|FINAL (OT) | 2017-18 Season, Game 31 | Friday December 22, 2017
Place Bell, Laval, QC
Forward lines and defense pairings:
Terry – Cracknell – Scherbak
Boucher – McCarron – Gregoire
Petti – Audette – Waked
Veilleux – Eisenschmid – Baun
Gelinas – Taormina
Parisi – Juulsen
Bourque – Leblanc
Willie Corrin, David Broll
Jeremiah Addison (shoulder)
After a tremendous effort against the red-hot Syracuse Crunch on Wednesday night, the Rocket got back to work on Friday night with the first of a back-to-back series against the Rochester Americans.
The first period seemed a bit cautiously played, with the Amerks outshooting the Rocket substantially for the first half of the period. Physicality was in no short supply, however, as the two teams roughed each other up in a few post-whistle scrums throughout the period.
Rochester got on the board first after Nick Baptiste centered the puck perfectly, only to have Kyle Criscuolo deflect the shot directly into the net for the 1-0 lead.
Charlie Lindgren had some big saves in the period, as he tracked the puck well and stayed with shooters until the last possible second. At the other end of the ice, Linus Ullmark also robbed a few Laval shots, including a solid chance by Jordan Boucher in close.
Late in the period, McCarron dug the puck out down low behind the net and fed it up to Eric Gelinas on the point, who fired it home to even the score at 1-1.
The middle frame was filled with penalties, but both teams successfully killed off the infractions. Chris Terry banged home the go-ahead goal early in the period when Tom Parisi shot the puck from the point and Terry cleaned up the rebound off of Ullmark.
Terry had another golden opportunity later in the period, but hit the post instead. He entered the game just two points shy of tying the league leaders for first place in the AHL points race.
In the third period, things seemed almost sluggish. The teams exchanged a pair of penalties, but no damage was done on either power play. And while Laval outshot their opponents in the period, much of their play was done from the perimeter without any real danger.
Then, with just 1:40 left in the game, formed IceCap Zach Redmond blasted the puck from the point and Criscuolo got his second goal of the night. Immediately following that, Nikita Scherbak took an ill-timed high-sticking penalty, leaving his team shorthanded for the remainder of regulation and a bit of the overtime period.
Rochester seemed to control the pace in the extra minutes, but Laval managed to get some good shots on net as well. With just over a minute left, however, the Rocket turned over the puck in their own end and with Baptiste wide open it only took a quick wrister to seal the victory for the Americans.
These two teams face off again tomorrow night, and two more times next week when Laval goes on the road. The Rocket will need to find a way to maintain pressure, and not take their foot off the gas until the final horn sounds to end each game.
▲ Chris Terry, Michael McCarron, Charlie Lindgren, Eric Gelinas
▼ Nikita Scherbak, Adam Cracknell
|0 for 4||Power Play||0 for 4|
|AHL Three Stars|
Interviews conducted by Amy Johnson for AHL Report
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