored two quick goals in the third but couldn’t complete the comeback.

Western Hockey League

Everett Silvertips 3 @ Vancouver Giants 2 (OT)

D Ben Thomas, VAN: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM
Season totals: 37 GP, 3-12-15, -16, 21 PIM
With Vancouver: 23 GP, 3-9-12, -6, 11 PIM
With Calgary: 14 GP, 0-3-3, -10, 10 PIM
2014-15 totals: 60 GP, 7-24-31, +16, 28 PIM

Radko Gudas’ former team outshot Vancouver, 37-20, on their way to a 3-2 overtime win. Undrafted overager Carson Stadnyk had the overtime winner for the Tips.

World Junior A Challenge

Team USA won the bronze medal Friday, defeating Canada East, 7-1. Kris Oldham (pictured) got the start for USA after finishing the semifinals vs Russia. He made 17 saves against Canada East. Ryan Zuhlsdorf was scoreless. Oldham finished the tournament 1-2 with a 2.59 GAA and .895 save percentage. Zuhlsdorf had two assists in five games.

NOTES: Brayden Point is practicing at first line center and Mitchell Stephens is on the fourth line as Canada prepares for this month’s World Junior Championship in Finland. Dominik Masin (Czech Republic) and Jonne Tammela (Finland) are also in the tournament. Masin is the Czech’s captain.

The QMJHL is now off until December 28. The Lightning's NCAA prospects are on Christmas break.

Vasilevskiy, Power Play Lead Crunch Over Senators


By Jeremy Houghtaling

With many of Syracuse’s leading scorers called up, the power play still found ways to convert.

The Crunch scored twice with the man-advantage and Andrei Vasilevskiy made 27 saves for the shutout, as Syracuse blanked the Binghamton Senators, 4-0, to snap a five-game losing skid at the Onondaga County War Memorial Friday.

“They kept it simple. I know that’s cliche but it’s true,” said Crunch head coach Rob Zettler. “They get it to the point and they shoot the thing. The way we’re setting up is good and we’re helping each other on the power play. It’s not necessarily about making the plays, but it’s about getting the recoveries, getting the puck back, and getting the puck in. It seems to be working for us right now.”

AHL Game Night: 12-18-15 Senators at Crunch

Vasiy says, "LET THERE BE KITTENS!"

BNG-0
SYR-4

Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped all 27 shots he faced for the shutout victory.

First Period
SYR Darcy, (2) (DeAngelo, Peca), 14:44 (PP)

Second Period
SYR Walcott, (1) (Blujus, Broll), 7:46

Third Period
SYR Blujus, (2) (Koekkoek, Peca), 2:38 (PP)
SYR McGinn, (6) (DeAngelo, Blujus), 18:11

Vasilevskiy, Cameron Darcy, and Dylan Blujus were the game's three stars. Darcy's suddenly finding the scoresheet and giving the Crunch some much needed offensive punch.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

NHL Game Night: 12-18-15 Lightning at Capitals

Third Period meltdown tarnishes solid Lightning effort.

TB-3
WSH-5

Ben Bishop allowed 4 goals on 22 shots for the loss. Situational saves matter. The Oshie goal off the wing high short side cannot be allowed in that situation. It's got to be a higher caliber scoring chance that beats you there. That, among other things, opened the door to the meltdown that happened.

First Period
8:18 TB Killorn (5), (Marchessault, Coburn)

Second Period
6:54 TB Sustr (1), (Kucherov)
9:04 TB Stamkos (12), (Hedman, Stralman)
13:49 WSH Ovechkin (15), (Oshie, Carlson)(PP)

Third Period
7:54 WSH Oshie (11), (unassisted)
10:02 WSH Ovechkin (16), (Chimera, Williams)(PP)
14:16 WSH Johansson (6), (Oshie, Ovechkin)(PP)
19:35 WSH Oshie (12), (Backstrom, Ovechkin)(EN)

That's a tough one. It's not that the Lightning lost to a really good team like the Capitals, it's that they looked like they were going to post a watershed victory only to see it implode right before their eyes. Add it to the list of similar losses the Lightning have suffered this season.

Part of the Lightning's undoing tonight has to be attributed to the officials. The refs giftwrapped a pair of highly questionable phantom calls on a slash to Stamkos off a faceoff that ended up cutting the Lightning lead to 3-1 and a ticky tack interference call at the bench on Hedman that allowed Washington to tie the game. Take that phantom slash on Stamkos away, and the Lightning likely take a 3-0 game into the locker room and the outcome is pretty much in the bag. Mind you, the PK has to do better than go 1-for-4, but I'm more than a little bitter about the night the zebras had.

There's plenty of silver linings from the night, the biggest of which was Stamkos snapping out of his goal scoring slump. It's amazing how he looked like he was shot out of a cannon in the Third Period with that weight lifted from his shoulders. It wouldn't be all that surprising if he went on a tear over the coming few weeks. But, you know, that's not going to take the sour taste out of this one.

Mike Angelidis had 3 hits in 7:57. Hard working night on the fourth line.

Jonathan Marchessault had a helper and was +1 with 2 shots in 14:25. He had a strong game, including hitting a post that was nearly a key goal in the Third Period that might've allowed the Lightning to stave off the coming disaster.

Yanni Gourde had 2 hits in 7:43.

Nikita Nesterov was +1 with 1 shot and 2 hits in 14:06. I thought he played one of his better games in a while tonight.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

Juniors Game Night: 12-17-15

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

Cape Breton Screaming Eagles 4 @ Saint John Sea Dogs 2

W Bokondji Imama, SJ: Did not play
Season totals: 28 GP, 4-9-13, -1, 50 PIM
2013-2014 Season: 59 GP, 13-15-28, +2, 137 PIM

W Mathieu Joseph, SJ: 1-1-2, -2, 0 PIM, 6 SOG, 2 Hits, *Second Star*
Season totals: 30 GP, 16-16-32, +10, 35 PIM
2013-2014 Season: 59 GP, 21-21-42, +18, 46 PIM

Mathieu Joseph had another 2-point night, but his third period points were not enough for the team to come back from a 4-0 deficit. Boko Imama is currently serving a 15-game suspension.

Ontario Hockey League

Saginaw Spirit 6 @ Windsor Spitfires 7 (OT)

W Mitchell Stephens, SAG: Did not play (WJC)
Season totals: 9 GP, 7-4-11, +3, 6 PIM
2014-15 totals: 62 GP, 22-26-48, -17, 44 PIM

W Cristiano DiGiacinto, WSR: 0-1-1, E, 4 PIM, 0 SOG
Season totals: 28 GP, 12-15-27, +16, 46 PIM
2014-15 totals: 63 GP, 21-24-45, -16, 100 PIM

Windsor’s Brendan Lemieux (Sabres), son of former NHLer Claude Lemieux, scored his 15th goal of the season in the extra session to give Windsor the win. Both of DiGiacinto’s penalties were for goaltender interference.

Owen Sound Attack 5 @ Peterborough Petes 4 (SO)

D Dominik Masin, PBO: Did not play (WJC)
Season totals: 29 GP, 3-10-13, +20, 28 PIM
2014-15 totals: 48 GP, 7-19-26, -13, 68 PIM

D Matt Spencer, PBO: 0-0-0, +1, 2 PIM, 0 SOG
Season totals: 33 GP, 3-12-15, +2, 29 PIM
2014-15 totals: 67 GP, 6-24-30, -15, 64 PIM

The Petes fared better against Owen Sound than their last game – a 7-0 loss – but the Attack got the better of them in the shootout. Owen Sound had a 3-0 lead in the game before Peterborough scored the game’s next four goals. The shootout went eight rounds before Owen Sound won it, 2-1. Matthew Mancina (undrafted) made 47 saves for the Petes.

World Junior A Challenge

Team USA fell to Russia, 7-4, Thursday in the semifinals of the World Junior A Challenge. Ryan Zuhlsdorf, who wore an alternate captain’s A for the Americans, had an assist. It looked on the broadcast like he was playing on the second defensive pair. He played a confident, responsible game and made some nice passes to send forwards into the offensive zone. He joined the rush at one point and had a weak-side wrist shot that hit the goaltender’s shoulder. Kris Oldham (pictured) didn’t start for USA, but came in to start the third period. USA’s starter allowed goals on the first three shots he faced. Oldham was beaten by a screened wrist shot from the center point that found its way through traffic, then later on a 2 on 1 where the puck carrier slid a pass around a sliding defender. It was one-touched in on the backhand into the far side of the net. There wasn’t much Oldham could do on that. He responded with 2-3 big saves in the mid-third period, including one on a breakaway by German Rubtsov, who had two goals in the game and was dangerous all night. The 6-1 forward is projected to be a late first or second round pick in this summer’s draft. Oldham took the loss, but is likely to get the start in the Bronze Medal Game Friday.

NOTES: Brayden Point is practicing at first line center and Mitchell Stephens is on the fourth line as Canada prepares for this month’s World Junior Championship in Finland. Dominik Masin (Czech Republic) and Jonne Tammela (Finland) are also in the tournament. Masin is the Czech’s captain.

Juniors Game Night: 12-16-15

Western Hockey League

Victoria Royals 3 @ Vancouver Giants 4

D Ben Thomas, VAN: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM
Season totals: 36 GP, 3-12-15, -15, 21 PIM
With Vancouver: 22 GP, 3-9-12, -5, 11 PIM
With Calgary: 14 GP, 0-3-3, -10, 10 PIM
2014-15 totals: 60 GP, 7-24-31, +16, 28 PIM

Thomas’ 3-game point streak was snapped Wednesday in Vancouver’s win over Victoria. Thomas’ career-high for points in consecutive games is four, set last season with Calgary.

World Junior A Challenge

Ryan Zuhlsdorf, Kris Oldham and Team USA advanced to the semifnals Wednesday with a 7-1 win over Switzerland. Zuhlsdorf was scoreless and Oldham sat backup. USA will play Russia Thursday.

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