FALCONS ROUT PHANTOMS TO CLINCH FOUR-POINT NIGHT
Springfield, Mass. - After closing out their suspended game from Feb. 17 with a come-from-behind 3-2 shootout win earlier in the day, the Springfield Falcons (32-14-4-3) routed the Adirondack Phantoms (21-28-2-2) on Friday night at the MassMutual Center, 7-2, to cap off a four-point evening.
Click here for the box score.
Click here for the highlights and postgame reaction.
Click here for the recap of the Feb. 17 completed game.
With two wins on the day, Springfield closed to within three points of the Syracuse Crunch with two games in hand for first place in the Eastern Conference. The Falcons extended their lead in the Northeast Division to 12 points over the Connecticut Whale.
Springfield took the momentum of its shootout win into the second game, scoring three times in the opening period to establish an early and sizeable lead over Adirondack.
Ryan Russell took a puck from Sean Collins off a face-off win, skated to the slot, and snapped it by Phantoms goaltender Cal Heeter at 4:48 of the first, putting Springfield up, 1-0.
Scott Howes, who scored the equalizer in the conclusion of the Feb. 17 game earlier in the day, led a rush into the zone minutes later and eventually struck, as Springfield made it 2-0. Following Springfield's entry into Adirondack's end, Theo Ruth pinched to the right circle and centered the puck for Howes, who snapped it past Heeter's stick at 9:59 for his second goal of the day, and first of the game.
Trent Vogelhuber took a lead pass from Nathan Moon, darted in on Heeter by himself, and guided the puck into the net with a forehand, backhand deke at 13:58 for his first-career AHL tally, opening Springfield's edge to 3-0 at 13:58.
Early in the second, Andrew Joudrey positioned himself in the slot and rocketed a pass from Howes by Heeter, as Springfield opened its cushion to 4-0 at 2:18.
Cody Bass threaded a pass through a lane to Russell following the halfway point of the game, generating a two-on-one advantage for Springfield. Russell dropped the puck to the right circle for Jonathan Audy-Marchessault, who rang in his first goal since Jan. 15 at 13:37 to extend the Falcons' bubble to 5-0.
After Jason Akeson toed the blue line to keep the puck in the zone on an Adirondack power play, Matthew Ford wristed a shot by Springfield netminder Curtis McElhinney from the left circle at 16:30 of the second, putting the Phantoms on the board, 5-1.
Already with two assists on the game, Collins redirected a shot by David Savard from the right goal line into the net at 11:28 of the third period, lengthening Springfield's lead to 6-1.
Rob Bordson responded for Adirondack at 11:57, backhanding a puck past McElhinney on a breakaway for the Phantoms' final goal, 6-2.
Nathan Moon snatched a puck from Mike Banwell and slid it past Heeter at 18:43 for his first goal as a Falcon, as Springfield won, 7-2.
McElhinney (22-10-2) denied 21 of 23 Adirondack shots. Heeter (8-13-2) let in seven goals on 27 shots.
The Falcons welcome the Providence Bruins to The Nest on "Pink in the Rink Night presented by TD Bank" on Saturday to benefit the Mary Kay Foundation at 7:00 p.m. Springfield closes out its home three-in-three on Sunday at 3:00 p.m. against the Worcester Sharks, presented by Dunkin Donuts.
For complete details of this weekend's promotions, click here.
Single-game tickets to see the Falcons in 2012-2013 can be purchased at the MassMutual Center Box Office from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. through game time on Saturday home dates, and starting four hours prior to Sunday home contests. Fans can also purchase tickets by logging onto Ticketmaster.com. For information about discounted group packages to Falcons home games, call (413) 739-GOAL (4625).
Audy-Marchessault's goal snapped a 14-game drought, as the second-year pro struck for the first time since registering a hat trick on Jan. 15 in Manchester. He tied Ryan Johansen and Cam Atkinson for the team lead with 17 goals, and moved into a share of third place in the AHL with 51 points. Audy-Marchessault is in a tie for first place in the league with 34 assists...12 of Springfield's 18 skaters had a point...Collins' three-point night (1g-2a) was a career high...The Falcons swept the Phantoms at home this season in three games...The seven goals scored by Springfield were the most since its 7-5 win over Manchester on Jan. 15...The five-goal margin of victory was Springfield's largest since it beat Connecticut, 5-0, on Dec. 2...Seven-different players scored for the Falcons...McElhinney moved into sole possession of ninth place in Falcons history with his 22nd victory...The Falcons wore green jerseys to celebrate "Irish Night"