FINAL (SO) | 2018-19 Season, Game 28 | Friday December 14, 2018 
Place Bell, Laval, QC

ROCKET
Laval

2-3

CRUNCH
Syracuse

Photo by Laval Rocket

Lineup

Forward lines and defense pairings: 

Shinkaruk – Vejdemo – Grenier
Belzile – McCarron – Alain
Jevpalovs – Evans – Froese
Pezzetta – Audette – Waked

Alzner – Mete
Depres – Lernout
Ouellet – Lamarche

Goaltenders:
McNiven
Marcoux

Scratches:

David Sklenicka, Phelix Martineau, Morgan Adams-Moisan

Injury List:

Gustav Olofsson (shoulder), Cale Fleury (day-to-day), Charlie Lindgren (lower body), Hayden Verbeek (upper body)

Game Report

Game Report written by Chris G

The Syracuse Crunch visited Place Bell on Friday night to face the Laval Rocket in the first of the two-game weekend matchup between these two division rivals.

The Rocket have won their last two games, against the Marlies and the Senators, while the Crunch is coming off an 8-1 victory against the Marlies on Wednesday night. Syracuse won with a score of 6-4 the only other time they faced Laval this season.

Lukas Vejdemo returned to the lineup after missing the last two games due to injury. Hayden Verbeek was out of the lineup after suffering an injury during Wednesday night’s game and Antoine Waked drew back into the lineup, replacing Morgan Adams-Moisan. 

The Crunch scored 2:26 into the first period as Dennis Yan redirected Nolan Valleau’s shot from the point. Michael McNiven, starting his third consecutive game, had no chance to stop the puck.

Laval’s most dangerous scoring chance came as Alex Belzile was on a breakaway and drew a hooking penalty on Cameron Gaunce. Belzile deservedly wanted a penalty shot, but the referee disagreed.

Laval scored 1:04 into the second period as Maxim Lamarche stretched his stick to keep the puck in the offensive zone and found Alexandre Alain all open in front of Eddie Pasquale to score his fourth goal of the season.

Eight seconds into their third power play of the night, Michael McCarron scored his fourth of the season as he put in the rebound from Belzile’s point shot. The Crunch tied the game 2:17 later as Alexander Volkov completed a two-on-one play with Cory Conacher. Syracuse applied the pressure for most of the period and outshot Laval 10-6 in that frame.

Both teams gave each other the opportunity to go ahead in the third period as six penalties were called in the final 6:22 of regulation, but none were able to capitalize. There were a lot of scoring chances exchanged by both teams in overtime, but no pucks went past McNiven and Pasquale.

It took six rounds to determine a winner in the shootout as Otto Somppi scored the game winner. Daniel Audette was the only scorer for Laval in the shootout.

Laval did a good job on the penalty kill, going 3-for-3 against Syracuse’s first-place power play. “We blocked shots and cut the pass across”, said Alain.

The Rocket weren’t able to capitalize on their opponent’s indiscipline and went 1-for-7 with the extra attacker. “We need to shoot more [..] get some greasy goals,” said Victor Mete after the game about the power play.

“Dog fight. Playoff atmosphere from our end for sure. The guys played hard.” said Joel Bouchard following the game. Listen in the player below for full post-game audio.

These two teams face off against each other again on Saturday at 3:00pm Eastern time.

▲     Alexandre Alain, Victor Mete, Michael McNiven, Michael McCarron

▼     Maxim Lamarche, Simon Despres, Xavier Ouellet

 Statistics 
ROCKET CRUNCH
23 Shots 28
1 for 7 Power Play 0 for 3
8 Penalty Minutes 14
 Scoring
 FINAL 1 2 3 OT SO T
 Rocket (10-14-2-2) 0 2 0 0 0 2
 Crunch (15-6-2-0) 1 1 0 0 1 3
Scorers Goalies
  • LAV: Alain (4), McCarron (4)
  • SYR: Yan (7), Volkov (7)
  • LAV: McNiven (L) 3-4-0-1
  • SYR: Pasquale (W) 7-2-2-0
 AHL Three Stars
ahl14_200  

  1. Andy Andreoff  SYR
  2. Carter Verhaeghe  SYR
  3. Michael McCarron  LAV

 Video highlights
 Post-game interview
Post-game interview with Joel Bouchard:

Post-game interview with Michael McNiven:

Post-game interview with Victor Mete:

Post-game interview with Michael McCarron:

Interviews conducted by Chris G for AHL Report

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