The Streak Is Over - Griffins Fall To Rochester 3-1
Pyett's late tally breaks shutout bid...
By Jason Kasiorek
The story of tonight's games looked to be written the same as the last nine right up until the ending chapter. Grand Rapids found itself down by a pair of goals and then fired up it's game, dominating play for large parts of the second half. Unfortunately Alexander Salak had something to say about the come from behind rally which did not happen. Logan Pyett scored the Griffins lone goal with 42 seconds left in the game to break the shutout, but that would be all they could muster despite putting 34 shots on the Rochester net.
Axelsson set up Tardif in front with a beauty play but Salak made the save, something we would see a lot of tonight. Matt Duffy scored his first goal of the season on the powerplay for Rochester giving them a 1-0 lead midway through the first. Less than three minutes later, another Griffins penalty leads to another powerplay goal with Johnson cashing in on a feed from York to make it 2-0. Tatar hit Williams with a beautiful lead pass, and as he shot in alone on Salak, the netminder dropped his stick but Williams fired it over the net. Shots on Goal: GR 7 - Roc 7.
Grand Rapids turned on the offense, peppering Salak with shots to start the period. Emmerton got smoked on a breakaway but no penalty was called. McCollum came out to play a shot that was redirected and dipped into the net behind him to make it 3-0. Crosty and Bonneau dropped the gloves off the next faceoff and squared off. Crosty landed several haymakers early, then they both landed some before Crosty got in a devastating uppercut and another flurry of blows. Grand Rapids was in total control of the play for most of the period, but could not get anything past Salak. Shots on Goal: GR 16 - Roc 8.
Fraser switched up the lines in the 3rd to try and get something going . Rochester did a great job of blocking shots and using their speed to take away the shooting and passing lanes. Most of Grand Rapids good chances came off the rush or broken plays, very little traffic in front of the net or second chances. The Griffins were in control at both ends, evident when Rochester didn't get one shot on goal during a late powerplay. McCollum to the bench with 1 minute left in the game for the extra attacker. Pyett flicked a wrister from the circle that finally beat Salak high, stick side to break the shutout. Shots on Goal: GR 11 - Roc 5.
Axelsson - McGrath - Tardif
Ritola - Newbury - Mursak
Tatar - Rismiller - Williams
Vigilante - Emmerton - Pare
Ritola - Rissmiller - Pare
Tatar - McGrath - Mursak
Vigilante - Newbury - Williams
Axelsson - Emmerton - Tardif
Kolosov - Kindl
Crosty - Pyett
Janik - Delmore
Backup: #36 Centomo
Ritola - Newbury - Tardif/Mursak
Williams - Kindl
Axelsson - McGrath/Emmerton - Tardif
Kindl/Janik - Delmore
McGrath - Newbury - Tardif
Williams - Delmore
Tatar - Newbury - Mursak
Kindl - Pyett
Ritola - Newbury
Janik/Crosty - Delmore
Rissmiller - Williams
Kolosov/Pyett - Kindl
Emmerton - Vigilante
3 Dusty - Rochester
2 Johnson - Rochester
1 Salak - Rochester
The guys ran into a hot goaltender and ran out of the magic to come back in the second half despite a strong effort.
Logan Pyett had a good game and was very aggressive. He did a good job of getting the puck to the net, and played more physical than normal as well.
Cory Emmerton really has taken off the last few weeks, and is really making a strong case to be the next call-up. His speed has improved greatly as has his competitiveness and intensity.
Mursak had another strong game breaking up plays and creating offense. It looks like this is what we can expect of him this season as his game has reached a new level.
Ritola was very noticeable with some incredible work in his own end. He just can't seem to convert any of the great chances he creates.
Andy Delmore has been about the opposite of what was expected so far this season. He has been pretty strong defensively, but has not really produced much offense, especially on the powerplay which has traditionally been his strong point. Hopefully he can pick it up in that regard.
Tomas Tatar seemed to be much more relaxed and involved tonight. He had some good chances and showed off some great one on one moves with the puck. It was also nice to see him throw his weight around a little bit.
Janik had a rough night spending a lot of time in the box for hooking and interference penalties. Captain Jamie Tardif may not be the most talented player on the team, but he always gives 100%. Tonight he had so many chances directly created by his unwillingness to give up on a play, and just put the puck on the net. He had a team high 8 shots on goal.