Griffins Clip Cleveland 4-2|
Lashoff moves into second in all-times game played...
By Jason Kasiorek
January 5th, 2018
The Grand Rapids Griffins continued their recent hot streak, taking a 4-2 win over the hapless Cleveland Monsters. The Griffins got goals from 4 different players to push their record to 9-1-0-1 in their last 11 games. Ben Street (6) opened the scoring and was followed by Filip Hronek (4) Dominic Turgeon (9) and Eric Tangradi (12). Jared Coreau looked sharp in the win, though he was not tested much, stopping 18 of 20 shots. Bryan Lashoff moved into second place behind Travis Richards for games played with the Griffins, with 366, passing Mitch Callahan.
Grand Rapids came out a little flat, but things changed quickly as the Griffins got on the board first. Ben Street with speed, shot up the middle and ripped a long shot in off the post for an early 1-0 lead. After that goal the Griffins picked up the pace and really began pressuring the Monsters. Brian Lashoff with a pop at a loose pick next to the net and then another chance by Matt Puempel but Kivlenieks came up big. Midway through the period, Broadburst picked up an errant puck between the circles and roofed a shot in over Coreau to knot the score at one each. Delayed penalty to Cleveland but GR couldn’t generate any shots despite a long possession. On the ensuing powerplay, Filip Hronek dazzled with great puck movement and heads up passing. He ended up getting the puck back in the circle and stroked it into the net low stick side for a 3-1 lead. Shots on goal: GR 12 - Cle 7.
The griffins went up 3-1 early in the second when Campbell stole the puck and fed Turgeon. Turgeon split the D and went in on Kivlenieks and sniped the puck in off the post and crossbar for his 9th of the season. Couple of big blasts from the point by Dylan McIlrath that gave the Monsters' netminder trouble. Grand Rapids with a power play midway through the period. Cory Elkins was setup right in front by Dominik Shine but fired it over the net. Shine with a chance from the slot that the goaltender just got a piece of. Big hit by Renouf along the boards and then he sent the puck back up ice..
Shots on goal: GR 10 - Cle 5.
Elkins blocked a shot off his ankle and had a hard time hobbling to the bench. he was able to walk it off and didn't miss a shift. Renouf carried the puck up ice, and then won a battle at the line to get it in. Svechnikov got tired of being cross checked in the back in front of the net and took a swing at Gaunce. The to of them ended up grappling for a few minutes until the officials intervened. The Griffins penalty killers killed off the first powerplay of the night for Cleveland, and didn't allow a shot on goals for the full two minutes. Puempel was sprung for a chance and was tackled by Scott who then just sat on top of him long after the whistle. Puempel took exception and a scuffle broke out. Kivlenieks was summoned to the bench with four minutes remaining for an extra attacker. The Griffins did a great job of breaking up passes and trying for the empty net. Eventually Eric Tangradi fired a long shot into the net for a 4-1 lead. Tangradi was rewarded for his efforts by being attacked by Gaunce in front of the players bench. Tangradi wrestled back, and both were sent off with four minute penalties. Carlsson walked into the circle and wristed a shot past a screened Coreau but the Griffins managed to hold on for a 4-2 win. Shots on goal: GR 10 - Cle 8. For the game: GR 32 - Cle 20.
#28 Lorito - #23 Turgeon - #45 Campbell
#26 Tangradi - #10 Street - #73 Puempel
#77 Svechnikov - #25 Holmstrom - #55 Ford
#15 Elson - #47 Elkins - #65 Shine
#18 Lashoff - #13 Hronek
#20 Renouf - #5 Russo
#2 Hicketts- #52 McIlrath
Starter: #31 Coreau
Backup: #30 McCollum
#9 Vili Saarijarvi
Tangradi -Street - Lorito
Puempel - Hronek
Holmstrom - Ford - Svechnikov
Hicketts - Russo
Turgeon - Street/Campbell
Lashoff - McIlrath
Elkins - Ford
Hicketts - Renouf
Filip Hronek played a great game and was very noticeable for the right reasons. He led the team with five shots on goal and played very strong in all three zones. The rookie rearguard continues to shine and is playing above expectations.
Dan Renouf had a standout game as well. He was involved physically with some big hits, he led the rush a few times and made some good decisions in the offensive zone. But he also made a couple of top shelf defensive plays as well.
Robbie Russo was much more aggressive tonight, both with the puck, but also physically, playing the body and seeking out contact. While I won't say he had a good game, I can see he didn't have a bad game, the first time in quite awhile I have been able to say that.
The Griffins defense as a whole was very involved tonight, much more so than usual, jumping up in the play and joining the offense.