Head-Down Win At Home
The Toronto Marlies won their sixth straight game on Saturday night, earning a head-down victory over the visiting Binghamton Devils on Star Wars Night.
It was the Devils first trip to Ricoh Coliseum this season and also the first since the team moved from Albany to Binghamton.
Both teams played a close, tight-checking game to start with neither side giving an inch during the opening period. Neither team was able to score in the first and shots were just 8-6 in favour of the Marlies.
The Marlies turned up the heat in the second, outshooting the Devils 13-3 in the middle frame. Andrew Nielsen was able to break the scoreless tie midway through the period, sliding into the shot and scoring after taking a nice pass out of the corner from Jeremy Bracco. Chris Mueller had the secondary assist on Nielsen’s third of the season.
The one-goal lead carried into the third before Rinat Valiev fired a blast from the blueline to make it a 2-0 game just three minutes into the final frame. Andreas Johnsson and Bracco had the assists on Valiev’s third this season.
Binghamton responded just over a minute later to cut the lead to 2-1, but the Marlies managed to hold off a late Devils attack before Frederik Gauthier scored an empty-net goal to seal the 3-1 victory.
With the win, the Marlies (36-11-0-1) extend their point streak to 15 games, going 14-0-0-1 in that span. They are now 4-0-0-0 against the Devils this season and will look to build on that in tomorrow’s rematch.
Binghamton are now 13-25-6-3.
Calvin Pickard was named the third star in tonight’s contest after making 15 saves for his sixteenth win of the season.
Johnsson extended his point streak to five games, earning 12 points (6G, 6A) in that span. Ben Smith had an assist on Gauthier’s goal and he now has a three-game point streak, totalling three points (2G, 1A). Mueller also extended his point streak to three games with an assist, giving him four points (1G, 3A) in that time.
Valiev has goals in consecutive games while Bracco’s two assists now gives him five total in his last two games.
The Marlies and Devils will meet again tomorrow as Toronto rounds out a busy three-in-three weekend. Puck drop is set for 4:00 PM and tickets are available.
Binghamton: B. Thomson (4) (J. Mandat)
Goaltender: M. Blackwood (25/27)
Toronto: A. Nielsen (3) (J. Bracco, C. Mueller), R. Valiev (3) (A. Johnsson, J. Bracco), F. Gauthier (6) EN (J. Holl, B Smith)
Goaltender: C. Pickard (15/16)
FROM THE SCORESHEET
- Andrew Nielsen opened the scoring at 9:40 of the second period. Nielsen has four points (1 goal, 3 assists) in the last three games.
- Rinat Valiev scored at 3:11 of the third period for his second consecutive game with a goal. Valiev has four points (2 goals, 2 assists) in his last four games.
- Frederik Gauthier scored the empty net goal at 18:54 of the third period.
- Jeremy Bracco recorded the primary assist on Nielsen’s second period goal and the secondary assist on Valiev’s third period goal. Bracco has five points (5 assists) in his last two games
- Chris Mueller had the secondary assist on Nielsen’s second period goal. Mueller leads the Marlies with 20 assists this season.
- Andreas Johnsson recorded the primary assist on Valiev’s game-winning goal in the third period. This was Johnsson’s 12th point (5 goals, 7 assists) in five games. Johnsson leads the Marlies in points in the series against Binghamton with five points (2 goals, 3 assists) in four games.
- Justin Holl had the primary assist on Gauthier’s empty net goal.
- Ben Smith registered the secondary assist on Gauthier empty net goal. This was Smith’s 37th point (20 goals, 17 assists) this season.
- Calvin Pickard stopped 15 of 16 shots. Pickard is now 16-5-0-0 on the season with a .931 Save Percentage and a 1.85 Goals Against Average.
- The Marlies have extended their point streak to 15 games (14-0-0-1 – 29 points).
- Toronto went 3-for-3 on the penalty kill and 0-for-5 on the power play. The Marlies have not allowed a goal in eight consecutive games on the penalty kill.
- Toronto had a 28-16 edge in shots in all situations.
- Kerby Rychel led the Marlies with five shots on goal.
- The Marlies are 26-6-0-0 against North Division opponents this season and 4-0-0-0 against the Binghamton Devils. The Marlies have outscored the Devils 14-3 with two games left in the season’s series.
Goals: A. Johnsson (22)
Assists: C. Mueller (20)
Points: A. Johnsson (41)
PPG: A. Johnsson (6), C. Mueller (6)
Shots: K. Rychel (99)
+/-: B. Smith (+28)
PIMS: A. Nielsen (100)
On tonight’s game:
I thought we did a good job of limiting chances against and not giving them much of an opportunity to build any sort of offence. That was an area that we weren’t good at yesterday so, it was much improved in that regards today for us. On the flipside clearly, we didn’t generate nearly as much offence. But credit to them, they played hard and played with a lot of structure … I like the way that we stuck with it and we had a good second period. I would like to see our power play be able to get us a goal, but the fact that we stuck with it and didn’t give them much after they scored to make it 2-1, there wasn’t a lot happening after that. For our guys playing on a back-to-back here against a rested team, we will take that effort. I think we will have to find another level going into tomorrow somehow find some legs to finish the three-in-three.
– Head coach Sheldon Keefe
February 11 vs Binghamton – 4:00 p.m. ET
February 16 at Belleville – 7:00 p.m. ET
February 17 at Laval – 7:00 p.m. ET
February 19 vs Hershey – 3:00 p.m. ET (Air Canada Centre)
February 21 vs Binghamton – 11:00 a.m. ET
The Toronto Marlies will look for a sixth straight win on Saturday when they host the Binghamton Devils for the first of back-to-back games at Ricoh Coliseum this weekend.
The Marlies set a franchise record for longest consecutive point streak last night in Belleville, as they defeated the Senators 7-4. The Marlies now have points in 14 straight games, winning 13 of those including one over the Devils.
So far this season, the two sides have met three times, with the Marlies winning all three and outscoring Binghamton 11-2.
The Marlies (35-11-0-1) currently sit first in the North Division while the Devils (13-24-6-3) hold the seventh spot.
Andreas Johnsson is producing at above a point-per-game pace against Binghamton this season, scoring two goals and adding a pair of assists in the three game so far. Johnsson enters play on a four-game point streak, recording 11 points (6G, 5A) in that span. He has earned three points in three of his last four games.
Linemate Miro Aaltonen is on a three-game point streak, combining for six points (3G, 3A) in that span.
Ben Smith has three points (2G, 1A) in three games against the Devils as does Calle Rosen (0G, 3A).
Binghamton are led offensively by Jacob MacDonald who has 14 goals and 34 points this season. He and Nick Lappin lead the Devils in points earned against the Marlies with two apiece.
Puck drop for today’s game is scheduled at 4:00 PM and tickets are still available. As part of our Star Wars Game festivities, there will be a costume contest and special Duke Icewalker bobblehead giveaway.
Fans coming to the game can enter to be upgraded to platinum seats through our Insider Seat Upgrade contest.
The game will be broadcast live on Leafs Nation Network and AHL Live.
Follow us on Twitter for pre- and post-game coverage, as well as live updates from Ricoh Coliseum.
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