FALCONS EARN POINT - LOSE IN OT TO MONARCHSFebruary 18, 2008 - The Springfield Falcons lost to the Manchester Monarchs in overtime on Monday by a score of 2-1 in front of 3,522 at the MassMutual Center. Manchester's Troy Milam scored the game-winner in the extra session, his second marker of the game.
Trailing 1-0 late in the third period, Springfield's Theo Peckham evened the score at 1-1 when he tallied his sixth goal of the season at 15:40 of the final frame. Peckham's goal came after a scramble at the top of the crease and Peckham was waiting in the slot area to tie the score.
"I thought this was a game tonight in which both teams realized the importance of the contest," said Falcons head coach Kelly Buchberger, who saw his team maintain a three point lead over the Monarchs for the fourth and final playoff spot in the Atlantic Division. "I thought five-on-five we controlled the play, we just had some issues with our special teams."
After two-plus periods of scoreless hockey, Manchester opened the scoring at 8:33 of the third period when Milam scored his first goal of the evening on the power play. Springfield went 0-6 on the man advantage as Monarchs goaltender Daniel Taylor was steady between the pipes. Falcons goaltender Devan Dubnyk started his second straight game and was also very solid stopping 21 of 23 shots on the night.
"I thought Devan (Dubnyk) played very well for us," said Buchberger. "He gave us a chance to win, and he has been giving us those type of performances night after night. It was a hard-fought game and I thought our team gave an honest effort and that's all you can ask from the guys."
The Falcons outshot the Monarchs 36-23 for the game. Springfield still has a three-point lead over Manchester for fourth place in the Atlantic Division. The Falcons will next play on Friday night when they host the Portland Pirates at "The Nest."
Schremp - Pouliot - Thoresen
Trukhno - O'Marra - Reddox
Simon - Almtorp - Bodie
Werner - McDonald
Kemp - Rourke
Peckham - Syvret
Young - Gabinet
FALCONS SCRATCHES - T.J. Reynolds (Injured), Tyler Spurgeon (Injured), Rick Berry (Injured), Brad Farynuk (Injured), Les Reaney (Healthy), Stephane Goulet (Healthy), Sebastien Bisaillon (Injured), Jean-Francois Jacques (Injured), Chris Murray (Healthy), Jacob Micflikier (Injured), Tim Sestito (Injured)
GAME SETUP: The Springfield Falcons and Manchester Monarchs meet for the sixth time this season when they play a President’s Day matinee on Monday afternoon starting at 1:00 pm. This will be the fourth meeting in Springfield between the Falcons and Monarchs and first head-to-head match-up at “The Nest” since November 21. The Falcons are 2-2-1-0 against the Monarchs this season, including 2-1 on home ice. Following Monday’s contest, Springfield and Manchester will meet again on Sunday, March 2 at the Verizon Wireless Arena.
Falcons center Patrick Thoresen leads Springfield in scoring against Manchester this season with six goals and one assist for seven points in five games played. Rob Schremp leads the Falcons in assists against the Monarchs this season with four and is second in points with five. Falcons goaltender Devan Dubnyk has appeared in four games against Manchester this year posting a record of 1-2 with a 3.65 goals against average and .904 save percentage, while fellow netminder Jeff Deslauriers has a record of 1-1 with a 1.38 goals against average and .960 save percentage in two appearances against Manchester.
Manchester forward Gabe Gauthier and defenseman Peter Harrold both lead the Monarchs in scoring against the Falcons this season with one goal and five assists for six points in five games played. David Meckler leads Manchester in goals against Springfield with three markers. Monarchs goaltender Erik Ersberg has appeared in four games against the Falcons this season posting a record of 2-1-0 with a 2.91 goals against average and .888 save percentage.
The Falcons head into Monday’s game after defeating the Providence Bruins by a score of 2-1 on Saturday night. Stephen Werner and Marc Pouliot scored for the Falcons, while goaltender Devan Dubnyk stopped 28 of 29 shots in earning his fifth win of the season. Springfield remains in fourth place in the Atlantic Division with a record of 24-21-4-5 good for 57 points, four points ahead of the Manchester Monarchs in the Atlantic Division standings. Tonight will be the third game of a five-game homestand for the Falcons that concludes next weekend when they host Portland on Friday and Providence on Saturday.
The Monarchs head into Monday’s game winless in their last five games going 0-4-0-1 in that span. Manchester lost their last game played when they were defeated by the Lowell Devils by a score of 5-1 on Saturday night. The Monarchs remain in fifth place in the Atlantic Division with a record of 23-24-4-3 good for 53 points. Following today’s contest, Manchester will return home for three straight home games starting on Friday night against the Norfolk Admirals.
FALCONS TRANSACTIONS: The Falcons announced Saturday that they signed forward Les Reaney to a
standard American Hockey League contract, while also signing defenseman Chris Murray to a Professional
Tryout Agreement (PTO). The Falcons also announced they have released forward Daniel Sparre from his Professional
Reaney is beginning his pro career after spending the last three seasons with Niagara University. In 25 games with Niagara this season, the 6-foot-2, 225-pound native of Ceylon, Saskatchewan tallied five goals and 10 assists for 15 points in 25 games. Reaney averaged a point-a-game last season with Niagara collecting 16 goals and 28 assists
for 44 points in 37 games ranking third on the team in scoring last year.
Murray is in his first full season of professional hockey after completing his four-year collegiate career with the University
of New Hampshire Wildcats during the 2006-07 campaign. In 45 games with the Phoenix Roadrunners of the ECHL this
year, the Dover, MA native registered one goal and 13 assists for 14 points and 122 penalty minutes. Murray has also
played in one game with the Lake Erie Monsters of the AHL this season and the 6-foot-2, 190-pound blueliner made
his AHL debut with the Peoria Rivermen at the end of last year.
POULIOT EXTENDS STREAK: Center Marc Pouliot has collected at least a point in six straight games recording six goals and three assists for nine points in that span. Pouliot was the game’s first star on February 8 against Philadelphia scoring two goals and one assist, while also playing in his 200th pro game on February 9 against Lowell. Pouliot scored a pair of goals in Hartford on February 13, followed by netting the game-winner on February 16 against Providence.
MONARCHS STREAKS AND NOTES: Manchester defenseman Peter Harrold has collected a point in three straight contests collecting three assists in that span. Harrold is second in the AHL in scoring among defensemen with seven goals and 35 assists for 42 points in 48 games played. Gabe Gauthier is on a three-game scoring streak registering two goals and two assists in that span. Gauthier is currently 11th in the AHL in scoring with 19 goals and 31 assists for 50 points in 48 games. Manchester currently has the top two scoring rookies in the AHL, with one on recall to the Los Angeles Kings. Teddy Purcell leads all AHL rookies with 16 goals and 42 assists for 58 points in 47 games and is currently with the Kings, while Brian Boyle is second in the league in rookie scoring with 21 goals and 22 assists for 43 points in 47 games.
SUNDAY'S PRACTICE REPORT
The Springfield Falcons got back to work on Sunday morning after a very rewarding 2-1 win over the first-place Providence Bruins on Saturday night. The Falcons went through a brief on-ice workout with some players making their Falcons debuts during the workout, and a handful of other players taking a day to rest some injuries.
Both defenseman Chris Murray and forward Les Reaney participated in Sunday's practice after both players signed contracts on Saturday. Murray was signed to a Professional Tryout Agreement, while Reaney signed a standard American Hockey League contract. Both players have a chance of being in Monday's lineup when the Falcons host the Manchester Monarchs at the MassMutual Center starting at 1:00 pm.
All of the focus on Sunday was on Monday's matinee against the Monarchs. The Falcons remain in fourth place in the Atlantic Division holding on to the final playoff spot, four points ahead of fifth place Manchester. Monday's game will be a four point swing in the standings, either the Falcons will have a six-point advantage, or the Monarchs will move within two points of the fourth spot in the division.
"All the games this time of year are very important," said Falcons head coach Kelly Buchberger. "We are happy with our performance on Saturday, but we have to make sure we are ready on Monday, we will stay with our focus of playing hard for 60 minutes."
The Falcons had a pair of players get a little banged up on Saturday night including Tim Sestito. Sestito will be day-to-day nursing a lower body injury and will be a game-time decision against Manchester. Rick Berry, Jean-Francois Jacques and T.J. Reynolds all continue to improve with their respective injuries. Berry and Jacques have lower body injuries, while Reynolds has been out with an upper body injury. The Falcons did receive both Viachelsav Trukhno and Liam Reddox back this past weekend as the roster inches closer to improved health.
"We are getting healthier, but our focus is on winning games no matter who is in the lineup," said Buchberger.
Center Patrick Thoresen remains with the Falcons continuing his conditioning assignment. Thoresen arrived back in Springfield on February 7 and as part of his conditioning assignment, he can remain with Springfield for two weeks from the day he was assigned to the club. Thoresen has registered at least a point in four of the five games he has played with the Falcons since arriving back in Springfield and joins Marc Pouliot as two Springfield forwards who have been steady in the scoring department recently. Pouliot has points in six straight games, including the game-winner on Saturday.
"Patrick (Thoresen) has been very good for us this year, same with Marc (Pouliot)," said Buchberger. "When we have success, we receive contributions from all 17 skaters and two goalstenders."
All kids attending Monday's game can receive tickets for only $5.00, with game time starting at 1:00 pm.