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GR Rally Falls Short 3-4
Griffins offense comes alive too late to complete comeback...
By Jason Kasiorek

Grand Rapids has made a habit out of falling behind early and then storming back for a win. This game started out according to the normal script, but when the Griffins reached back, they found they didn't have enough left to dig out of a 4-1 hole against the visiting Rockford IceHogs. Netminder Thomas McCollum 29 shots, but did not look as sharp as usual, something that could be said for a lot of the team tonight. Frankie Pare led the way offensively with 2 assists, while Evan McGrath, Mattias Ritola and Tomas Tatar scored for the home team. Tatar has scored in three straight games, and has notched seven points in the last four.

Early in the period, Tatar flubbed on a clearing attempt and Rockford got control deep in the Grand Rapids zone. MacArthur made the Griffins pay the price, giving the IceHogs a 1-0 lead two and a half minutes in. Williams had a good chance to tie things up later in the period when he ripped a shorthanded chance off the post and into the corner. Evan McGrath eventually evened things up late in the period when he was set up by Pare in the slot and went against the grain rifling a shot over Richards off the post, and into the net. Shots on Goal: GR 11 - Rock 14.

Rockford regained the lead halfway through the second on a goal by Greentree, finishing off a pretty three on two break. The Griffins still didn't have much jump, but started to bare down with a lot of end to end action. Late in the period they were creating pressure in the Rockford end, cycling the puck for several minutes and generating several good scoring chances. Finally the IceHogs cleared and Akim Aliu pounced on a loose puck and banked it in off McCollum to make it 3-1. Shots on Goal: GR 10 - Rock 11.

Rockford continued to run up the score early in the third. MacArthur snagged an errant pass and fed Davis for a goal that McCollum would probably like back to make it 4-1. Grand Rapids answered two minutes later to cut the lead to two. Kindl's point shot hit Richards and several Griffins converged on the rebound, taking whacks at it until Ritola chipped it over the goalie and into the back of the cage. Six minutes later, Tatar cut the lead to one finishing off a great play by Mursak and Emmerton.The rookie winger come late and buried the puck for a pretty goal. McCollum went to the bench with 1:02 on the clock but the Griffins couldn't get set up up to generate a scoring chance. Shots on Goal: GR 9 - Rock 8. For the Game: GR 30 - Rock 33.

Walsh - Emmerton - Williams
Vigilante - Newbury - Tardif
Tatar - Rismiller - Mursak
Ritola - McGrath - Pare

3rd Period:
Rissmiller/Williams - Newbury - Pare
Tatar - Emmerton - Mursak
Ritola - McGrath - Williams
Vigilante - Rissmiller - Tardif

Kolosov - Delmore
Janik - Kindl
Crosty - Pyett

Starter: McCollum
Backup: Larsson


Ritola - McGrath - Pare
Williams - Kindl

Tatar - Rissmiller - Mursak
Delmore - Williams

Rissmiller - Mursak
Janik - Kindl

Tardif - Newbury
Kolosov - Delmore

Vigilante - Newbury

Three Stars:
3 MacArthur - Rockford
2 Pare - GR
1 Davis - Rockford


The Griffins just didn't look like they were on top of their game. Give Rockford credit for playing a good game.

Logan Pyett continues to look comfortable with the puck, and really played with a chip on his shoulder in this game. Late in the third he was feisty and battling around the net and in the corner. And he didn't take a penalty doing it.

Pare had a couple of very good shifts in the second period and was very involved in the offense. He is playing more aggressive, and it is no coincidence the points are starting to accumulate. Now he just has to get the first goal of the season and get the monkey off his back.

Tardif had a couple of good chances and was all hustle as usual.

Tatar looks more confident every game. he had several quality scoring chances, and since he passed the magic number of games to return to junior, he has played at a much higher level.

Sergei Kolosov had a good night, playing solid in his own end, and even jumping up in the play a few times.

McCollum played well enough to win, but was not as sharp as he had been playing.

Official Game Sheet