Tough Contest at Home
The Toronto Marlies and Rochester Americans split the weekend series after a 7-4 loss on Saturday at Ricoh Coliseum.
Following Saturday’s final, the Marlies hold a 4-2-0-0 lead in the regular season series against Rochester.
After a scoreless opening period, the Americans scored first in the middle frame to take a 1-0 lead.
The Marlies responded with three straight goals to close out the period.
Ben Smith deflected a Calle Rosen point shot before the midway point of the second to tie things up, scoring his 21st of the season. Miro Aaltonen put the Marlies ahead with a breakaway goal after being sprung off the boards by Andreas Johnsson. It marked back-to-back games with a goal for Aaltonen. With just over a minute remaining, Chris Mueller took a great pass from Kerby Rychel and made no mistake.
Five minutes into the third, Rochester closed the gap to one off a goal by Stuart Percy.
Mason Marchment reclaimed the two goal lead as he fired home the rebound off Jeremy Bracco’s initial shot with just over a minute remaining in the middle frame.
In the final six minutes, Rochester came back and took the lead, scoring three goals in three and a half minutes. They added an empty net goal and another at the buzzer to end at a 7-4 final.
The Marlies move to 39-15-0-1 with the loss but remain in the top spot of the North Division.
Rochester improves to 27-15-8-6 with the win.
The Marlies return to action on Wednesday morning for their second school day game of the season when the Syracuse Crunch come to town.
Rochester: S. Griffith (13) (C. Blackwell), S. Percy (5) (K. Porter, S. Gill), C. Blackwell (6) (K. Criscuolo), S. Malone (7) (A. Nylander, S. Percy), K. Porter (14) (S. Gill, T. Fedun), J. Bailey (4) EN (Unassisted), J. Bailey (5) (K. Porter)
Goaltender: A. Wilcox (24/28)
Toronto: B. Smith (21) (C. Rosén, M. Aaltonen), M. Aaltonen (15) (A. Johnsson), C. Mueller (13) (K. Rychel, A. Borgman), M. Marchment (8) (J. Bracco, A. Brooks)
Goaltender: C. Pickard (25/31)
FROM THE SCORESHEET
- Ben Smith scored at 8:33 of the second period. Smith has 40 points (21 goals, 19 assists) this season.
- Miro Aaltonen scored at 16:42 of the second period and earlier added the secondary assist on Smith’s second period goal. Aaltonen has 15 points (8 goals, 7 assists) in his last eight games.
- Chris Mueller scored at 18:58 of the second period. Mueller has scored in consecutive games for the first time this season. He has four points (3 goals, 1 assist) in his last two games.
- Mason Marchment scored at 8:45 of the third period. Marchment has 17 points (8 goals, 9 assists) this season.
- Calle Rosén recorded the primary assist on Smith’s second period goal. Rosén has three points (1 goal, 2 assists) in his last three games.
- Andreas Johnsson had the lone assist on Aaltonen’s second period goal. Johnsson has scored 20 points (6 goals, 14 assists) in his last 11 games.
- Kerby Rychel registered the primary assist on Mueller’s second period goal.
- Andreas Borgman recorded the secondary assist on Mueller’s second period goal. Borgman has three points (1 goal, 2 assists) in his eight games with the Marlies.
- Jeremy Bracco had the primary assist on Marchment’s third period goal. Bracco has 17 points (4 goals, 13 assists) this season.
- Adam Brooks recorded the secondary assist on Marchment’s third period goal.
- Calvin Pickard stopped 25 of 31 shots. Pickard is now 17-7-0-0 on the season with a .925 Save Percentage and a 2.04 Goals Against Average.
- Toronto went 3-for-3 on the penalty kill and 0-for-2 on the power play.
- Rochester had a 32-28 edge in shots in all situations.
- Colin Greening led the Marlies with five shots on goal.
- The Marlies are 29-9-0-0 against North Division opponents this season and 4-2-0-0 against the Rochester Americans.
- Toronto has outscored the Americans 18-16 with two games left in the series.
Goals: A. Johnsson (23)
Assists: A. Johnsson (26)
Points: A. Johnsson (49)
PPG: A. Johnsson (6), C. Mueller (6)
Shots: C. Rosen (118), K. Rychel (118)
+/-: M. Marincin (+31)
PIMS: A. Nielsen (108)
On today’s game:
I thought we played just okay. Not nearly as good a game as we had yesterday. I just thought we were a little bit slower today in all regards, from thinking to skating to playing. That said, we were in a good spot going into the third obviously and we feel good about where we were at. They scored early which we don’t like but then we got one back so that was a good sign for us. Obviously, we would have liked to have had more of that all the way through in terms of responding better. We got a little taste of our own medicine here today in terms of us being able to do that to them yesterday. We’re through over 50 games and that is not a reflection of the type of team we are now after everything that we have been through. The regular season is all about lessons and there is a good opportunity for us to take something out of this one here today in terms of not stopping to play and continuing to take care of the game and responding well to adversity. We went from a situation where we’re probably deserving to be on the power play and instead we lose one of our top players and that causes some disruption for us. But we have to able to find our way through situations like that. That’s what the regular season is for, is to take these kinds of lessons away from the game.
– Head coach Sheldon Keefe
February 28 vs Syracuse – 11:00 a.m. ET
March 3 vs Rochester – 4:00 p.m. ET
March 4 at Belleville – 3:00 p.m. ET
March 10 vs Providence – 4:00 p.m. ET
March 12 vs Laval – 3:00 p.m. ET (Air Canada Centre)
The Toronto Marlies and Rochester Americans will meet for the second straight time Saturday afternoon in the back half of this weekend-s home-and-home.
In last night’s game, the Marlies charged back in the third period to score three straight goals in 5-3 come-from-behind victory.
That win was the fourth over the Amerks this season in five meetings so far. Today’s game will be the sixth of eight meetings between the two sides.
The Marlies (39-14-0-1) lead the North Division coming into today’s game and are 29-8-0-0 against divisional opponents.
Rochester (26-15-8-6) have now only won one of their last ten games.
With two assists in last night’s game, Andreas Johnsson has now earned five points (1G, 4A) in four games against Rochester this season while Ben Smith has a goal and four assists in five matchups with the Amerks.
At the other end, Seth Griffith leads the Americans with five points in five games this season.
Puck drop is set for 4:00 and the Marlies will look to win their fourth straight game during the season series.
Today’s game is our first ever Country Night. There will be a live intermission performance by The Washboard Union and the first 5,000 fans will receive a Marlies cowboy hat.
Very limited tickets are available. The game can be seen on Leafs Nation Network and AHL Live.
Follow us on Twitter for pre- and post-game coverage, including live updates from Ricoh Coliseum.
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