Tag Archives: Scott Munroe

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.

Continue reading

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WHALE GUTS…

Connecticut Whale      VERSUS       Wilkes Barre

After watching the Connecticut Whale work through 65 minutes of scoreless, defensive hockey and then score three times out of four in the shoot-out for a 1-0 victory over the Wilkes-Barre-Scranton Penguins Sunday night, the only way to describe it, especially this early in the hockey season is to notice that this group of young men have “guts.”

In fact after watching the contest before 4,133 at the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza what came to mind was the film “Airplane II” and the late great Lloyd Bridges character, Steve McCroskey. To paraphrase his line in the film, he says drunkenly, “Gentlemen, I don’t find it easy to talk at a time like this, but I got to say something about (Those guys out) there, and I can sum it all up in just one word: courage…dedication, daring, pride, pluck, spirit, grit, mettle, and G-U-T-S, *guts*. Why, (The Connecticut Whale bench’s) got more guts in (their collective) little finger(s) than most of us have in our large intestine, including the colon.”

All joking aside, it was that kind of a game. Chad Johnson made his first start of the 2011-2012 season with one of his best performances in quite a long time with a masterpiece from start-to-finish. Not only did he keep the puck out of the Whale net, he was dominant in stopping three-of-five Penguin shooters which allowed his teammates the ability to focus on their jobs and they came through with three of four scoring goals in the skills competition giving the Rangers’ top affiliate got their first win of the season. Continue reading

ONE FOR THE AGES

Hartford Wolf Pack VERSUS Bridgeport Sound Tigers
The next time NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, or AHL Commissioner Dave Andrews needs to explain to someone why hockey is the greatest sport that there is, they won’t have to do anything other than show them a tape of Saturday night’s Bridgeport and Hartford battle at the XL Center  in which the Wolf Pack prevailed on a late Bobby Sanguinetti goal, 4-3 in front of 6,921 exuberant fans.

This game had something for everyone. There were fights, big hits great plays on both sides of the puck, a penalty shot, great saves, non-stop action, a come from behind victory that was capped by a thrilling finish. Who could ask for more for their entertainment dollar.

It was a must win game for the home team as they entered the match trailing their guests by nine points for the final playoff spot in the conference. A loss and they would most certainly be making arrangements for early tee times. Even with the victory, the Pack are still up against the wall and must continue to win when they visit Portland to do battle with the playoff bound Pirates.

Sangs game winner They wouldn’t be talking about a big game Sunday had not former first round draft pick, Sanguinetti not put on his finest move since donning the Hartford sweater two seasons ago. The right hander unloaded a shot from the left point that missed the net entirely. The puck went around to the right wing side and was retrieved by Corey Locke. The AHL’s third leading scorer would then add to his season assist stat when he heard the Pack defenseman calling for the puck again back on the left side. Locke made the pass that the New Jersey native recovered along the left boards. “I just missed the net on my first try,” Sanguinetti said. “But I saw a lane and Corey made a nice play over to me.” He then simply side-stepped Bridgeport center Michael Haley and defenseman Mark Wotten bit on it as well and took themselves out of the play. “I put on a pump-fake on them, they bit and I was just looking for a hole. He (starting Bridgeport goaltender Scott Munroe) was moving side-to-side and I beat him to the far right side.” (see photo – left). The goal was the only tally by either team in the third frame and came with just 3:20 remaining.

Well, that’s not exactly true.

The Pack had another goal in the period, what would have been Donald Brashear’s first, but after Jared Nightingale put a hard hit on Jean Bourbeau along the boards. Bourbeau, in just his second gain after being recalled from CHL’s Odessa Jackalopes kept after Nightingale to fight. When the gloves dropped, referee Chris Brown was forced to blow the whistle just seconds before Brashear’s guided missile into the net and negated the marker. “(Bourbeau) kept asking me and I was just tempted. I took a peek over to the bench to see if (Assistant Coach) J.J. (Daigneault)  was going to tell me ‘no’ or ‘yes’ and then I just went at it.” Nightingale said. “The most important thing at the end of the day is that we’re happy that we and won the game.”

“(Nightingale’s) a physical player,” Head Coach Ken Gernander said. “He gets in a tussle or a dust up with a guy, he doesn’t know what’s going on up ice.  It was unfortunate that it negated Brash’s goal, but the important thing is we got the win.”

None of the heroics would have been possible had Chad Johnson (25 saves, 19-16-2) had not kept his teammates in the contest all game long. With just 5:57 left in the game Brendan Witt found Mike Radja all alone in front of the Pack net. Johnson slid across and stonewalled the Sound Tiger centerman. Earlier in the period, Johnson stopped Haley on a great scoring chance at 6:39 and just prior stopped Trevor Smith off a two-on-one rush.

“That’s been a big part of things lately is the big save,” Gernander said. “We’re not giving up volumes and volumes of shots where he’s under constant pressure but he’s had few key saves throughout the course of the last couple of games here and that’s been pretty important for us.”

The Wolf Pack came out of the gates on a mission and it showed. There was LOTS of hard hitting by both sides, but you could feel the Pack starting to make headway and getting more play in the offensive zone.

At 6:41 the hard work paid a dividend.

Sorayal goal celebrationJustin Soryal broke a 16 game scoreless drought when he dove to connect with a Derek Couture pass from the right side to the left. Munroe slowed the puck as it went under him but it seemed to just pop out the other side of him and replays showed that the puck crossed the goal line by about 2 or 3 inches max. Soryal was embraced by his teammates who recognized the effort of the Pack forward on the play. The goal came at 6:11.

This was a physical game and Bridgeport loves to play the game that way. Pascal Morency who loves to push players buttons, pushed the button of the wrong player when he tried to cheap shot and sucker punched Brashear. The Morency plays deadcareer enforcer who’s 6’3” and 237 pounds didn’t feel much of a threat from the 5’10” 196 pound Montreal native. Brashear then gave Morency a one shot smack to the face with his gloves still on and laid the right winger out. Morency stayed down on the ice for a long time, and someone from off the Pack bench earned an extra minor penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct when he threw a water bottle out on to the ice and it hit Morency in the side. It was all a big act as Morency didn’t even miss a shift and went right back to his antics.

With 3:16 left in the first and the Pack on a power play with Wotten in the box for Unsportsmanlike Conduct, a turnover in the offensive zone along the left wing boards wound up on the stick of Greg Mauldin. Haskins tripped up The Tigers’ left wing fed the puck out quickly to Tyler Haskins who had a clean breakaway. Kris Newbury skated back hard and took the legs right out from under him. Brown called a penalty shot.

On the ensuing penalty shot, Haskins came in with speed and broke to Johnson’s right deked and backhanded it over the Pack netminder’s blocker side for the shorthanded goal.Penalty Shot

The Pack outshot the Tigers 15-8 in the first period.

The energy level intensified in the second period. Given the Pack have the worst penalty kill in the American League, any time the Pack wind up shorthanded it’s going to be a “keep-your-fingers-crossed” sort of adventure. Hartford stifled Bridgeport visitors on their first to man advantages, but their third one cost them and broke the stalemate.

With Ryan Garlock in the penalty box on a tripping call at 7:37, the Sound Tigers power play unit went to work.

Johnson reacts to Smith's goalBridgeport worked the puck along the outside perimeter. Brett Motherwell gave the puck to Trevor Smith at the right wing point. Smith moved out to the middle of the ice and from just inside the blue line and with lots of traffic in front of Johnson fired a shot that the Pack goaltender never saw and the visiting team had the lead. The goal was Smith’s 20th if the season.

Just a 1:04 Bridgeport would double their lead when Dustin Friesen shot the puck from the right wing side and it hit Nigel Williams stick en route to the net and it lifted into the air and knuckled over Johnson and it was 3-1. The goal was Friesen’s first since signing a PTO after playing most of the season in the East Coast League with Idaho.

But then came the turning point of the game.

Radja was in the penalty box for a delay of game call at 12:51.

With 6:38 to go in the period, and 31 seconds later, on yet another breakaway opportunity, Johnson closed the door on Haskins and kept his team within two.

“It takes guys making big plays, whether it be somebody finishes a big hit rouses the bench or a goal by somebody. Big plays are important in terms of building momentum.” The Pack head coach stated.

“I’ve been working a lot on breakaways after practice because it’s an important skill to have, especially down the stretch,” Johnson said. “I’m starting to get a good feel on the breakaways, whether it’s in the game or in shootouts. They got kind of a lucky bounce on their third goal, but I’ve just been trying to keep the team in the game and do what I have to do.”

21 seconds later, Newbury put a puck on net from the right wing side. Dale Weise occupied Munroe and the defenseman covering, Jon Gleed. But when the netminder could not cleanly swallow it, it left the puck loose along the right wing side. Byers came in, as heByers goal often does, to clean up the porch, and that what he did, going backhand to forehand and putting the puck in net past the bewildered Munroe.

“Newbury had lots of time up top all game, so we just wanted him to sho0t,”  The Wolf Pack captain said. “Me and Weisey just crashed the net. I went off Weisy and that gave me enough time. There were a couple of guys on Weisy so it gave me enough time to handle the puck and put it in the net.”

But the Pack tallied again just ten seconds later when Andres Ambϋhl found himself with the puck on the left wing side. He wristed the puck with a rising shot through the legs of Friesen and high into the short side corner of then net past Munroe. It was 3-3

The Pack finished the period leading in shots 20-21.

“I’m happy with the two points.”  Gernander said.

“It was It was live or die and we had to win this one tongiht,” Sanguinetti said. “We really played well late in the game.  This is playoff hockey for us now and we have to try and find our way to get in.”

You really need tofind a way to get into the game next Wednesday, when the Wolf Pack return home against Worcester.

(Photos by Dinur Blum)

Bruce Berlet will be off for a week of well earned vacation. Here’s his final report for for the month at Hartfordwolfpack.com. The great Michael Fornabaio reports from the Bridgeport perspective at CTPost.com.

GAME SUMMARY and OFFICIAL SCORERS SHEET

STANDINGS:

TEAM GP W L OTL SOL PTS GF GA STK P 10 PIM
1. x-Sharks 72 45 22 2 3 95 249 219 1-0-0-0 8-2-0-0 1165
2. x-Pirates 73 41 22 6 4 92 220 194 5-0-1-1 6-2-1-1 1313
3. Monarchs 73 38 26 3 6 85 191 181 3-0-0-0 4-4-1-1 1077
4. Devils 73 36 27 4 6 82 215 206 1-0-0-0 4-4-0-2 1304
5. Sound Tigers 74 35 29 4 6 80 186 206 0-2-0-0 7-2-1-0 1639
6. WOLF PACK 72 31 30 6 5 73 201 223 3-0-0-0 5-3-1-1 1417
7. Bruins 73 33 35 4 1 71 192 295 0-2-1-0 2-6-1-1 1113
8. Falcons 74 24 35 11 4 63 188 266 0-1-1-1 4-3-2-1 1525

x = clinched a playoff spot

y = clinched division title

LAST PLAYOFF SPOT STANDINGS:

TEAM GP W L OTL SOL PTS
1. Sound Tigers 74 35 29 4 6 80
2. Norfolk Admirals 74 36 22 3 3 78
3. WOLF PACK 72 31 30 6 5 73
4. Bruins 73 33 35 4 1 71

WOLF PACK TRAGIC NUMBER IS 10 (Ten) Any combination of Bridgeport getting points and the Pack not getting them reduces that number. Pack have two games head-to-head with Bridgeport which are both 4-point games.

SCHEDULE:

The Dunkin Donuts hosts the Providence and Manchester contest. Bridgeport and Lowell do battle at the Tsongas Center. Norfolk has the night off, so the Pack will make up one of their two games in hand.

Toronto and Rochester, Albany and Springfield will meet up at 3pm. Worcester and W-B/Scranton tango at 3:05. Meanwhile at 4pm it’s Texas and Chicago, Houston and Peoria, Lake Erie and San Antonio. Hershey and Binghamton knock heads at 5pm.

SCOREBOARD:

Clay Wilson had two goals and a helper as did Mike York, Jamie Johnson had a goal and two apples, Jeff Taffe had a trio of assists and Michael Repik had a duo of assists as Rochester smoked Toronto 7-3. David Desharnais had a duo of goals and helpers, Brock Trotter had a goal and two apples and P.K. Suppan had one of each as Hamilton knocked off Abbotsford 4-0. Texas got two goals from Mathieu Beaudoin and won in a shootout 5-4 over Grand Rapids. Alex Giroux scored for the 41st time this season and for the 101st time in the last two seasons as Hershey doubled up W-B/Scranton 4-2. Oscar Moller had a pair for Manchester and David Laliberte had two for Adirondack and Jon Matsumoto had a marker and two helpers, but it wasn’t enough as the Monarchs knocked off Adirondack 4-3. Portland clinched a playoff spot with a 2-1 win over Springfield and a Norfolk was shut out by Worcester 2-0. Zac Dalpe had a hat trick for next year’s Charlotte Checkers, this year’s Albany River Rats with a 5-2 win. Cam Paddock had a pair of goals and a helper as Peoria defeated Houston 4-1. Chicago shutout Rockford 3-0. Miika Wiikman stopped 29 shots but Lake Erie got one more and they beat San Antonio 5-4.

NOTES:

* If you have yet to sign up for our new service to our readers on Twitter, you’re really missing out on the most extensive coverage of the Wolf Pack and Checkers you’ll find anywhere. In addition to keeping you posted here on all major news stories, visit www.twitter.com/howlingstoday for in-game coverage of both Wolf Pack and Checkers games. Please “Follow” us on Twitter.

* Sanguinetti’s goal set a career high with his 8th of the season and ended a 16 game scoreless streak.

* The three game win streak is the longest for the Pack since a four game run from December 27th to January 3rd.

* The Pack improved their record when tied after two periods 5-2-3-2, 15-10-6-5 is the Pack record in one goal games and 21-13-2-3 when outshooting their opponents.

* Evgeny Grachev has one goal in his last 30 games.

* In the last five years, the Pack are 30-15-0-4 against their instate and franchise rivals from Bridgeport. This season the Pack are 4-3-0-2 and if they win the last game of the season against the Sound Tigers they will tie for the Geico Cup.

* Although there has been some rumblings out of New York about the mindset of these young defensemen with Anders Ericksson getting called up and not one of them, Sanguinetti isn’t feeling that way at all.”We know what we have to do here,” He said. “We just control what we can control and play our game and we’re fighting for a play off spot as well. They have to do what they have to do to get into the playoffs  and we’re trying to get it done here.

* This was a well attended game by Wolf Pack standards with 6,921…nothing to sneeze at for sure. Look at the Checkers attendance yesterday, 12,044

LINES:

Byers © – Newbury – Weise
Dupont – Locke – Grachev
Soryal – Crowder – Couture
Brashear – Garlock – Ambϋhl

Williams – Potter
Heikkinen – Sanguinetti
Nightingale – Brouillette

Johnson
Zaba

(Assistant Captains Bold and Italicized)

SCRATCHES:

P.A. Parenteau – Recall, NY Rangers
Anders Eriksson – Recall, NY Rangers
Lee Baldwin – Healthy Scratch
Steven Valiquette – Hand Injury – Season over
Michael Sauer – Shoulder – Season over
Mike Hoffman – Shoulder – Season over
Brent Henley – Knee – Season over

THREE STARS:

1. HFD – B. Sanguinetti
2. HFD – A. Ambuhl
3. HFD – C. Johnson

ON ICE OFFICIALS:

Referee:
Chris Brown (86)

Linesmen:
David Spannaus (8)
Luke Galvin (2)

NEXT GAME:

Sunday the Pack put it on the line again at 4pm. Bob Crawford is on the air at 3:30pm.

To watch the game live, you can purchased it for $6.99 at AHL-live.

If you can attend the home games, they cost is as little as $10 a ticket, why not just go? For Ticket information call (860) 548-2000.

Too far away or can’t make it? Listen live at WTIC.com or from your cell phone or computer visit www.twitter.com/howlingstoday for complete live in-game coverage.

SCORE-SHEET:

Bridgeport Sound Tigers 3 At Hartford Wolf Pack 4 – Status: Final

Mar 27, 2010 – XL Center Veterans Memorial Coliseum

Bridgeport 1 2 0 – 3

Hartford 1 2 1 – 4

1st Period-1, Hartford, Soryal 4 (Couture), 6:11. 2, Bridgeport, Haskins 11   16:44 (sh ps). Penalties-Morency Bri (roughing), 10:19; Rechlicz Bri (roughing), 10:19; served by Soryal Hfd (bench minor – unsportsmanlike conduct), 10:19; Brashear Hfd (roughing, roughing), 10:19; Wotton Bri (unsportsmanlike conduct), 16:03; Heikkinen Hfd (goaltender interference), 17:41.

2nd Period-3, Bridgeport, Smith 20 (Motherwell, Martin), 8:30 (pp). 4, Bridgeport, Friesen 1 (Radja, Bourbeau), 9:34. 5, Hartford, Byers 21 (Weise, Newbury), 13:43 (pp). 6, Hartford, Ambuhl 5 (Crowder), 13:53. Penalties-Garlock Hfd (tripping), 7:37; Radja Bri (delay of game), 12:51; Nightingale Hfd (high-sticking), 15:24.

3rd Period-7, Hartford, Sanguinetti 8 (Locke, Potter), 16:40. Penalties-Bourbeau Bri (fighting), 7:31; Nightingale Hfd (fighting), 7:31; Potter Hfd (slashing), 8:09.

Shots on Goal-Bridgeport 8-13-7-28. Hartford 15-14-7-36.

Power Play Opportunities-Bridgeport 1 of 5; Hartford 1 of 2.

Goalies-Bridgeport, Munroe 18-15-3 (36 shots-32 saves). Hartford, Johnson 19-16-2 (28 shots-25 saves).

A-6,921

MEANWHILE BACK IN CHARLOTTE:

Charlotte Checkers VERSUS         Reading Royals

CHECKERS TREAT SEASON’S BIGGEST CROWD TO VICTORY

Four Unanswered Goals Propels Charlotte To 4-2 Win Over Reading

The Charlotte Checkers fell behind by two and fought back with four unanswered goals as they defeated the Reading Royals, 4-2, on Saturday evening in front of 12,044 enthusiastic fans. The crowd was the largest in the entire ECHL this season.

With the win, their 40th of the season and ninth in 10 games, the Checkers close the gap with South Carolina and are now only one point out of first place in the conference with a game in hand.

David Urquhart notched a goal and an assist while Ryan Munce stopped 29 of 31 for his ninth win in 10 starts. Kevin Schaeffer scored the game-winning goal, David Marshall extended his point streak to seven games with a goal and Daniel Tkaczuk chipped in with two assists.

Andrew Carroll got things going in the first with a big hit that sent a Royals defender flying into the boards. The Checkers responded by raising their play and began buzzing Reading’s Andrew Engelage, but the Royals goaltender stopped a flurry of shots to keep it a scoreless game.

Reading would strike first with 10 seconds to play in the period when Stefano Giliati picked up an unsuccessful clearing attempt by a Charlotte defender and fired it home past Munce.

Early in the second, the Royals took a two-goal lead on a penalty shot off a questionable tripping call against Munce. Andrew Sarauer skated in alone and put on the brakes before beating Munce with a wrist shot blocker side.

The rest of the period was all Checkers as they scored three unanswered goals to take a 3-2 lead.

Devin DiDiomete sparked the comeback by giving his team some energy when he dropped the gloves with Reading defenseman Scott Fletcher. Just 23 seconds later, David Marshall carried the puck into the Royals’ zone and, using Mike Taylor as a screen, fired a wrist shot between the legs of Engelage for his 21st of the season.

Less than two minutes later, Reading forward Daniel Steiner was assessed a costly interference penalty when he ran into Munce in front of the Charlotte net. The Checkers made good on the power play as Matt Stefanishion won the draw back to Steve Ward who let a wrist shot go that beat Engelage high over the glove.

With six minutes to play in the period, Charlotte took its first lead of the game on a goal by defenseman Kevin Schaeffer. Brock Bradford entered the Reading zone and fed a saucer pass over to Schaeffer who redirected it into the net.

The Checkers then capitalized on a Royals miscue and took a two-goal lead. Daniel Tkaczuk picked up the mishandled puck at his own blue line and skated into the Reading zone on a 1-on-1. Tkaczuk stalled as he waited for help then deked the defender and backhanded a shot on net. David Urquhart joined the play as he skated in and stuffed home the rebound for his second goal in nine games since joining the Checkers.

Reading pulled its goaltender in the dying seconds for the extra attacker but Munce turned aside everything that came his way and walked away with his 24th win of the season. The two teams will meet again tomorrow at 2 p.m.

The Checkers (40-21-7) will host Reading Sunday at 2 p.m. and ticket information can be obtained by calling 704-342-4-ICE or visiting www.gocheckers.com. Season tickets for the inaugural 2010-11 AHL season are now on sale and 40-game packages start as low as $200.

GAME SUMMARY and OFFICIAL SCORERS SHEET

STANDINGS:

TEAM GP W L OTL SOL PTS GF GA STK P 10 PIM
1. x-South Carolina Sting Rays 69 38 19 6 6 88 236 212 0-2-0-0 3-4-2-1 926
2. x-Charlotte Checkers 68 40 21 4 3 87 243 216 1-0-0-0 9-1-0-0 1449
3. x- Florida Everblades 69 36 24 4 5 81 223 213 0-1-0-0 5-5-0-0 1237
4. Gwinnett Gladiators 67 31 29 4 3 69 236 257 1-0-0-0 5-4-0-1 1082

x= Teams who have clinched a playoff spot.

SCOREBOARD:

Gwinnett doubled up Florida 4-2 in the division action. South Carolina had the night off.
Toledo crushed Wheeling 5-1. Trenton put an ass-whooping on Elmira 5-0. Andrew Fournier had a five-point night with a hat-trick and two helpers, and Sam Florek had two goals and two assists as Kalamazoo trounced Cincinnati 6-3. Adam Naglich had two helpers, Dan Kissel had a goal and a helper for Bakersfield, but James Sixsmith two markers and an apple, Ryan Kinasewich and Dylan Hunter each had a goal and an assist as Utah beat up on the Condors. Idaho slammed Victoria to the mat 5-1 at home. Jon Rheault had a pair of tallies and Tim Kraus had a goal and an assist as Ontario doubled up Alaska 4-2. Alex Bourret had his 17th as Las Vegas beat Stockton 3-2.

NOTES:

* Saturday’s crowd of 12,044 was the largest in the entire ECHL this season

* The Checkers are 14-3-1 in their last 18 home games and are 9-1-0 in their last 10 overall

* Ryan Munce is 9-1-0 in his last 10 starts and leads the ECHL with a .911 save percentage

* David Marshall is currently on a seven-game point streak (6g, 5a)

* Andrew Carroll leads the ECHL with five shootout-winning goals and leads the Checkers with 28 goals

LINES:

Carroll – Leveille © Slattengren
Schepke – Tkaczuk – Bradford
Doig – Taylor – Marshall
Stefanishion – DiDiomete

Urquhart – Schaeffer
Berube – Hendrikx
Ward

Munce
Zemlak

(Assistant Captains Bold and Italicized)

SCRATCHES:

Ryan Crane – Healthy Scratch
Randy Rowe – Recall in Lake Erie
Matt Ford – Recall in Lake Erie
Julien Brouillette – Recall in Hartford
Ethan Graham – Recall in Texas
Kenny Roche – Recall in Providence
T.J. Reynolds – Lower Body – 2-3 weeks
Chris Snavely – Wrist Surgery – Season over
Trevor Glass – Back Surgery – Season over
Codey Burki – Undisclosed – Season over
Chris Chappell – Shoulder Surgery – Season over

THREE STARS

1. CHR – D. Urquhart
2. CHR – D. Tkaczuk
3. CHR – R. Munce

ON-ICE OFFICALS:

Referee:
Jarrod Ragusin (28)

Linesmen:
Mathieu Chenier (71)
Ben Shiley (92)

NEXT GAME:

Reading plays the back-end of the back-to-back on the weekend Sunday and then the last regular season home game is Tuesday the 30th against Gwinnett. The Checkers finish the season with two on the road in Florida. Jason Shaya will be on the air Sunday at 2pm.

For live in-game coverage from your cell phone or computer, we’ll have the action for you at www.twitter.com/howlingstoday.

You can always buy tickets for any Checkers game home or away at Ticketmaster.com.

Should you want to watch this very exciting team from the comfort of your computer chair, all Checkers games are available on B2Live.

SCORE-SHEET:

Reading Royals 2 At Charlotte Checkers 4 – Status: Final

Mar 27, 2010 – Time Warner Cable Arena

Reading 1 1 0 – 2

Charlotte 0 3 1 – 4

1st Period-1, Reading, Giliati 21   19:50 (pp). Penalties-Hendrikx Chr (hooking), 3:10; Cruthers Rea (slashing ), 7:57; Stefanishion Chr (elbowing), 7:57; DiDiomete Chr (high-sticking), 10:32; Gwilliam Rea (interference), 16:04; Berube Chr (boarding), 18:40.

2nd Period-2, Reading, Sarauer 25   4:29 (ps). 3, Charlotte, Marshall 21 (Taylor, Urquhart), 6:46. 4, Charlotte, Ward 6 (Stefanishion, Tkaczuk), 8:20 (pp). 5, Charlotte, Schaeffer 5 (Bradford, Schepke), 13:56. Penalties-LaLonde Rea (unsportsmanlike conduct), 3:39; DiDiomete Chr (unsportsmanlike conduct), 3:39; Fletcher Rea (fighting – major), 6:23; DiDiomete Chr (fighting – major), 6:23; Steiner Rea (interference on the goalkeeper), 7:21; Cavosie Rea (tripping), 8:41; Stefanishion Chr (unsportsmanlike conduct), 8:41; Ward Chr (tripping), 10:53; Brocklehurst Rea (slashing ), 16:52; Giliati Rea (roughing), 19:51; DiDiomete Chr (roughing), 19:51.

3rd Period-6, Charlotte, Urquhart 2 (Tkaczuk), 10:04 (sh). Penalties-Schepke Chr (interference on the goalkeeper), 8:11; Leveille Chr (hooking), 13:29; LaLonde Rea (holding), 16:48.

Shots on Goal-Reading 13-11-7-31. Charlotte 8-17-10-35.

Power Play Opportunities-Reading 1 of 6; Charlotte 1 of 5.

Goalies-Reading, Engelage 7-3-0-0 (35 shots-31 saves). Charlotte, Munce 24-14-2-1 (31 shots-29 saves).

A-12,044

SHOT BY THE SHOOTOUT

Wolf Pack puck     VERSUS     Sound Tigers

The fourth game in five nights of which the last three straight were all overtime affairs. How about injuries to two of the team’s top defenseman? What about having their replacements rushed up from Charlotte of the ECHL and one of them included a rookie making his AHL debut? Here’s one you might have heard, the team’s best overall forward and best defenseman both out of the lineup on NHL recall. Each one of those would be legitimate excuses for a mixed bag performance that a coach looking for an alibi could call upon without challenge. However, Hartford Wolf Pack head coach Ken Gernander isn’t that kind of coach. “We got six points (in the last four games) with overtimes and shootouts and you want to keep getting points.” He said. “I thought we played pretty well this week.”

After losing an emotional game in overtime less 24 hours earlier, the Pack worked hard to put themselves in a position to win. Despite starting off slowly, the Pack turned that around and the effort paid off. Over the first 21:41 of the contest the Pack built a two-goal lead. Bridgeport head coach Jack Capuano wasn’t worried. “Even though we were losing the game, I liked what I saw,” he said in his post game comments to reporters. “Systems-wise, what I saw, the way we were moving the puck, we were doing a lot of good things.”

The Packs first came as Andres Ambϋhl, who has greatly improved his game of late, gave the Pack a 1-0 lead with a tally at 9:17 of the first period. Following up his own shot that Bridgeport netminder Scott Munroe (29 saves, 7-5-1) had denied, Devin DiDiomete retrieved the puck in the corner and made a smashingly great feed to Ambϋhl just inside the slot on the left side. The assist was the first point for DiDiomete in his fourth AHL game since returning from a broken arm sustained in training camp.

“This was his best week of hockey since he’s come over and I hope that’s a sign of things to come,” Gernander said of Ambϋhl. “That’s where he’s set the bar for now but he continues to raise it and push. He’s shown marked improvement in the last week and become pretty effective.”

The Pack controlled the play in the first period outshooting the Tigers 13-7. The Tigers best scoring chance of the period came at 14:37. On a break in play, Trevor Smith got ahead of Brodie Dupont going up the slot. Ex-Pack captain, Greg Moore feathered a beautiful lead pass through traffic and Matt Zaba, (39 saves, 1-1-1) making his first start in five games (Nov 19th vs. Wilkes-Barre) made a great play to repel the attack and the Wolf Pack led 1-0 at the first intermission.

Realizing that fatigue could play a factor later, and it did, the Pack came out of the gates to start the second period looking to build on their lead against their hosts. At 1:41, Michael Sauer picked up his first point in seven games when his shot from the right point hit Paul Crowder in front of the net and got past Munroe. Crowder has goals in back-to-back games and four in his last six contests.

But with the two goal lead, Bridgeport raised the level of their play and pressed their visitors hard with good scoring chances. “We’re pretty fortunate that Zabs has fresh legs and made some big saves. I thought he played very well.” Gernander said.

Despite the yeoman effort between the pipes there was nothing he could do on the Sound Tigers first tally. James Sixsmith’s harassment of ECHL call-up Jared Nightingale led to a turnover behind the Pack net. Once with the puck, Sixsmith looked up to find left wing Trevor Smith had beaten Derek Couture and Ryan Garlock coming back up the slot and fed his teammate with a perfect pass that Smith put high over Zaba at 13:38.

The two teams came out of the second intermission and the Pack clearly looked tired. The Tigers had control of the puck in the Pack zone for what seemed like forever. The Tigers were able to make a full line change without leaving the Pack zone. When Brodie Dupont finally got control of the puck it seemed like they would be able to make a change, but he whiffed slightly on his clearing attempt and Smith picked it up and fed Dustin Kohn. The Tigers defenseman carried the puck around the Pack zone like Marques Haynes of the Harlem Globetrotters dribbling through the Washington Generals. Dupont did his best to try and rid the Edmonton native of the puck but he just didn’t have the legs to keep up. Kohn found Andy MacDonald, just back in the AHL from an NHL recall with the Islanders, and blasted a shot from the right point and beat Zaba to the glove side for his second of the season at 1:24.

The game stayed tied through the rest of the period and through overtime as both teams were tired, but clearly the Pack’s legs were gone. “I thought there were times tonight where we could have shot the puck more, not necessarily always to score but to rather than to force a play into coverage, to put it at the net and to hopefully get a rebound opportunity or something like that just to create more pressure.” Gernander said.

In the shootout, the Pack sent out Dale Weise who’s backhanded shot was denied by Munroe. Zaba then stopped Smith with a try for the five-hole. Dane Byers was up next for the Pack, but his try went for naught. Then Moore had a chance to do some damage to his ex-mates and did when he came up the ice slowly and then wristed a hard shot from the left side over Zaba’s shoulder for the 1-0 lead. Paul Crowder was dispensed by Munroe before Greg Mauldin’s shot was as close as you can get without scoring as his high shot rang of the crossbar behind Zaba. The Pack needed a score and the AHL’s leader in that department didn’t fail them as Corey Locke’s fake got Munroe down and then the Toronto native lifted it over him off the backhand. Justin DiBenedetto then rang his shot off the crossbar also and the Pack had a chance to give themselves the lead. But Munroe stopped Ambϋhl with an impressive dive back to the puck that robbed the young German of a score. When Zaba stopped MacDonald’s backhanded bid the shootout would head to extra rounds.

Jordan Owens had the Pack’s first stab at it and put the puck right in the center of Munroe’s chest. That left it to Matt Martin with a chance to win it for the home team.  Martin came in with speed and moved the puck and then blasted a wrister from in tight low to the blocker side beating Zaba for the win.

“I thought for both teams that played four games in five nights that was probably one of the best games of the year that I watched from back behind the bench.” Capuano said. “It was exciting to watch. Both teams played well, they were missing players but the guys who stepped in for them did a great job. Tonight though was a really great game for us though. Our puck management was real good. It was a good physical game.” He added, “The way (both teams) played, both teams deserved a point.”

 

Bob Crawford one again has all the bases covered, not just with great announcing but with a solid look at the game at Hartfordwolfpack.com. Mike Fornabaio brilliantly covers the game from the Bridgeport perspective in The Connecticut Post for the view from inside the Bridgeport locker room.

 

GAME SUMMARY and OFFICIAL SCORERS SHEET

 

NOTES:

* Scouts aplenty were in the building for this one. From the Rangers, AGM & Wolf PAck GM, Jim Schoenfeld, Adam Graves, Anders Hedberg were all in the press box. Scouts from the Columbus Blue Jackets were in teh building as was John Ferguson with the San Jose Sharks.

* Four of the top twenty scorers in the AHL are all on recall. Two of them are Wolf Pack, P.A. Parenteau (Who’s not coming back) and Bobby Sanguinetti (Who is). The others are Ryan Keller (Ottawa) and ex-Pack/Ranger Alexandre Giroux (Washington)

* Corey Locke still sits atop the AHL in scoring with 33 points (12g, 21a)…Dale Weise is getting closer and closer to cracking the Top 20 for the first time in his career. He’s currently in 26th place with 19 points (8g, 11a). Just one more point and he’ll be in the Top 20. Weise leads the AHL in shorthanded goals with three. Evgeny Grachev is currently tenth in scoring amongst rookies with 15 points (6g. 9a)

* Another blanked night for the Pack power play and they still are somehow on top of the AHL. They are still sitting at 23.6% but Grand Rapids is right there at 23.4%

* Conversely the Penalty Killing just keeps getting stronger moving up now to 17th at 82.3% Hershey is still tops at 94.7%.

* Despite not playing particularly well the past 4 games, the Pack did manage to pick up six points.

* This was the Pack’s first los when leading after one period, 7-0-0-1 and their second when leading after two, 11-1-0-1

* When outshot by their opponent, the team record is 7-2-0-2 and 4-4-1-2 in one goal games.

* At home the Pack are 8-1-1-1 and on the road 5-7-0-1.

* Michael Sauer ended a six game pointless streak with an assist on the Crowder goal in the second period.

* Dave Urquhart ended a 15 game pointless streak also on the Crowder goal. Urquhart said after the game, “I’ve just been trying to find my game and I feel like it’s getting better. I’m breaking out of that now and I’m going to start putting up plenty of points.”

* Andres Ambϋhl is playing exceptionally well and now has 2 goals in his last three games.

* Grachev has just 1 goal total to show for his last five games and has gone blank the last three.

* Weise was kept off the scorer’s sheet for the first time in six games.

* Devin DiDiomete got his first point of the season with the only assist on the Ambϋhl goal

 

MEANWHILE DOWN IN CHARLOTTE:

Charlotte Checkers  VERSUS  Gwinnett Gladiators

 

 

CHECKERS BATTLE BACK FOR DRAMATIC OVERTIME WIN 

 Doig Nets Winner On OT Penalty Shot; Home Win Streak At Six

The Charlotte Checkers fell behind by two goals in the third period and battled back with a dramatic 5-4 overtime victory over the Gwinnett Gladiators on Sunday afternoon. With the win, the Checkers have now won six straight games at Time Warner Cable Arena.

Tyler Doig registered a “Gordie Howe hat trick” – two goals, an assist and a fighting major – and scored the game-winning goal on a penalty shot in overtime. Charlotte played short-handed with only four defensemen after team captain Jared Nightingale and rookie blueliner Mike Berube were called up to Hartford prior to the game.

Gwinnett drew first blood just over four minutes into the game on a goal by winger Pat Galivan. Gladiators leading scorer Tom Zanoski fed Galivan in the slot who then backhanded a shot past Munce for his ninth of the season.

The Checkers would respond back early in the second period on the power play. Tyler Doig took a pass from Michel Leveille at the point and let go a wrist shot through traffic that beat Gladiators goaltender David Brown. The goal came at the 3:38 mark of the period.

Just one minute and four seconds later, Gwinnett regained the lead on a Checkers turnover in the defensive end. Matt Francis grabbed the puck, took a shot on net and Chad Denny was there to stuff home the rebound.

Charlotte kept coming, however, and tied the game with 32 seconds to play in the second period. Defenseman Chris Snavely took a pass from Jean-Philipp Chabot in the slot and beat Brown with a wrist shot for his first of the season.

In the third period, Gwinnett put their league-leading power play to work and regained the lead on a goal by Matt Siddall. The Gladiators then added another by leading scorer Tom Zanoski to bring the score to 4-2.

The Checkers would not give up and scored a power-play goal with less than five minutes to play to bring them to within one. Randy Rowe took the puck in the slot and fired a shot under the cross-bar for his third in as many games since returning from injury.

With time winding down, Charlotte pulled their goaltender for the extra attacker and it paid off as David Marshall scored the tying goal with 12 seconds to play.

In overtime, T.J. Reynolds made a beautiful pass to Doig who skated in alone on the Gwinnett goaltender but was hauled down. Doig was awarded a penalty shot and made good use of it as he faked a slap shot, fooling the netminder, and tucked it home for the victory.

The Checkers (11-4-2-0) will host Gwinnett on Wednesday at Time Warner Cable Arena. Game time is 7pm and ticket information can be obtained by calling 704-342-4-ICE or visiting www.gocheckers.com

Notes: The Checkers have won six straight games at home…Charlotte has scored 41 goals in its last seven games (5.85 goals per game)…Tyler Doig has 16 points (4g, 12a) in his last nine games…Kenny Roche has seven goals in his last seven games…Randy Rowe has seven points (3g, 4a) in three games since beginning the season on injured reserve…Michel Leveille leads the team in scoring with 25 pts (10g, 15a) in 17 games…T.J. Reynolds leads all ECHL defensemen with 72 penalty minutes and eight fighting majors… Matt Ford remains with Lake Erie (AHL) and defenseman Ethan Graham is with Norfolk (AHL)…Trevor Glass remains on the 21-day injured reserve.

 

SCORE-SHEET:

Gwinnett 1 1 2 0 – 4

Charlotte 0 2 2 1 – 5

1st Period-1, Gwinnett, Galivan 9 (Zanoski, Forney), 4:41. Penalties-Reynolds Chr (cross-checking), 2:22; Fritsch Gwt (hooking), 7:39; Zanoski Gwt (interference), 10:28.

2nd Period-2, Charlotte, Doig 5 (Leveille), 3:38. 3, Gwinnett, Denny 2 (Francis, Siddall), 4:42. 4, Charlotte, Snavely 1 (Chabot, Doig), 19:28. Penalties-Siddall Gwt (slashing ), 1:36; Brocklehurst Gwt (hooking), 6:26.

3rd Period-5, Gwinnett, Siddall 5 (Denny, Francis), 4:02 (pp). 6, Gwinnett, Zanoski 12 (Lawrence), 9:30. 7, Charlotte, Rowe 3 (Leveille, Ward), 15:14 (pp). 8, Charlotte, Marshall 3 (Rowe, Roche), 19:48. Penalties-Marshall Chr (slashing ), 1:32; Snavely Chr (delay of game), 2:15; Galivan Gwt (slashing ), 4:20; Lawrence Gwt (holding), 5:04; Leveille Chr (holding the stick), 5:04; Denny Gwt (slashing ), 6:51; Galivan Gwt (fighting – major), 10:51; Doig Chr (slashing , instigating, fighting – major), 10:51; Marchesi Gwt (holding), 13:10; Filangieri Gwt (high-sticking, unsportsmanlike conduct), 13:19.

OT Period-9, Charlotte, Doig 6   2:55 (ps). Penalties-No Penalties

Shots on Goal-Gwinnett 12-7-11-3-33. Charlotte 9-13-22-6-50.

Power Play Opportunities-Gwinnett 1 of 5; Charlotte 1 of 9.

Goalies-Gwinnett, Brown 1-1-1-0 (50 shots-45 saves). Charlotte, Munce 2-1-0-0 (33 shots-29 saves).

A-3,924

 

LINES:

Byers – Dupont – Weise

Grachev – Locke – Ambϋhl

Soryal – Crowder – Owens

DiDiomete – Garlock – Couture

Potter – Berube

Heikkinen – Nightingale

SauerUrquhart

Zaba

 

(Assistant Captains bold & italicized)

 

SCRATCHES:

Bobby Sanguinetti – On recall with the NY Rangers

Mathieu Dandenault – Lower Body – Indefinite

Nigel Williams – Concussion – Indefinite

Brent Henley – Lower Body Injury – Four to Six weeks

Chris Chappell – Healthy

 

THREE STARS:

1. BRI – M. Martin
2. BRI – T. Smith
3. BRI – A. MacDonald

ON ICE OFFICIALS:

Referee:
Chris Cozzan (68)

Linesmen:
Luke Galvin (2)
Brent Colby (7)

NEXT GAME:

After playing four in five nights, including three overtimes and still walking off with 6 points, the Pack get Monday off and then back to the practice ice on Tuesday as they get ready for another three in three starting Friday night against first place Manchester in the battle of the AEG controlled teams. Then they hit the road for two in Pennsylvania …Saturday in Wilkes-Barre and Sunday in Hershey. Howlings will there for both games in both cities as Saturday is my birthday and seeing these two games in person was what I wanted to do. So getting you the info you need to stay current on the team is my gift to you as I officially become older than dirt.

SCORE-SHEET:

Hartford 1 1 0 0 – 2

Bridgeport 0 1 1 0 – 3

1st Period-1, Hartford, Ambuhl 3 (DiDiomete), 9:17. Penalties-Byers Hfd (fighting), 9:19; Martin Bri (fighting), 9:19.

2nd Period-2, Hartford, Crowder 6 (Sauer, Urquhart), 1:41. 3, Bridgeport, Smith 8 (Sixsmith, Marcinko), 13:38. Penalties-Owens Hfd (boarding), 1:48; Garlock Hfd (roughing), 10:30; Heikkinen Hfd (roughing), 10:30; Bentivoglio Bri (roughing), 10:30; Nightingale Hfd (cross-checking), 16:33; DiBenedetto Bri (roughing), 16:33.

3rd Period-4, Bridgeport, MacDonald 2 (Kohn, Smith), 1:24. Penalties-Nightingale Hfd (roughing), 9:13; Klementyev Bri (roughing), 9:13; Urquhart Hfd (tripping), 10:21; Smith Bri (tripping), 11:47.

OT Period- No Scoring.Penalties-No Penalties

Shootout – Hartford 1 (Weise NG, Byers NG, Crowder NG, Locke G, Ambuhl NG, Owens NG), Bridgeport 2 (Smith NG, Moore G, Mauldin NG, DiBenedetto NG, MacDonald NG, Martin G).

Shots on Goal-Hartford 7-13-7-4-0-31. Bridgeport 13-13-11-4-1-42.

Power Play Opportunities-Hartford 0 of 1; Bridgeport 0 of 3.

Goalies-Hartford, Zaba 1-1-1 (41 shots-39 saves). Bridgeport, Munroe 7-5-1 (31 shots-29 saves).

A-3,808