Alex Belzile – Michael McCarron – Riley Barber
Dale Weise – Ryan Poehling – Antoine Waked
Alexandre Alain – Lukas Vejdemo – Joe Cox
Nikita Jevpalovs – Jake Evans – Kevin Lynch
Xavier Ouellet – Maxim Lamarche
Gustav Olofsson – Christian Folin
Karl Alzner – Josh Brook
Charlie Lindgren – Keith Kinkaid
David Sklenicka, Ryan Culkin, Michael Pezzetta, Otto Leskinen (recalled to MTL)
William Pelletier (undisclosed), Phil Varone (wrist), Evan McEneny (lower body), Noah Juulsen (upper body)
After a disappointing road trip last week, the Rocket returned home to Laval for a one-game visit to Place Bell where they welcomed the Cleveland Monsters. Gustav Olofsson was returned from the Canadiens earlier in the day, but Otto Leskinen was called up in his place. Alex Belzile and Xavier Ouellet both made their return to the lineup after missing games due to injury. Additionally, with Keith Kinkaid clearing waivers from Montreal, Cayden Primeau was recalled to the big club for his first NHL stint.
In a nutshell, the penalty kill wasn’t very effective at either end of the ice on this night. Five total goals were scored in the game, and all five of them were scored on the power play. Laval was fortunate that they were able to tally one more power play goal than the Monsters to earn themselves a victory.
Alexandre Alain opened the scoring in the first period with a power play goal set up with a nice pass from Jake Evans. Alain then blasted a one-timer from the point and found the back of Cleveland’s net.
Markus Hannikainen returned the favor when Adam Clendening ripped a point shot which Hannikainen deflected past Charlie Lindgren in close.
Belzile and Ouellet were the next to get on the score board, wasting no time in making an impact once back in the lineup. Both forwards scored on five-on-three advantages: Belzile a point shot and Ouellet with a tap-in on a rebound.
Hannikainen would put one more on the board for the Monsters, in the third period, but the strong work of Lindgren in the crease ensured that Cleveland couldn’t make a full comeback.
The physicality of the game took its toll, however. Besides former Canadiens prospect Stefan Matteau dropping the gloves with Maxim Lamarche, three players left the ice during the game and didn’t return: Evans, Belzile, and Dale Weise.
The Rocket take this victory and head back out on the road, once again traveling to Syracuse and Springfield on Friday and Saturday. Expect to see Kinkaid make his AHL debut with the Rocket on Friday night against the Crunch.
Plus / Minus
▲ Ryan Poehling, Charlie Lindgren, Xavier Ouellet
▼ Karl Alzner, Maxim Lamarche