Tag Archives: Ken Gernander

BLANKED – AGAIN

Connecticut Whale      VERSUS      Wilkes Barre

(We return with our regular coverage starting tonight)

Brian RingBY: Brian Ring

Hartford, CT, March 30, 2012 – The Connecticut Whale were defeated by the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, 3-0, Friday night at the XL Center.  Penguins goaltender Scott Munroe blanked the Whale with a 32-save performance, the fourth-straight defeat for the Whale (0-3-1-0).

The Penguins would strike fast and furious in the first period, tallying three goals in a span of 2:12 to get the jump on the Whale for good.

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HAWK’S VIEW – MOSES ARRIVES IN THE LAND WITH PROMISE

Bob CrawfordBY: Bob Crawford, Voice of the CT Whale

Among the three most recent additions to the Whale roster, two, forward Andrew Yogan and defenseman Peter Ceresnak, were both Ranger draft picks and had been on the organization’s radar screen for at least a year.  The other, winger Steve Moses, though, was somewhat of an unknown commodity when he joined the Whale last week.

Early reviews are quite positive, however, for Moses, a Leominster, MA native who suited up for his first two pro games this past Saturday against Providence and Sunday at Bridgeport, after finishing a four-year career at the University of New Hampshire.

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SPECIAL TEAMS COST WHALE STANDINGS POINT

Connecticut-Whale_thumb_thumb_thumb_       VERSUS      Bridgeport

(We apologize as we’re unavailable for our normal direct CTWhale coverage for the next couple of games due to scheduling conflicts…)

Brian-Ring_thumbBY: Brian Ring

The Connecticut Whale were defeated by the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, 4-3 in overtime, Sunday afternoon at the Webster Bank Arena. Matt Donovan scored the game-winning goal for Bridgeport with two seconds left in overtime with the Sound Tigers on the power-play.

Andre Deveaux, Mike Vernace and Tommy Grant each scored for Connecticut.

“It’s obviously getting a little redundant, pretty frustrating to come in after games and say your margin of error is going to be so slim and they’re going to be one-goal games, you’ve got to do a little better job securing the puck,” said Whale head coach Ken Gernander.

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WHALE BRUIN TROUBLE

Connecticut-Whale_thumb_thumb_thumb_      VERSUS      Providence

(We apologize as we’re unavailable for our normal direct CTWhale coverage for the next couple of games due to scheduling conflicts…)

Brian RingBY:  Brian Ring

The Connecticut Whale were defeated by the Providence Bruins, 3-2, Saturday night at the XL Center before a crowd of 5,794. Craig Cunningham had a goal and an assist and Josh Hennessy had two assists to lead the Bruins in scoring, with Zach Trotman providing the game-winner.

Jonathan Audy-Marchessault and Kris Newbury both scored and had an assist for Connecticut, which lost its fourth straight game to the Bruins.

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DESPERATE PIRATES FILET WHALE

Connecticut-Whale_thumb_thumb_thumb_      VERSUS      Portland

Bruce-Berlet_thumb1BY: Bruce Berlet

The Portland Pirates, involved in a wild, multi-team chase for the final Eastern Conference playoff spots, parlayed goals from four different players and 29 saves from Peter Mannino into a 4-1 victory Friday over the Whale at the XL Center.

“If there was a loose-puck race, more times than not, they came up with it,” Whale head coach Ken Gernander said. “I thought we had some poor decisions where we turned pucks over and paid the price. A couple of times we go to check, they move the puck and we don’t maintain our defensive position and allow them to get the rebound.”

The victory moved the Pirates (30-28-3-4) into a tie for 10th place with Worcester and Albany with 67 points, one behind Syracuse and Springfield, which each won Friday night and share the eighth and final playoff berth. Meanwhile, the Whale (33-22-5-5) saw their lead in the Northeast Division sliced to three points over the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, who lost 3-2 in a shootout at Springfield. The Whale had been 14-5-1-0 in their previous 20 games and were an AHL-best 19-6-2-4 at home, including the three wins over the Pirates.

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SPOTLIGHT: TOMMY GRANT

Bruce BerletBY: Bruce Berlet

Large green letters on a bed sheet at the XL Center on Sunday read: Tommy 10 Terrific.

Terrific, indeed.

For most of the season, Tommy Grant, who wears No. 10, has been part of the Connecticut Whale’s “energy line” with another second-year pro, center Kelsey Tessier, and rookie wing Scott Tanski. Whenever the Whale needed a lift, coach Ken Gernander didn’t hesitate to send out the gritty, inexperienced trio, as they’re all mature beyond their years.

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REDEMPTION

Connecticut-Whale_thumb_thumb_thumb_      VERSUS     Portland

(I feel like I need to apologize to the readers of Howlings. I haven’t written my normal stories for the games on Friday and last night. This is as some of you may or may not know, started as a hobby for me but has progressed to the point where it has become a non-paying — and actually I pay quite a bit of money for all of it — part-time job. Well the job that does pay me, my employment agency Crossroads Consulting, has had an explosion of business the past three days and frankly it was difficult to find the time to even get to the games at all. I am also having incredible computer problems that are messing up both “jobs” so I haven’t had the time to dedicate to this as I should. So for that I apologize. We’ll get it right again this coming week…once again, I apologize.)

Bruce BerletBY: Bruce Berlet

After being shut out by the Springfield Falcons at home for the first time in 15 seasons on Saturday night, Connecticut Whale coach Ken Gernander almost completely shuffled his deck Sunday afternoon.

Gernander changed all four lines, two of the three defensive pairings and started Cam Talbot in goal for the first time in 11 games since Feb. 19.

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THE ROAD AHEAD

Connecticut-Whale_thumb_thumb_thumb_      VERSUS    Springfield Falcons

The Connecticut Whale currently sit in the third position in the AHL standings. How they’re doing that is a testament to the character of this team, because based upon the way they played at the XL Center Saturday night in a 3-0 loss to the Springfield Falcons, a team fighting just to make it into the post-season, you’d have thought it was the other way around.

“We didn’t give much, I thought and that’s disappointing.  We never really got anything going,” team captain Wade Redden said in his post game assessment. “We had a couple power plays in the first (period) that we didn’t do anything on, didn’t get a spark.

“You guard against (emotional let downs)…it just seemed like we were flat. We had a big win (Friday) night, we just weren’t making plays. We were just a little slower to pucks than them. They just played harder than us…We just put this behind us and get ready for tomorrow.”

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WHEN YOU’RE HOT, YOU’RE HOT

Connecticut-Whale_thumb_thumb_thumb_      VERSUS     Bridgeport

Bruce BerletBY: Bruce Berlet

Despite numerous injuries and call-ups, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers had proven to be a bugaboo for the Connecticut Whale.

The Sound Tigers were 5-1-1-1 in the first eight meetings with their intrastate rival, though the Whale had lost twice in overtime and once in a shootout.

But for the second straight Friday night, the Whale prevailed thanks to another stellar performance by goalie Chad Johnson, who had 38 saves in a 3-2 victory after two quick visits to the New York Rangers this week as a backup to Martin Biron filling in for the ailing Henrik Lundqvist.

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SPOTLIGHT: BATTLE LINES DRAWN IN THE ICE

Bruce BerletBy: Bruce Berlet

Connecticut’s two AHL entries have reached a share of first place in the Northeast Division from quite different directions, yet neither is anywhere near clinching a playoff berth, something both coaches and former Hartford Wolf Pack teammates have espoused on numerous occasions.

The Bridgeport Sound Tigers hold a tie-breaker lead over the Connecticut Whale, making their ninth of 10 meetings in the GEICO Connecticut Cup on Friday night at the XL Center that much more significant. The Sound Tigers (32-20-3-5) were in the division cellar after a 2-10-0-1 slide from Thanksgiving to the end of 2011, but a stunning 20-2-0-2 run vaulted them into first place before they lost three straight last weekend for the first time this season, the first two via shootouts, starting against the Whale.

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