|FINAL | 2017-18 Season, Game 65 | Saturday March 17, 2018
Onondaga County War Memorial Arena, Syracuse, NY
Forward lines and defense pairings:
Rychel – Cracknell – Terry
Boucher – Petti – Eisenschmid
Broll – Ebbing – Gregoire
Veilleux – Blain – Desjardins
Parisi – Taormina
Bourque – Gelinas
Hamilton – Petgrave
Willie Corrin, Daniel Audette (lower body), Stefan Leblanc (day to day), Antoine Waked (upper body)
Jeremiah Addison (shoulder)
Whatever feel-good momentum the Rocket took out of Utica on Friday was quickly forgotten when they took the ice in Syracuse Saturday night.
In a building that’s always loud and against a team who’s always physical, Laval let the wheels come off in the discipline department and it left them without key players and/or on the penalty kill entirely too much in this game.
Both teams went home with 13 infractions for a total of 32 penalty minutes each. For the Rocket, veterans like David Broll, Adam Cracknell, Yannick Veilleux, and Chris Terry all found themselves in the penalty box for fighting or roughing at least once during the night. Some of those penalties were double minors, causing even more damage and putting more responsibility (and ice time) on the backs of the remainder of the bench.
Michael McNiven, despite the loss, had a decent night in net and made some very solid saves in the opening period, especially. But the Crunch scored two quick goals just 34 seconds apart in the final two minutes of the opening frame to put them up 2-0 going into the first intermission.
The visiting team started to turn things around to open the second period when Niki Petti took a perfect centering pass from Terry while on a power play and banged the puck past Connor Ingram on the doorstep to bring Laval within one goal.
After a series of fights and scrums, the Crunch got that goal right back and then added a power play goal of their own to begin the third period. Despite being down by three goals, the Rocket were still battling to get back into the game. Petti, now with three goals in his last two games, scored his second of the night to give his team a boost of energy.
But it wasn’t enough, and tempers continued to take over common sense. The Rocket couldn’t muster any more offense, and Syracuse potted an empty-netter to put the game away for good.
Head coach Sylvain Lefebvre wasn’t pleased with the performance after the game (you can listen to his full audio in the player below), and called out discipline and bad penalties as the difference-maker in this game. His team now heads home to Laval to prepare for another three-in-three next weekend when they’ll host the Charlotte Checkers twice before heading to Belleville.
▲ Niki Petti, Jordan Boucher, Michael McNiven
▼ David Broll, Eric Gelinas, Luc-Olivier Blain
|1 for 7||Power Play||1 for 8|
|AHL Three Stars|
|Post-game interview with Sylvain Lefebvre
Post-game interview with Niki Petti
Post-game interview with Adam Cracknell
Post-game interview with Markus Eisenschmid
Interviews conducted by Amy Johnson for AHL Report
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