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Sunday, March 28, 2010

Falcons Fall To River Rats 5-1 (AHL) / Eberle Has One Assist

By: Mike Hopey

Chris Minard scored for the Falcons but three third period goals from Jacob Micfliker, Zac Dalpe and Mike Angelidis put Albany over the top 5-1 in a Sunday matinee match-up in front of 5,705 at the MassMutual Center.

“I don’t think it was a 5-1 game,” said head coach Rob Daum. “Based on the territory and the scoring chances. We did didn’t give a lot of chances but when we did they were major and it cost us.”

Chris Terry gave the Rats the lead for good in the second period while trying to set a teammate up on a 2-on-1 rush. Terry tried to saucer a pass over a Falcons stick but the puck hit J.P. Levasseur, who made 29 saves in the loss, and found its way over the goal line. Terry’s 17th goal of the season would be all the River Rats needed to get past the Falcons.

The Falcons had opportunities but Albany goalie Justin Peters was there and made 27 saves in the game. The Falcons power-play which is 16th in the league at 17.3 percent entering the game but were 0-for-4 in the game. The River Rats were 1-for-3 with the lone power-play goal coming late in the third period.

It was Jiri Tlusty who put the River Rats on top with the games first goal at 6:26 of the period after a scoreless first period. Christ Terry found Tlusty parked in front of the net and pushed the puck past a sprawling J.P. Levasseur. The goal was Tlusty's 14th goal of the season.

Crashing the net paid off for Springfield when Minard tied the game up for the Falcons with his 17th goal of the season at 13:59 on a pass from Chad Wiseman and Jordan Eberle. The Falcons had had opportunities earlier with chances from Liam Reddox and Colin McDonald but the Falcons’ chances were all tipped wide or whizzed through the crease.

The River Rats upped the lead to two goals when Jacob Micflikier took a cross-ice pass that he sent off the post and into the net. Micflikier’s goal at 1:48 into the third was his 17th goal of the season. Dalpe added another goal and Angelidis scored the only power-play goal in the third for the River Rats.

3 Stars of the Game

1. ALB Chris Terry
2. SPR Chris Minard
3. ALB Jerome Samson

Springfield Falcons Lineup

Charles Linglet (7) - Rob Hisey (13) - Colton Fretter (19)
Chris Minard (14) - Chad Wiseman (15) - Jordan Eberle (17)
Geoff Paukovich (12) - Ryan O'Marra (22) - Colin McDonald (18)
Slava Trukhno (11) - Liam Reddox (9) - Matt Beca (38)

Chris Armstrong (32) - Jeff Petry (20)
J.F. David (3) - Jordan Bendfeld (33)
Eddie Del Grosso (28) - Jake Taylor (25)

J.P. Levasseur (31)
Bryan Pitton (35)

Game Night Notes...

Game Setup: This will be the fourth and final meeting of the season between the River Rats and the Falcons. Springfield is 2-0-1-0 agaisnt Albany this season. The Falcons won in a shootout, 4-3, in the first meeting on October 30 and rolled over the Rats on November 15 by a score of 6-2. In the latest meeting the Falcons managed to take a point in a wild 7-6 overtime loss. Liam Reddox scored two third period goals, including one with four seconds left on the clock, to tie the game. Drayson Bowman ended up scoring the game winner for the River Rats. The Falcons and River Rats typically play each other evenly, the Falcons are 9-9-1-0 against Albany over the past five seasons.

Falcons Player Notes:

• Team points leader, Charles Linglet, has five points in the season series against Albany. Linglet has two goals and three assists. He scored a goal and notched an assist in the last meeting on February 6.
• Bryan Lerg has three goals against the River Rats this season. Lerg had a goal on February 6 and lit the lamp twice in the Falcons 6-2 win on November 15.
• Slava Trukhno has three of his 12 goals this season versus Albany. Trukhno has notched a goal in each of the three games this season.
• The Falcons’ leading goal scorer, Colton Fretter, has one tally against the River Rats this season. His goal was the first Falcons’ tally in the 7-6 overtime loss on February 6.
• Devan Dubnyk is the only Falcons goalie to face the River Rats this season. Dubnyk went 2-1 with a 3.87 goals against average.
• Jordan Eberle scored three goals in his first three games last weekend after joining the Falcons from Regina in the Western Hockey League.

River Rats Player Notes:

• Jerome Samson has two goals against the Falcons this season. His two goals came 14 seconds apart in the first minute of the River Rats overtime win on February 6.
• Drayson Bowman scored the overtime winner on February 6 for Albany and has 17 goals on the season.
• Jacob Micflikier has a pair of goals this season against the Falcons. He scored both goals in the second period of the 7-6 overtime win.
• Mike Murphy was the goalie of record for that February 6 win. Justin Peters picked up the loss in the first two games that the Falcons won.

Game Day Notebook...

Atlantic Division Roundup

The Worcester Sharks and the Portland Pirates have both clinched playoff berths. The Sharks were idle on Friday and shutout the Norfolk Admirals 2-0 last night in Norfolk and will meet the W-B/Scranton Penguins today. The Pirates earned a 2-0 shutout of their own on Friday against Providence and beat the Falcons 2-1 last night to lock up the playoff berth. The Pirates will host the Hartford Wolf Pack today.

Manchester, Lowell and Bridgeport are only separated by 5 points in the battle for the last two playoff spots in the division. Manchester beat the Devils earlier in the week and currently sit in third. Lowell beat the Falcons in a shootout on Friday and are only 2 points ahead of the Sound Tigers who are 7-2-1-0 in their last 10 games. However is the playoffs started today the 5th place team in the Atlantic Division would earn the 4th spot in the East Division because of a better record than the 4th place team in that division.

Around the League

In the East Division, the Hershey Bears have locked up the best record in the Eastern Conference. Albany, who is in Springfield today, have a seven point lead for second place. The once scorching Norfolk Admirals have faltered of late, losing 3 straight, and falling out of the playoff picture in the division. Three points ahead of the Admirals are the Penguins who are holding onto third with 81 points.

In the North Division, Lake Erie is only 4 points out of a playoff spot with 7 games left on their schedule but the Manitoba Moose have one more game left in the season and the Monsters have only gone 2-5-1-2 in their last ten games. Hamilton locked up the division crown a couple weeks ago and kept up their strong play with a pair of wins over division foe Abbotsford. The Heat are three points back of Rochester for the second spot in the division.

Out in the West Division, the Chicago Wolves have clinched a playoff berth, but not the division title yet. The Wolves have an 8 point lead of the Texas Stars with 7 games left on each of their schedules. The Stars have used an 8-2-0-0 run to leap frog over the Rockford Ice Hogs for second place in the division. Milwaukee is holding onto the last playoff spot by 5 points over the Peoria Rivermen.

Blue and Cooper Hockey: Edmonton Oilers

Last weekend the Oilers went on a 3-game winning streak. The Streak included a win over the Detroit, division leader Vancouver, and the San Jose Sharks. The wins over Detroit and San Jose were the first two NHL wins for former Falcon Devan Dubnyk. Dubnyk began his NHL career 0-8-2 for the Oilers this season. Dubnyk made 31 saves against the Red Wings and stopped 27 of 28 shots against the Sharks.

The streak game to an end on Friday night at Rexall Place when the Anaheim Ducks outlasted the Oilers for a 3-2 win. Corey Perry netted two power-play goals in the third period to give the Ducks a 3-1 lead. Marc Pouliot's power-play goal late in the period proved to not be enough to spark a miraculous come-from-behind victory for the Oilers.

Edmonton will be in action today when they meet the St. Louis Blues in St. Louis at 6 p.m. Eastern

*Reprinted by Oilers Jambalaya with permission by the Springfield Falcons AHL Hockey Club. The Springfield Falcons are a proud affiliate of the Edmonton Oilers (NHL)*

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