Campbell Sinks Syracuse 4-3
Rookies two goals too much for the Crunch...
By Jason Kasiorek
Jeff Campbell scored twice in the second period to lead Grand Rapids to a 4-3 win over the Syracuse Crunch. The Griffins overcame a shaky start to end the Crunch's 4 game winning streak despite being outshot 42-21. Matt Ellis and Brad Norton also added goals for Grand Rapids, while Liv stopped 39 shots for the victory.
A rusty Liv gave up a couple of juicy rebounds that weren't cleared out by his defense, allowing the Crunch some quality scoring chances early. Labelle capitalized 39 seconds into the game when he lifted a rebound over Liv to make it 1-0. The Griffins blueliners were not on for most of the first, leaving Liv out to dry, the rust from a recent 11 day layoff was evident. Insana got feisty behind the net during a scrum, something that happened more and more frequently as the game went on. Ericsson got checked awkwardly and had a hard time getting up before limping off the ice and down the tunnel. Smith dropped the gloves during a scrum, getting in the face of Ben Simon, before both went off with minors. The Griffins were very feisty and ill tempered tonight. Norton scored his first of the season off the faceoff when he slip a dribbler that eked its way through traffic and past Lacosta 5-hole to tie the game at 1. Just over a minute later, Syracuse regained the lead when Pineault rifled a shot from the circle that cleany beat Liv high. Ericsson returned to the game, but was flexing his knee a lot. The Griffins trying to pick up there level of play, started to outhit the crunch. Ellis tied things up on the powerplay 10:42 into the first ripping a sweet pass from Miller from the slot, high, glove-side for his 15th of the season. Shots on goal GR 10 - Syr 12.
Campbell scored his 5th of the season just past the 7 minute mark of the period when he picked up the rebound of a Barney shot in front of the crease and drilled into the empty side of the net, stick-side on Lacosta. Miller got roughed-up and swung back setting off a big scrum complete with Bootland fropping the gloves and bloodying Simon. The Griffins managed to kill off the penalties and escape unharmed. Liv came up huge several times in the period including a stellar save on a shorthanded breakaway. Campbell notched his second of the game with time running out in the period. Ericsson unloaded a point blast that was tipped in front by Campbell to make it 4-2. Shots on goal GR 5 - Syr 15.
The Crunch made things interesting scoring shorthanded in the third to pull within one. Ericsson didn't tie up his man , Murray, allowing him to pick up a rebound in front and snap it stick side for the goal. Syracuse through everything they could at the Griffins but couldn't get the equalizer. They pulled Lacosta with 48 seconds on the clock but the Griffins held on for the win. Shots on goal GR 6 - Syr 15 For the game GR 21 - Syr 42.
Bootland/Barney - Ellis - Campbell
Tardif/Oulahen/Hussey/Bootland - Himelfarb - Brooks
Oulahen/Keller - Miller - Hussey
Bootland - Miller - Keller
Smith/Syrvet - Meech
Ericsson - Insana/Norton
Norton - Smith
Syvret - Insana
Quincey - Shoulder
Barney - Himelfarb - Campbell
Meech - Syvret
Ellis - Miller - Bootland
Ericsson - Hussey
Miller/Campbell - Bootland
Syvret/Smith - Meech
Oulahen - Ellis
Norton - Insana
Hussey - Himelfarb
3 GR Liv
2 Syr Murray
1 GR Campbell
GR came out flat and almost got walked on before digging deep and scoring enough to win this despite a solid effort by Syracuse.
I talked with Kyle Quincey briefly after the game, and he indicated he should be ready to go for Fridays game in Iowa.
Click here for the Official Scoresheet.