Marlies Battle Tough at Home
The Toronto Marlies were defeated 4-1 by the visiting Rochester Americans on Saturday. With just one contest remaining in the eight-game regular season series, the Marlies now hold a 4-3-0-0 record against the Amerks.
Justin Bailey opened the scoring for Rochester less than eight minutes into the game. Zach Redmond added another goal with under four minutes go in the first and gave Rochester a 2-0 lead at the intermission.
The two sides traded chances in the second, with the Marlies outshooting Rochester 11-9 in the middle frame, but a late goal by Daniel O’Regan with less than thirty seconds left to extend the gap to 3-0.
Less than a minute into the third, Andreas Johnsson had an answer for the Marlies as he fired a one-timer after a give-and-go play with Ben Smith to put Toronto on the board and close the gap. The goal was Johnsson’s 24th of the season and put him in sole possession of second place in league scoring. Martin Marincin had the secondary assist.
Seven minutes later, it appeared as though the Marlies had closed the gap even further as they pushed the puck past Linus Ullmark, but the goal was waved off.
O’Regan went on to score an empty net goal and Rochester finished with a 4-1 win.
Following Saturday’s game, the Marlies record moves to 39-16-1-1 while Rochester is now 28-15-9-6.
The Marlies return to action tomorrow afternoon in Belleville when they face the Senators (22-33-1-3).
Rochester: J. Bailey (6) (C. Blackwell, K. Criscuolo), Z. Redmond (11) PP (M. Tennyson, A. Nylander), D. O’Regan (8) (S. Percy, K. Porter), D. O’Regan (9) EN (Unassisted)
Goaltender: L. Ullmark (26/27)
Toronto: A. Johnsson (24) (B. Smith, M. Marincin)
Goaltender: C. Pickard (27/30)
FROM THE SCORESHEET
- Andreas Johnsson scored at 45 seconds into the third period. Johnsson has 23 points (7 goals, 16 assists) in his last 13 games.
- Ben Smith recorded the primary assist on Johnsson’s third period goal. Smith has six points (2 goals, 4 assists) in his last four games.
- Martin Marincin registered the secondary assist on Johnsson’s third period goal.
- Calvin Pickard stopped 27 of 30 shots. Pickard is now 17-8-0-1 on the season with a .924 Save Percentage and a 2.08 Goals Against Average.
- Toronto went 0-for-1 on the penalty kill and 0-for-5 on the power play.
- Rochester had a 31-27 edge in shots in all situations.
- Kyle Baun, Andreas Borgman, Adam Brooks, Colin Greening and Chris Mueller led the Marlies with three shots on goal.
- The Marlies are 29-10-1-0 against North Division opponents this season and 4-3-0-0 against the Rochester Americans. Rochester has outscored Toronto 20-19 with one game left in the series.
Goals: A. Johnsson (24)
Assists: A. Johnsson (28)
Points: A. Johnsson (52)
PPG: C. Mueller (7)
Shots: A. Johnsson (122), C. Rosen (122)
+/-: M. Marincin (+30)
PIMS: A. Nielsen (110)
On the team’s recent play:
When you’re hot everything goes your way. Bounces go your way, goals go your way, and now we’re not and nothing goes your way. We had a ton of chances today, we were all over the net but we just couldn’t get it to fall in for us. So, when it’s not going for you offensively, you can’t spot teams leads. We had a very poor start today obviously and spotted them. We let a guy get in behind us on a breakaway and we took a penalty and it’s 2-0 like that. I thought we played a pretty good second period and somehow came out of that again with them winning the period and now we are down by three. I like the fact that we scored early and played with some life and energy in the third period, that’s a good sign. The biggest difference is just that we have played from behind in all of these games. When we are winning games consistently we were leading virtually the entire game. We are a much different hockey team when we have to play from behind so obviously that is something we have to take care of. But that is just the ebbs and flows of a season, that’s the way it goes and we have to find our way out of it.
– Head coach Sheldon Keefe
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)
March 14 vs Laval – 7:00 p.m. ET
March 16 at Belleville – 7:00 p.m. ET
The Toronto Marlies and Rochester Americans will meet for the third time in just over a week when the puck drops Saturday afternoon at Ricoh Coliseum.
The two sides split a pair of games last weekend, while the Marlies hold a 4-2-0-0 head-to-head record on the season.
Leading the North Division, the Marlies (39-15-1-1) are aiming to end a two-game losing streak after falling 4-3 in overtime to Syracuse on Wednesday.
The Amerks (27-15-9-6) currently sit fourth in the North, and have won just two of their last ten contests. They are coming off of a 2-1 overtime loss to Bridgeport on Wednesday.
Special teams has been an important part of the season series, as both penalty kills have been very successful in the six games played. Toronto’s penalty kill, which has an 89.6% success rate overall this year, has allowed just one goal in 19 situations this season. Conversely, Rochester’s penalty kill has also been active in the series, stopping 17 of 18 chances.
Ben Smith is averaging a point-per-game in the season series, scoring twice and earning six points in the six games played.
Andreas Johnsson, who was named the CCM/AHL Player of the Month for February, has one goal and six points in just five games against Rochester.
For the Amerks, Alex Nylander is leading the team in scoring in games against the Marlies this year, with two goals and five points in five games played.
Saturday’s game is our annual Superhero Night, with the first 2,500 children through the gates will receive special superhero glasses.
Fans can tune in to the game 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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