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McCollum Drops 0 - 0 Match In Shootout
Second year man turns in first pro shutout in goaltender's duel...
By Jason Kasiorek
November 10th, 2010

Griffins' netminder Thomas McCollum benefitted from his team's strong defensive play, but have no doubts that he turned in one of his finest games as a pro this afternoon. He matched Milwaukee ace Mark Dekanich to turn in a 0-0 game through 65 minutes before falling in the shootout. Santorelli and Lundmark were finally able to get to him in the first and third rounds, with Captain Jamie Tardif answering for GR. The Griffins turned in one of their best efforts of the season, playing a full 65 minutes and frustrating the opposing team with their shot blocking defense.

Lots of jump in the early going- Grand Rapids really attacking the Admirals net. Milwaukee did not get a shot on goal for 10 minutes during the first, including a powerplay chance as the Griffins played a smothering defense. Derek Meech amde a slick divind save to take the puck from in front of the net and send it up ice. The Admirals tried to get physical and start a hitting game, but GR answered right back and it fell back off again. Emmerton got the puck and took off on a 2-on-1 but was held up and never really got a good scoring chance. Shots on Goal: GR 13 - Mil 7.

The second period continued a great defensive battle. the Griffins were going down and blocking shots all over the ice and not really giving Milwaukee much in the way of chances. The team avoided its normal second period let-dwon, displaying good energy and intensity. Shots on Goal: GR 6 - Mil 8.

Smith showed great patience with the puck and found a seam to go right to the net for a great scoring chance. Owen bulled his way to the net and knocked an Ad's defender into Dekanich but couldn't get a good shot off. Gr killed off a powerplay halfway through the period and then hit Coetzee coming out if the box with a breakaway pass. The rookie winger fired it high over the net. A pileup in front of Dekanich led to a scoring chance and a Milwaukee penalty. Minard feisty in front of the net, jockeying for position. Scrum behind McCollum looks like it may break into something else, but it cools down with no penalties. Turnover in the Admiral's zone and Minard sets up Tatar for a dangerous wraparound that rolls off Dekanich's pad and stays out. Andersson came out from behind the net to pounce on a Kolosov rebound in the last minute but couldn't get it in. Shots on goal: GR 11 - Mil 6.

The Griffins had the better chances in the overtime, but could not solve Dekanich. McCollum made a great stop in the dying seconds on a redirected shot on the doorstep to preserve the 0-0 tie and send the game to the shootout. Shots on goal: GR 5 - Mil 2. For the Game: GR 35 - Mil 24.

The Shootout:
Mark Santorelli was the first shooter for the Admirals and he smoked a shot five-hole on McCollum to take a 1-0 lead. Ilari Filppula countered for Grand Rapids, but snapped a shot wide of the net. Linus Klasen tried to put it between McCollum's legs again, but Thomas butterflied and stoned him. Tatar fired a week shot five-hole on Dekanich that was turned aside to preserve the 1-0 lead. Lundmark put a puck in over Thomas's shoulder, high stick-side to take a 2-0 lead, and Mursak missed the net to end the third round. McCollum stoned Van Guilder with a pad save in the 4th while the captain, Jamie Tardif scored to keep the team alive. Halischuk rang a shot off of McCollums pads, and it looked like Smith would provide the heroics yet again. The rookie defenseman made a great move to freeze Dekanich and then hit the left post after beating him cleanly, giving Milwaukee a 1-0 win.

Tatar - Johnson - Minard
Mursak - Emmerton - Filppula
Tardif - Andersson - Pare
Owens - Raedeke - Coetzee

Kolosov - Meech
Pyett - Smith
Amadio - Janik

Starter: McCollum
Backup: #1 Pearce

Lashoff - Shoulder

Tatar - Johnson - Minard
Pare - Meech

Mursak - Emmerton - Filppula
Pyett - Smith

Andersson - Tardif
Janik - Smith

Raedeke/Owens - Johnson
Amadio - Meech

Mursak - Emmerton


The Griffins were great defensively, but really didn't have very many dangerous scoring chances to show for their 35 shots.
Insert usual comments on Smith who is just a special talent and does so many things well. He was noticable most of the game at both ends of the ice and twice I thought he was going to score to win and then tie the game.

So far I have not been very impressed with Jamie Johnson, I am waiting for him to find some chemistry, but he has not looked dangerous, and doesn't even seem to be working that ahrd unlike his slumping linemate Minard who is digging and hitting and jockeying for position.

Kudos to Greg Amadio who by my count had at least 7 blocked shots today. I noticed his influence as several players sacrificed the body to block shots. It was very noticeable today.

Official Game Sheet