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Tough Battle in Game 2

SCORING SUMMARY

Toronto:
A. Johnsson (3) (J. Holl), Cal O’Reilly (1) PP (C. Grundström, S. Griffith) K. Kapanen (1) PP (T. Dermott) C. Grundström (1) (A. Nielsen, S. Griffith), S. Griffith (1) (C. Greening)
Goaltender: K. Kaskisuo 13/18 A. Bibeau 15/17

Syracuse:
C. Conacher (2) SH (B. Froese, B. Thomas), M Bournival (1) (C. Conacher, Y. Gourde), M. Peca (1) (M. Bournival, A. Erne), T. McGinn (3) PP (B. Froese, M. Taormina), J. Vermin (2) (D. Walcott, K. Lynch), M. Peca (2) (E. Condra, T. McGinn), C. Conacher (3) SH (Y. Gourde), J. Vermin (3) EN (D. Masin, Y. Gourde)
Goaltender: M. McKenna 14/19

FROM THE SCORESHEET

·         Andreas Johnsson put the Marlies on the board with his team leading third goal of the postseason at 15:15 of the first period. Johnsson led the Marlies during the regular season with 20 goals.
·         Cal O’Reilly scored his first as a Marlie at 8:15 of the second period. O’Reilly has two points in the postseason and registered 50 points (9 goals, 41 assists) in 62 regular season games.
·         Kasperi Kapanen registered his first of the postseason with a power play goal at 12:00 of the second period. Kapanen has three points through four games in the playoffs and was a point per game (18 goals, 25 assists) with the Marlies during the regular season.
·         Carl Grundström picked up a goal and an assist in his first game with the Marlies. Taken 57th overall in the second round of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft by the Toronto Maple Leafs, Grundström played 45 games with Frolunda (SweHL) this season, registering 20 points (14 goals, 6 assists).
·         Seth Griffith scored his first of the postseason at 18:56 of the third period and added an assist earlier in the period.
·         Justin Holl picked up his team leading sixth assist of the postseason. Holl leads the team in scoring with seven points thought six games.
·         Travis Dermott and Andrew Nielsen both collected an assist tonight.

NOTABLES

·         The Marlies hold a 51-45 all-time record in the postseason (24-24 on the road).
·         Toronto went 7-for-8 on the penalty kill and 3-for-7 on the power play.
·         Syracuse outshot Toronto 36 to 19.
·         Colin Greening led the Marlies with three shots on goal.

MARLIES SCORING LEADERS

·         Points: Justin Holl (7)
·         Goals: Andreas Johnsson (3)
·         Assists: Justin Holl (6)
·         Shots: Brendan Leipsic (19)
·         +/-: Justin Holl (+5)
·         PIM: Andrew Nielsen (20)

CAREER PLAYOFF LEADERS

·         Games: Cal O’Reilly (72), Andrew Campbell (50), Rich Clune (27)
·         Points: Cal O’Reilly (45), Seth Griffith (21), Justin Holl (10)
·         Goals: Cal O’Reilly (12), Seth Griffith (8), Brendan Leipsic (5)
·         Assists: Cal O’Reilly (33), Seth Griffith (14), Justin Holl (10)

COACHES QUOTES

On their speed: We have some time here now to really get a grasp of what they are doing well and what we can do better. We thought we had a good handle on it coming in to today’s game but clearly that’s not the case. As coaches, we’ve got to continue to work and be a whole lot better.  There’s a lot of skill, a lot of speed all through their lineup and we knew that coming in and we’ve fed into it and a lot of its because we haven’t made them defend. If you don’t make them defend then they’re just playing in transition all the time and you can’t slow them down. We fed right into it so that’s clearly and area we’ll have to look at and get better at, so clearly a big couple of days for the coaching staff.

On Grundström’s debut: I thought that he played with a lot of poise, I’ll have to really watch the game back and see some of the small details of his game. I thought when he got the puck, he was one guy that the game seems to slow down a bit around him. We didn’t have a lot of guys playing with poise so for him to be able to step into his first game and have that type of confidence with the puck was encouraging to see.


Game Preview

It’s a short turnaround for the Marlies following Friday night’s close 3-1 loss to Syracuse as they face off again just twenty-four hours later in Game 2.

The Marlies got off to a good start in the opening game as Andreas Johnsson scored his second of the playoffs less than two minutes into the game. Andrew Nielsen and Trevor Moore each picked up their first assists of the postseason on the goal.

Kasimir Kaskisuo turned in a strong performance in net, stopping 26 shots including a number of big saves.

After losing Game 1, the Marlies now find themselves in the same position they were in the first round against Albany.

“We’ve got to regroup here, find our game, much like we did after game one in Albany, recognize where we can get better” said head coach Sheldon Keefe following last night’s game. “We know we can be a whole lot better and I think we will be tomorrow.”

One key for the Marlies will be capitalizing on power play opportunities, especially given Syracuse had the most penalty minutes in the league during the regular season. The Marlies power play unit was the best in the Eastern Conference during the regular season.

“When you get your opportunities, you’ve got to make them count and we didn’t do that,” Keefe said after the Marlies went 0-for-4 on the man advantage.

Puck drop for Game 2 is scheduled for 7:00 pm and you can catch all the action live on Leafs TV and AHL Live. Join the conversation online by following the Marlies on Twitter and tuning in to our #MarliesLive chats.

The Marlies return home for Games 3 & 4 on Tuesday and Wednesday. Tickets are still available online or by calling 416-597-PUCK (7825).

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