FALCONS BEAT CRUNCH 6-5
March 10, 2012 - The Springfield Falcons continued their hot play on home ice on Saturday night as the Falcons used a four goal first period to set the tone for a 6-5 win over the Syracuse Crunch in front of 4,788 at the MassMutual Center. The Falcons have now won their last three straight home games and they are 6-2-1-0 in their last nine contests at "The Nest." The Falcons are back at home on Sunday afternoon when they host the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins at 3 pm.
The Falcons needed a win on Saturday to stay in the playoff hunt and they used a very strong first period in picking up their 28th win of the year. The scoring started fast and furious for the Falcons at 8:42 of the opening period when Tomas Kubalik tipped in an Alexandre Giroux slap shot from the right point on the power play giving the Falcons a 1-0 lead.
Just 23 seconds later, Matt Calvert redirected a Wade MacLeod shot giving the Birds a two goal advantage early in the first period. At 15:09 of the opening frame, Cody Bass poked home a rebound on the man advantage giving Springfield a 3-0 lead. Just 36-seconds after Bass' marker, Syracuse's Troy Bodie tallied a shorthanded marker cutting the Falcons' lead to 3-1, but MacLeod converted on the power play at 16:59 of the first period giving the Falcons a 4-1 lead through 20 minutes.
In the second period, Syracuse battled back and used a goal from Kyle Cumiskey just 21 seconds into the middle frame cutting the Falcons' advantage to 4-2. Kubalik added his second goal of the contest at 4:25 of the second period putting Springfield on top 5-2, but Peter Holland tallied a pair of goals just two minutes apart midway through the second period pulling the Crunch to within one at 5-4.
With Syracuse holding on to the momentum, the Crunch ended up on a later power play in the second frame, but Bass was pulled down while on a breakaway during the penalty kill drawing a penalty shot, which Bass converted at 18:07 giving Springfield a 6-4 cushion heading into the final 20 minutes.
In the third period, Syracuse pulled to within one, but Falcons goaltender Paul Dainton held down the fort and helped the Falcons earn a 6-5 victory.
The win pulled the Falcons to within three points of a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
Alexandre Giroux - Martin St. Pierre - Tomas Kubalik
Matt Calvert - Nick Drazenovic - Wade MacLeod
Nate Longpre - Andrew Joudrey - Cody Bass
Tim Spencer - Ryan Garlock - Aaron Bogosian
Patrick Cullity - Theo Ruth
Cody Goloubef - Dalton Prout
Brent Regner- Anton Blomqvist
Not dressed: David Savard (Injured), Nick Holden (Injured), Mark Dekanich (Injured), Greg Amadio (AHL Suspension), Adam Mair (AHL Suspension), Jake Morley
Syracuse Crunch 5 at Springfield Falcons 6 - Status: Final
Saturday, March 10, 2012 - MassMutual Center
Syracuse 1 3 1 - 5
Springfield 4 2 0 - 6
1st Period-1, Springfield, Kubalik 9 (Giroux, St. Pierre), 8:42 (PP). 2, Springfield, Calvert 13 (Drazenovic, MacLeod), 9:05. 3, Springfield, Bass 4 (Kubalik, Giroux), 15:09 (PP). 4, Syracuse, Bodie 3 15:45 (SH). 5, Springfield, MacLeod 7 (Calvert, Drazenovic), 16:59 (PP). Penalties-Calvert Spr (boarding), 0:45; Cumiskey Syr (hooking), 7:31; Brittain Syr (major - boarding), 14:27.
2nd Period-6, Syracuse, Cumiskey 3 (Holland), 0:21. 7, Springfield, Kubalik 10 (St. Pierre), 4:25. 8, Syracuse, Holland 20 (Cumiskey, Maroon), 8:47. 9, Syracuse, Holland 21 (Maroon), 10:46. 10, Springfield, Bass 5 18:07 (SH TXT_PS). Penalties-MacLeod Spr (hooking), 16:11.
3rd Period-11, Syracuse, Maroon 27 (Palmieri, Holland), 11:51. Penalties-Cullity Spr (holding), 2:44; Brittain Syr (interference), 7:03; Holland Syr (boarding), 12:29; Maroon Syr (hooking), 15:22; Maroon Syr (misconduct - abuse of officials), 18:27; St. Pierre Spr (tripping), 18:57.
Shots on Goal-Syracuse 6-20-10-36. Springfield 10-6-9-25.
Power Play Opportunities-Syracuse 0 / 4; Springfield 3 / 7.
Goalies-Syracuse, Niittymaki 4-8-0 (25 shots-19 saves). Springfield, Legace 11-17-1 (15 shots-11 saves); Dainton 10-8-0 (21 shots-20 saves).
Referees-Jarrod Ragusin (54).
Linesmen-Robert St. Lawrence (10), Rich Patry (52).
GAME PREVIEW – The Springfield Falcons and Syracuse Crunch meet for the second time this season when they drop the puck at the MassMutual Center starting at 7 pm. The Falcons and Crunch met back on December 28 in Syracuse with the Crunch beating the Falcons 5-2. Alexandre Giroux and Tomas Kubalik scored for the Falcons in the first meeting with the Crunch, while Peter Holland led the way for Syracuse with two goals and two assists in that contest.
The Falcons enter tonight’s action hosting their first home game since February 25 after a five-game road trip that concluded last night in Manchester, NH. Springfield will play the next three games on home ice. The Falcons are 5-2-1-0 in their last eight home contests, including back to back wins on February 24 and 25.
The Crunch head into Springfield having won their last three games after a 2-1 win over the Albany Devils in a shootout last night on home ice. Syracuse returns home to host the Devils again on Sunday afternoon.
Eastern Conference Standings entering Saturday's game
1. Norfolk - 83 pts
2. St. John's - 79 pts
3. Bridgeport - 71 pts
4. Wilkes-Barre - 75 pts
5. Hershey - 71 pts
6. Connecticut - 70 pts
7. Albany - 64 pts (Saturday at Adirondack)
8. Worcester - 63 pts (Saturday vs. Providence)
9. Manchester - 63 pts (Saturday at Portland)
10. Portland - 60 pts (Saturday vs. Manchester)
11. Adirondack - 59 pts (Saturday vs. Albany)
12. Springfield - 59 pts (Saturday vs. Syracuse)
13. Providence - 59 pts (Saturday at Worcester)
14. Syracuse - 58 pts (Saturday at Springfield)
15. Binghamton - 52 pts
FALCONS TRANSACTIONS – The Springfield Falcons announced Saturday morning that captain Dane Byers has been recalled by the Columbus Blue Jackets. Byers joins Maksim Mayorov, who was recalled by Columbus on Thursday…..Chris D’Alvise was recalled from the ECHL’s Stockton Thunder on Saturday, while forward Jake Morley has been signed to an Amateur Tryout Agreement. Morley recently finished his college career at Clarkson University where he served as team captain this past season.
CRUNCH TRANSACTIONS - The Syracuse Crunch announced that the Anaheim Ducks have recalled center Ryan O'Marra. O'Marra, 24, has appeared in seven games for the Crunch since being traded from the Edmonton Oilers in exchange for defenseman Bryan Rodney on February 16, 2012. O'Marra appeared in 40 games with the Barons, collecting 17 points (8g, 9a). O'Marra has appeared in 31 career NHL games with the Edmonton Oilers. The center was originally drafted by the New York Islanders in the first round, 15th overall, of the 2005 NHL entry draft.
FALCONS ALUMNI – The Crunch currently have three former Falcons on their roster in Matt Smaby, J.F. Jacques and Troy Bodie. Ryan O’Marra, Nate Guenin and Jeff Deslauriers are on recall to the Anaheim Ducks and they also saw time in Springfield.