|FINAL | 2017-18 Season, Game 42 | Friday January 19, 2018
Place Bell, Laval, QC
Forward lines and defense pairings:
[one_half]Audette – Cracknell – Scherbak
[one_half_last]Gelinas – Taormina
Simon Bourque, Thomas Ebbing
Chris Terry (lower body), Jeremiah Addison (shoulder)
After almost a week off from playing in a game, the Laval Rocket were well-rested, with plenty of practice under their belts, when they took to the ice at Place Bell on Friday night against the Belleville Senators.
Still chasing Utica for that fourth and final playoff spot, the Rocket badly needed to come away with four out of four possible points this weekend in the home-and-home series against Belleville.
The first period was a bit slow, with Laval taking most of the shots on goal but not finding any clear shooting lanes to get pucks past Danny Taylor. Ethan Werek then tipped in a shot in front of Charlie Lindgren to put the Sens up 1-0 on their only shot in the game.
The home team kept the pressure on Belleville, spending a lot of time in their zone in the opening frame, but shooting mostly from the perimeter.
On two power play chances, the Rocket couldn’t muster any goals either – especially without the services of their man advantage go-to, Chris Terry, who is still sidelined with a lower body injury. Eric Gelinas tried time and again to put his big shot from the circle past Taylor but to no avail.
The second period turned into a bit of a disaster for Laval as the Senators put up three goals in the first 10 minutes of the frame, two of which came after Nick Paul and Jeremy Gregoire left the game for fighting at puck drop after Jordan Murray potted his sixth goal of the season.
Michael McNiven came into the game in relief of Lindgren after Mike Blunden and Gabriel Gagne extended the Belleville lead to 4-0. Then the Rocket began taking unnecessary penalties, putting themselves shorthanded when they really needed to find some energy and offense. The one positive point of the middle frame was that Laval outshot their opponents 16-11, keeping the pressure on Taylor in the crease.
The final frame showed a spark of hope when Adam Cracknell scooped up the puck as it rebounded off the end boards and he wristed it past Taylor to get Laval on the board. But despite outshooting the Sens again in this period, that’s the only goal that the Rocket could muster while piling on additional penalties to kill. It was a very disappointing turnout for this team.
The Rocket need to figure out where the breakdowns occurred quickly as they head now to Belleville for a rematch on Saturday night.
▲ Niki Petti, Michael McCarron
▼ Eric Gelinas, Noah Juulsen
|0 for 4||Power Play||0 for 3|
|AHL Three Stars|
Interviews conducted by Amy Johnson for AHL Report
|Social Media: Follow @TheAHLReport on Twitter|
Follow @theAHLReport on Twitter
Be sure to follow @AllHabs on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube