Saturday, October 27, 2012

Rochester 6, Adirondack 2 10/27


In all seriousness, the Phantoms, who had been shorthanded 17 times all season, spotted Rochester 10 power plays and an AHL-season-high 51 shots on goal in a 6-2 loss at the Civic Center. Including last night's 5-1 loss at Albany, the Phantoms have been outscored 11-3 this weekend.

They fall to 2-4 on the season and travel to Syracuse tomorrow to face the Norfolk Admirals Crunch, best known for a roster containing several members of last season's Calder Cup champion Norfolk Admirals team. By the way, most of those guys suffered their first regulation loss since Feb. 5 tonight at the hands of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, who have won back-to-back games after opening 0-4.

The print story focuses on the power plays and shot aspect of the game. Neither did the Phantoms any good. Captain Ben Holmstrom said it best: “Everybody has a good power play in this league. You can’t give anybody that many chances. That’s on us for taking ourselves out of the game.”

Here, though, I thought it was interesting how Terry Murray made sweeping, wholesale line changes after last night's 5-1 loss at Albany. All five guys who sat out that game were in the lineup. None of his line combinations and defensive pairings were intact (more on the combinations here).

Summary: Eddy, FitzGerald, Brown, Ford, Testwuide in. Lauridsen, Dimmen, Wellwood, Roe, Mangene out. I didn't think that was planned before the loss, but asked anyway. Murray's comment:
"You react to what's going on in the game. You change lines during the game. Or if you get an effort like we did last night in Albany where you're not satisfied, we have other players who have been working very hard to stay sharp and to get themselves into the line-up. The opportunity presented itself with what happened last night."
Tonight, he said, they played 20 minutes. The first period, they trailed 1-0 but were getting pucks deep and he shot total was 15-13. In the second and third period, they were outshot 36-17.

"They got a lot of pucks to the net on the power play. ... There's more to it than that," Murray said. "We end up chasing the puck a little bit too much -- two men going to the puck carrier in our d-zone opens up backdoor, the first goal against is the example of that. We have to just settle down. There has to be some more composure with the young players. Trust each other. Trust the line mate or people to do their own job. I think if we can just grab on to that, we can become a pretty good team. We've shown that already. We've played some very good games, we've shown real good responsibility without the puck. But in the last two games, it's slipped away."

We already handled the prescout. Around the division: Chris Kreider scores his first AHL goal and adds an assist as Connecticut doubles-up Providence, 6-3. That's despite being out-shot 40-23. Tomas Kundratek has two assists and an empty-netter and Braden Holtby stops all 35 shots he sees as Hershey blanks Albany, 3-0. David Ullstrom scores the decisive shootout goal as Bridgeport clips Albany, 3-2.

Trenton Update: Titans pull Scott Wedgewood when they're down by three and it backfires as Toledo gets an empty-netter to win, 5-1. Marcel Noebels with an assist, giving him eight points in seven games. He's the only Titan with a point in all seven games.

Trenton is 5-2, tied for tops in the conference and one off Idaho for the league lead.

I'll be following the Syracuse game from home and will have some post-game stuff here on the blog.

Until next time,


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