FALCONS WIN 5-4 IN A SHOOTOUT
By: Mike Hopey
March 13, 2010 - It took 65 minutes and six rounds of a shootout, but Rob Hisey scored the game winner that lifted the Springfield Falcons over the Hershey Bears on Saturday night. Chad Wiseman scored two power-play goals and picked up an assist for the Falcons and Charles Linglet added a goal and two assists in the 5-4 win in front of 5,162 fans at the MassMutual Center.
“We won the special team battle and that’s what you have to do,” said head coach Rob Daum. “You’re never going to keep them off for the whole night and we found a way to get it done.”
The Falcons penalty kill kept the Bears to 1-for-5 on the man advantage. The Bears only power-play goal came in the second period with Andrew Gordon’s 31st goal of the season. Ryan MacMurchy was serving a five-minute major for boarding. Early in the second, MacMurchy hit Dylan Yeo sending him to the ice motionless. A stretcher was brought onto the ice but Yeo was able to skate off with the help of his teammates.
The Falcons held the lead at 4-3 going into the third period after Keith Aucoin scored his 32nd in the final minutes of the second period. The Falcons sat back a bit in the period but they withstood the rest of Hershey’s offensive surges. Steve Pinizzotto’s short-handed goal seven minutes into the period tied the game and sent the game into overtime.
The overtime period began with unusual circumstances as the teams skated three on three. Colton Fretter was called for unsportsmanlike conduct at the conclusion of regulation negating a Falcons’ power-play and gave the Bears a one-minute power-play in the extra session. Levasseur, who had 21 saves in the game, helped to turn away the powerful Hershey offense and send the game to a shootout.
In the shootout Levasseur turned away all Hershey shooters including Gordon, Alexandre Giroux, and Chris Bourque. Braden Holtby’s success in the overtime was similiar until Hisey’s 6th round shot found its' way through the rookie goal keeper and into the net.
It was Hershey who had the early advantage as Giroux scored his league-leading 36th goal to open the scoring. Giroux took a cross-ice pass from Grant McNeill and scored past a diving Levasseur. Giroux’s shot ended up being only one of two shots in the opening period as the Falcons shut down the Bears offense after the goal.
The Falcons would not be intimidated by the first-place Bears and the Falcons rattled off three first period goals to take the lead. Linglet evened the score a couple minutes after Giroux’s goal by putting his own rebound top-shelf past Holtby. Not even a minute ticked off the clock before the Falcons scored again at 5:38 of the first. Dean Arsene scored this time with his first goal of the season against his old team with a soft dump from the point that found its' way to the back of the net.
“It was a fluke, but I’ll take it anyway I can get it,” said Arsene after the game. “The guys [Hershey] were yapping at me but I was having fun out there. You usually see one or two guys you played with but I know that entire team.”
The Falcons wasted no time with the two-man advantage they received with penalties from Bourque and and Pinizzotto. Wiseman scored his 19th goal of the year and first of the night just 15 seconds into the two-man advantage to give the Falcons the 3-1 lead.
Wiseman picked up his second goal of the night on the man advantage and gave the Falcons another two-goal lead at 4-2. Linglet, who picked up his third point of the night, took the puck from behind the net and fed Wiseman who crashed the net and to pick up the power-play tally.
“If we don’t put our best foot forward we’re going to lose,” said Wiseman. “We showed we can play with any team in the league tonight.”
3 Stars of the Game
1. SPR Chad Wiseman (2 goals, 1 assist)
2. SPR Charles Linglet (1 goal, 2 assists)
3. SPR Dean Arsene (1 goal)
Springfield Falcons Lineup
Charles Linglet (7) - Chad Wiseman (15) - Colton Fretter (19)
Liam Reddox (9) - Rob Hisey (13) - Slava Trukhno (11)
Ryan MacMurchy (10) - Ryan O'Marra (22) - Colin McDonald (18)
Matt Marquardt (27) - Bryan Lerg (16) - Jason Pitton (39)
Chris Armstrong (32) - Johan Motin (8)
J.F. David (3) - Jordan Bendfield (33)
Dean Arsene (29) - Jake Taylor (25)
J.P. Levasseur (31)
Bryan Pitton (35)
Falcons Scratches - Bryan Young (Healthy), Matt Nickerson (Healthy), Geoff Paukovich (Healthy), Alex Plante (Injured), Kip Brennan (Injured)
Game Night Notes ....
Game Setup: The Hershey Bears come to Springfield with the best record in the AHL. The Bears are 50-12-0-2 on the season and are riding a six game winning streak entering their game Saturday against the Falcons.
In the only other meeting this season, the Falcons won 3-2 in a shootout in Hershey back on November 21. Ryan O’Marra tied the game late in the third and Chad Wiseman scored the lone shootout goal to give the Falcons the win.
Falcons Player Notes:
• Colton Fretter had a goal in the last game with Hershey. Fretter leads the team with 22 on the season.
• Charles Linglet tallied an assist against the Bears this season. Linglet is 4th in the league with 67 points this season.
• Chad Wiseman now has 18 goals on the season and is only three points behind Fretter for second on the team.
Hershey Player Notes:
• Keith Aucoin leads the league in scoring with 85 points. Aucoin has 31 goals and is one of three Hershey players who have 30+ goals.
• Alexandre Giroux leads the Bears and the league with 35 goals this season.
• Andrew Gordon is the third Bears’ skater with 30+ goals this season. Gordon’s 30 tallies place him 4th in the AHL among goal scorers.
• Rookie goalie Braden Holtby is 6th in the league with a 2.26 goals against average.
Game Night Notebook ....
Atlantic Division Roundup
The Lowell Devils moved into a tie with the Manchester Monarchs for third place in the division with a 3-1 win last night in Syracuse. The Monarchs fell in their game against the second place Pirates by a score of 4-0 to allow the Devils to move into the the third spot, both teams have 76 points entering tonight's action. The Devils are visiting the seventh place Wolf Pack, who won 4-2 in Springfield last night, while the Monarchs are idle.
Portland's win moved them to 80 points and gave them a little more room between the Devils and Monarchs. The other top team, Worcester, also won last night. The Sharks had two goals from T.J. Trevelyan as they held on to beat the Binghamton Senators 6-4 in Worcester. The Sharks are off tonight, so Portland will look to inch closer to the top spot as they host the same Senators.
The Bridgeport Sound Tigers may not be in the Atlantic Division playoff picture at the moment but their 71 points puts them in the last spot in the East Division. The Tigers have two more points than the East's fourth place team, the W-B/Scranton Penguins, and if the playoffs started today the Tigers would meet the East's best team, Hershey, in the first round. The Tigers and Pens kept pace with each other last night as both teams skated away with victories. The Tigers won the first in a two night stay in Norfolk 3-2 in a shootout. The Pens also went on the road beating the P-Bruins 5-3 at The Dunk. The Bruins will look to get back on track and try to get back into the playoff picture tonight as they visit the Adirondack Phantoms in Glenns Fall, NY.
Around the League
In the East Division the Albany River Rats earned a little extra breathing space in second place with Norfolk's shootout loss and their own 4-3 win over the Rochester Americans. The Penguins win in Providence also moved them to within striking distance of the Admirals as only four points separate the third and fourth place teams.
The Abbotsford Heat continued to rise in the North Division standings as all the teams continue to chase the Western Conference's best, the Hamilton Bulldogs. The Heat's 3-2 shootout win over the Lake Erie Monsters at Abbostsford Sports and Entertainment Centre and Rochester's loss against the River Rats moved them into a tie with the Americans for second place. The Americans will look to get back into sole possession of second when they visit the Syracuse Crunch tonight. The Heat will look for a second win over the Monsters tonight in Abbotsford.
The Chicago Wolves held a six point lead over the Rockford Ice Hogs for first in the West entering last night. The Wolves still have that cushion after they were shutout in Toronto against the Marlies and the Manitoba Moose ran over the Hogs by a 6-1 final score. Rockford is in Manitoba again tonight and the Wolves will host the Houston Aeros at the All State Arena as both teams look to rebound after last night's loses. The whole West Division is still close as the Stars are only three points behind the Hogs. Texas had a chance to move to one point with the Rockford thumping but the Stars dropped a close 2-1 game in San Antonio.
Blue and Copper Hockey: Edmonton Oilers
The Oilers have only won twice since the conclusion of the Olympic break going into tonight's game against the Maple Leafs in Toronto. Edmonton and Toronto currently have the two worst records in the NHL going into tonight's game. Former Falcons' work-horse Devan Dubnyk is still without a win through his first 11 games in the National Hockey League. Dubnyk had possibly his best chance tonight when the Oilers were in Montreal. Dubnyk made 22 saves and only surrendered one goal in the shootout but the Edmonton still fell to the Habs 5-4. Theo Peckham, Taylor Chorney, and Chris Minard are all still occupying spots on the Oilers' roster. All three have spent the majority of the season in Springfield. Minard's call-up is his first with the Oilers and he appeared in Thursday's game in Montreal.