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Griffins Outlast Monsters 5-3
Mercurial offense explodes for five goals...
By Jason Kasiorek
February, 25th, 2011

The Grand Rapids Griffins got goals from five different players to knock down the division leading Lake Erie Monsters 5-3. The Griffins squandered a 2-0 lead at the end of the first and had to fight their way back before sealing the win with an empty netter with 20 seconds on the clock. Jamie Tardif (22), Tomas Tatar (16), Jamie Johnson (9), Frankie Pare (14) and Chris Minard (12) all tallied for Grand Rapids in the win. Netminder Jordan Pearce made 34 saves in picking up a share of the team lead with his 10th win of the season.

Tatar opened the scoring just over a minute into the game converting a centering pass by Tardif. Logan Pyett coughed up the puck at the line as the last man back, sending a monster's player in alone on a breakaway. Luckily he fanned on the shot and it went wide. A few minute later Lake Erie got another breakaway, but Pearce closed off the bottom of the net and kept it out. The Griffins capitalized on a powerplay late in the period when Meech let a shot go from the line that Tardif tipped in front as he went down. Shots on Goal: GR 11 - LE 12.

Jamie Tardif had a shorthanded breakaway and just couldn't get the shot away. Lake Erie finally got on the board early in the second on the powerplay. Pearce stopped the first shot in traffic but the rebound bounced right to Olver who jammed it past him for a goal. The monsters tied the game on back to back powerplays with Ford picking up a loos epic in front and banging it home. Straub and Bordeleau squared off at center ice in a heavyweight bout. Both of them were throwing and landing solid blows, but Straub got the best of Bordeleau and sent him to the ice. Pare had a nice chance to reagin the lead right off the face-off in the dying seconds of the period. Shots on Goal: GR 7 - LE 13.

Johnson restored the Griffins lead early in the third, converting a big shot by Janik through Grahame for a big goal. Pare made it 4-2 midway through the third when he took a nice feed from Andersson, on the fly, and snapped a shot low, glove-side on Grahame. The energy line had a good shift directly after the goal to keep the momentum. Mauldin scored with four minutes left to cut the lead to one and make the end interesting. Tatar smoked Van Der Gulik along the boards and the Monsters forward was on the ice for awhile before making his way back to the bench. Grahame was summoned to the bench with a minute and a half left on the clock in an effort to get the tying goal. Pearce made the save of the game to keep GR in the lead with time running out. Brendan Smith made a great play at the line and put the puck on net where Minard stuffed it for a 5-3 lead and the win. Shots on Goal: GR 9 - LE 12. For the Game: GR 27 - LE 37.

Minard - Emmerton - Mursak
Tatar - Filppula - Tardif
Johnson - Andersson - Pare
Straub - Raedeke - Keefe

Janik - Smith
Lashoff - Pyett
Meech - Amadio

Starter: Pearce
Backup: #34 Spratt

Kolosov - Knee Owens - Suspended Ehrhardt

Minard - Emmerton - Mursak
Pare/Johnson - Meech

Tatar - Filppula - Tardif
Johnson/Pyett - Smith

Tatar - Filppula
Pyett - Meech

Andersson - Tatar
Amadio - Janik

Mursak - Johnson


The boys tried to give this one away a couple of times, but managed to hang on long enough for the win.

Another strong outing for Pearce who has played pretty well down the stretch. He made some big saves, and a couple of the goals that got by him weren't his fault. He was most effective in shutting down the large number of breakaways and odd man rushes the Monsters got in the first period.

Logan Pyett had a brutal game, coughing up the puck several times and having quite an adventure in his own zone.

Frankie are shared some great chemistry with Jamie Johnson working the give and go several times.

Greg Amadio was feisty and aggressive and had a very strong outing. He had his long locks cut off on the ice during one of the intermissions for locks of love, and the fans ate it up. Tardif is on quite a surge as of late ad has played well enough to be considered for a call-up to the NHL.

Smith looked pretty good tonight, one of his better outings since returning from injury. He still isn't shooting the puck like he was earlier in the year, but is at least moving it well.

Official Game Sheet