Monthly Archives: December 2011

Game #34: Albany at Adirondack

Location: Glens Falls Civic Center, Glens Falls, NY. Time: 7:00 PM.

Season Series:

Tied at 1.

Standings:

Albany, 14-13-4-2, 34 points, tied for 2nd in Northeast Division; Adirondack, 16-13-1-1, 34 points, tied for 2nd in Northeast Division

Leading Scorers:

Albany: Steve Zalewski, 21 points (9 G, 12 A); Joe Whitney, 19 points (7 G, 12 A); Matt Anderson, 18 points (5 G, 13 A)

Adirondack: Denis Hamel, 23 points (11 G, 12 A); Jason Akeson, 22 points (8 G, 14 A); Ben Holmstrom, 18 points (9 G, 9 A)

Goaltending:

Albany: Keith Kinkaid, 8-9-0, 3.16 GAA; Jeff Frazee, 5-8-2, 2.59 GAA; Timo Pielmeier, 0-0-0, 6.74 GAA

Adirondack: Michael Leighton, 11-11-0, 2.44 GAA; Jason Bacashihua, 5-3-1, 3.07 GAA

Miscellaneous:

Time Warner Cable Cup Game #3; Denis Hamel’s 1000th professional game.

Following Along?

Radio: AHL Live (Albany); WNYQ 101.7 FM (Adirondack)

Twitter: myself, @AlbanyDevils (Albany); @PhantomsHockey, @PSPhantoms (Adirondack)

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Game #33: Albany vs. Manchester

Location: Times Union Center, Albany, NY. Time: 7:00 PM.

Season Series:

First meeting. Future matchup: February 25th @ Manchester

Standings:

Manchester, 19-12-0-2, 40 points, 2nd place in Atlantic Division; Albany, 14-13-3-2, 33 points, 2nd place in Northeast Division

Leading Scorers:

Manchester: Marc-Andre Cliche, 18 points (9 G, 9 A); Dwight King, 18 points (5 G, 13 A); Brandon Kozun, 17 points (8 G, 9 A)

Albany: 3 tied with 18 points each

Goaltending:

Manchester: Jeff Zatkoff, 9-4-1, 2.11 GAA; Martin Jones, 10-8-1, 2.45 GAA

Albany: Jeff Frazee, 5-8-2, 2.59 GAA; Keith Kinkaid, 8-8-0, 3.05 GAA; Timo Pielmeier, 0-0-0, 6.74 GAA

Miscellaneous:

$10 tickets for all seats; Team Poster Night (first 4000); Pregame Blood Drive in Exhibition Hall (inside the arena)

Following Along?

Radio: AHL Live (Albany); WGIR AM 610 (Manchester)

Twitter: myself, @AlbanyDevils, @Bill_Cain_ (Albany); @MonarchsHockey (Manchester)

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Game #32: Albany at Connecticut

Location: XL Center Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Hartford, CT. Time: 7:00 PM.

Season Series:

Tied at 1.

Standings:

Albany, 14-12-3-2, 33 points, 2nd place in Northeast Division; Connecticut, 17-9-1-3, 38 points, 1st place in Northeast Division

Leading Scorers:

Albany: Joe Whitney, 18 points (7 G, 11 A); Steve Zalewski, 17 points (8 G, 9 A); Matt Anderson, 17 points (5 G, 12 A)

Connecticut: Jonathan Audy-Marchessault, 26 points (10 G, 16 A); Kris Newbury, 23 points (9 G, 14 A); Mats Zuccarello, 22 points (8 G, 14 A)

Goaltending:

Albany: Jeff Frazee, 5-8-2, 2.59 GAA; Keith Kinkaid, 8-7-0, 3.06 GAA; Timo Pielmeier, 0-0-0, 6.74 GAA

Connecticut: Chad Johnson, 10-5-3, 2.43 GAA; Cameron Talbot, 7-5-0, 2.89 GAA

Following Along?

Radio: AHL Live (Albany); 106.9 WCCC (Connecticut)

Twitter: @AlbanyDevils (Albany); @CTWhale (Connecticut)

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Game #31: Albany at Binghamton

Location: Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena, Binghamton, NY. Time: 7:00 PM.

Season Series:

Tied at 2.

Standings:

Albany, 14-11-3-2, 33 points, 2nd place in Northeast Division; Binghamton, 11-19-1-1, 24 points, 5th place in East Division

Leading Scorers:

Albany: Steve Zalewski, 17 points (8 G, 9 A); Matt Anderson, 17 points (5 G, 12 A); Joe Whitney, 15 points (6 G, 9 A)

Binghamton: Mark Parrish, 17 points (10 G, 7 A); Pat Cannone, 17 points (7 G, 10 A); Mike Hoffman, 17 points (7 G, 10 A)

Goaltending:

Albany: Jeff Frazee, 5-8-2, 2.59 GAA; Keith Kinkaid, 8-6-0, 2.79 GAA; Timo Pielmeier, 0-0-0, 0.00 GAA

Binghamton: Mike McKenna, 5-9-0, 2.80 GAA; Robin Lehner, 6-11-1, 2.93 GAA

Following Along?

Radio: AHL Live (Albany); 107.5 WBBI (Binghamton)

Twitter: myself, @AlbanyDevils (Albany); @PSBJoyOnTheSens, @BSens_Hockey (Binghamton)

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Quick Notes…

Now that Christmas is over, time to get back to work. Before I head out west to Binghamton, a note or two:

-Just announced about, oh, 15 minutes ago: Goaltender Keith Kinkaid is your AHL Player of the Week for Christmas week. He may only have appeared in one game, but it was a good one…stopping all 36 shots in a 3-0 shutout of the Senators on Wednesday night. He may just have the chance to repeat that effort in the rematch tonight in the Southern Tier.

-I’ll note any roster updates (if anyone returns, etc.) as warmups start tonight. Pregame out around the 4:00 hour.

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Holiday High Note

I must say it was not a bad week here for the Devils. Two games against former East Division rivals produced two very good wins, one against a team they have never defeated before. Let’s recap the week:

12/19 at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton: 2-1 W

The week began with a rare Monday night tilt against the Penguins in northeast Pennsylvania, a team the Devils had yet to beat since the franchise started out in Lowell 6 years ago. I wasn’t around to listen to this one due to family reasons…but our friends at Chirps From Center Ice were. You can find the postgame recap here. To quick summarize it: Mike Hoeffel scored his first 2 goals of the season and Jeff Frazee turned aside 25 shots despite being banged up. It was the first win for a Devils affiliate against the Penguins since the River Rats days, going back to late in the 2004-05 season (that nugget of info per The Citizens Voice).

12/21 vs. Binghamton: 3-0 W

To round out the week, the Devils hosted the front end of a home and home against the defending Calder Cup champs. The story here had to be Keith Kinkaid, who after not getting in the lineup for a couple of games came out and was outstanding in net, stopping everything the B-Sens shot at him. Other than a one punch fight between the Sens’ Mark Borowiecki and the Devils’ Mike Banwell, and a late battle between former River Rat Tim Conboy and Stephane Veilleux, not much action during the first period. The Devils took the game over during the second, scoring twice (goals by Joe Sova and Vladimir Zharkov) on former teammate Mike McKenna. Kinkaid shut the B-Sens down after that, earning his second shutout of the season and stopping 36 shots. Nick Palmieri added an empty netter late in the 3rd period to seal the win. Combined with a regulation loss by Adirondack in Connecticut, the Devils leap frogged over their Northway rivals into second place in the Northeast Division, just five points behind the Whale for the top spot.

Notes:

-The only roster move this week was newly acquired goaltender Timo Pielmeier being summoned from Elmira to back up Keith Kinkaid on Wednesday. As mentioned earlier, Jeff Frazee was injured Monday night when a Penguin player crashed his net. He did manage to finish the game and earn the win.

-Injury updates: Matt Corrente returned to the lineup Wednesday after sitting out about a month. Jay Leach is back out after re-aggravating a lower body injury. The splint is off of Dan Kelly’s broken nose, but he then came down with strep throat, no timetable for his return. Nathan Perkovich is now out, joining Steve Bernier and his broken thumb on the sidelines.

-Myles Stoesz finished his 4 game suspension and was eligible to play Wednesday, but was a healthy scratch. His eye is still healing, as I got to see it kind of up close Sunday at the annual season ticket holder holiday skate.

Looking Ahead:

After 3 days off to enjoy Christmas with their families, the boys are right back to work on Monday to start a 4 game week. Monday night is a rematch with the Senators, this time in the Southern Tier. Tuesday night it’s off to Hartford to take on the first place Whale. Friday night comes the one home game of the week, they host Manchester. Finally to end the calendar year it’s off to Glens Falls for a Time Warner Cable Cup matchup with the Phantoms.

Finally…Merry Christmas everyone! For a gift I present the greatest Christmas hockey video EVER…enjoy!

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Game #30: Albany vs. Binghamton

Location: Times Union Center, Albany, NY. Time: 7:00 PM.

Season Series:

Binghamton leads 2-1.

Standings:

Binghamton, 11-18-1-1, 24 points, 5th place in East Division; Albany, 13-11-3-2, 31 points, 3rd place in Northeast Division

Leading Scorers:

Binghamton: Mark Parrish, 17 points (10 G, 7 A); Patrick Cannone, 17 points (7 G, 10 A); Mike Hoffman, 16 points (7 G, 9 A)

Albany: Steve Zalewski, 17 points (8 G, 9 A); Matt Anderson, 16 points (5 G, 11 A); Joe Whitney, 14 points (6 G, 8 A)

Goaltending:

Binghamton: Mike McKenna, 5-8-0, 2.86 GAA; Robin Lehner, 6-11-1, 2.93 GAA

Albany: Jeff Frazee, 5-8-2, 2.59 GAA; Keith Kinkaid, 7-6-0, 3.00 GAA

Following Along?

Radio: AHL Live (Albany); 107.5 WBBI (Binghamton)

Twitter: myself, @AlbanyDevils, @Bill_Cain_ (Albany); @PSBJoyOnTheSens, @BSens_Hockey (Binghamton)

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Game #29: Albany at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton

Location: Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza, Wilkes-Barre, PA. Time: 7:00 PM.

Season Series:

First meeting. Future matchups: February 4th @ Wilkes-Barre; February 18th & March 31st @ Albany

Standings:

Albany, 12-11-3-2, 29 points, 3rd place in Northeast Division; Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, 16-8-1-4, 37 points, tied for 1st place in East Division

Leading Scorers:

Albany: Steve Zalewski, 17 points (8 G, 9 A); Matt Anderson, 16 points (5 G, 11 A); Joe Whitney, 14 points (6 G, 8 A)

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton: Colin McDonald, 24 points (8 G, 16 A); Bryan Lerg, 21 points (11 G, 10 A); Ben Street, 21 points (10 G, 11 A)

Goaltending:

Albany: Jeff Frazee, 4-8-2, 2.71 GAA; Keith Kinkaid, 7-6-0, 3.00 GAA

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton: Brad Thiessen, 11-7-2, 2.54 GAA; Scott Munroe, 5-2-2, 2.28 GAA

Following Along?

Radio: AHL Live (Albany); 102.3 The Mountain (Wilkes-Barre/Scranton)

Twitter: @AlbanyDevils (Albany); @nafsnep, @WBSPenguins, @MikeOBrienWBS (Wilkes-Barre/Scranton)

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Heartbreak, Train Wreck, and an Epic Shootout…

With 3 home games this week and the Devils’ recent success on said home ice, one would think this would be a pretty good week to gain some standings ground. Well, it didn’t exactly work out that way…the boys only earned 2 out of a possible 6 points and could not find their way to the win column. Let’s recap the week:

12/14 vs. Syracuse: 3-2 L (OT)

The Devils began the week with their second matchup of the season against their Thruway rivals, the Crunch. The biggest news of the day came during pregame warmup, when we looked up and saw Nick Palmieri had appeared on the ice, despite no announcement from New Jersey. First period was all Syracuse…they outshot the Devils 14-6 and scored a power play goal halfway through the period. Second period was another story, the Devils woke up and started throwing shots towards Crunch netminder Iiro Tarkki, but nothing could get past him. Jeff Frazee matched him save for save at the other end of the ice. Devils still trailed despite outshooting the Crunch 19-12 for the period. Finally, early in the third, the Devils figured out how to get a puck past Tarkki, taking a quick 2-1 lead on goals from Steve Zalewski and Vladmir Zharkov (just coming back to the lineup after an illness kept him out a couple of games). But less than 2 minutes later, a miscommunication by the net allowed Peter Holland to score the game tying goal. Nothing across through the rest of regulation…then came overtime. The Devils did well, outshooting the Crunch 4-2, but the Crunch’s second shot is one Jeff Frazee and the defense would probably like back. On a turnover with less than 1 second left (the clock read 00.4), Nick Bonino got a shot past Frazee to give the Crunch the win…and a heartbreaking defeat for Albany. Frazee stopped 35 of 38 shots in the loss.

12/16 vs. Worcester: 5-1 L

Another second matchup of the season, this one from an Atlantic Division rival in Worcester. For the first 1:16 of the game, it was all Devils…Steve Zalewski got one past San Jose goaltender Antero Niittymaki (on a conditioning stint) for an early 1-0 lead. Thirteen seconds later, Jack Combs, a recent PTO for the Sharks, tied the game at 1. After that, it was all down the drain for the hosts. Combs got his second of the period 10 minutes later to give Worcester the lead for good. The Sharks outshot the Devils by a 16-6 clip during the first. Second period came some fireworks between Stephane Veilleux and Sena Acolatse, but it didn’t get the offense going. Despite Albany outshooting the visitors 13-10, the Sharks tacked on two more goals (from Tommy Wingels and Marek Viedensky) to take a 4-1 lead. Wingels added one more goal during the 3rd to cap off the scoring…and the Devils simply did not have an answer on offense or defense. Keith Kinkaid took the loss in net, stopping 33 of 38 Worcester shots.

12/17 vs. Springfield: 2-1 L (SO)

The Devils finished up the week with a divisional matchup against the Falcons. First period was a scoreless duel between Jeff Frazee and veteran Manny Legace. Probably because everyone was too busy going in and out of the penalty box…referee Terry Koharski was, shall we say, a little whistle happy, giving the Falcons a 5 on 3 chance just 1 minute into the game and awarding Albany 4 power play opportunities. Second period the Falcons finally broke through and took a 1-0 lead on a Cam Atkinson goal. The Devils could have easily taken a lead, but Legace was up to the challenge, robbing Brad Mills not once, but twice on breakaway chances. Third period the Devils tied it up on a Darcy Zajac power play goal (there was 1 second left on said power play by the way). Then the penalty party started up again (a couple I did have to question…Mills had a clean check on a Falcon player but got called for boarding?), overall a total of 12 combined power plays on the night. Things carried over into overtime (let us pray, let us pray), this time the Devils survived without any last second goals (although I did get a little worried when Eric Gelinas had the puck with 10 seconds left…his turnover was what caused the winning goal on Wednesday), it was on to the shootout. And what an epic shootout it was. Atkinson and Chad Wiseman traded goals in Round 1. No goals in Round 2, then a controversy in Round 3: Alexandre Giroux thought the puck had crossed the line, but Frazee had it under his blocker just inches from going over. It was called no goal…but Giroux “respectfully” disagreed, following Koharski to center ice. Once he finally skated off, Matt Anderson took his turn and scored, 2-1 Devil lead. Scoreless round 4, then Maksim Mayorov scored in Round 5 to tie it up. Stephen Gionta couldn’t score the winner, so it was on to extra rounds. Rounds 6-8 were scoreless, then in Round 9 Ryan Garlock just barely gets one past Frazee to give the Falcons a lead. It was up to Eric Gelinas to keep it going…and he came through! After a scoreless Round 10, Brett Lebda scores to start off Round 11. It was up to Peter Harrold to keep it going…and Legace stopped him. Springfield took the game 2-1, with a 4-3 shootout win. Despite the loss, Frazee was outstanding, stopping 25 of 26 shots and earning #2 star honors (#1 went to his goaltending counterpart Legace, with 26 saves).

Notes:

-Only two roster moves this week. As mentioned earlier Wednesday Nick Palmieri made a surprise appearance in the lineup, New Jersey officially made the announcement Thursday morning. Friday Harry Young was recalled from Kalamazoo to fill in for a slighly depleted defense corps, with Matt Taormina and Alexander Urbom still up in New Jersey and Jay Leach, Matt Corrente, and Dan Kelly out of the lineup.

-Speaking of injuries, the MASH list: Steve Bernier will be out about 1-2 months with a broken hand. Matt Corrente is still out, no word on when he will return. Dan Kelly was sporting a splint on his nose Wednesday night, he could play with a full face shield but is being kept out anyway. Jay Leach did return Friday night but did not play last night. Myles Stoesz has one game to go on his suspension before being eligible to come back on Wednesday night (and I haven’t seen him since the fight, but have heard he has a pretty nasty shiner…)

Looking Ahead:

Only 2 games this week before the Christmas break begins. After today’s STH Holiday Skate, the boys board the bus for a Monday night matchup in Wilkes-Barre Township (as it’s officially called) against the Penguins. Then Wednesday is back home against Binghamton. Could be a tricky week, but I’m hoping for a good finish before the holiday.

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Game #28: Albany vs. Springfield

Location: Times Union Center, Albany, NY. Time: 7:00 PM.

Season Series:

Tied at 1.

Standings:

Springfield, 12-14-1-0, 25 points, 5th place in Northeast Division; Albany, 12-11-3-1, 28 points, 3rd place in Northeast Division

Leading Scorers:

Springfield: Martin St. Pierre, 29 points (6 G, 23 A); Cam Atkinson, 21 points (13 G, 8 A); Nick Drazenovic, 20 points (5 G, 15 A)

Albany: Steve Zalewski, 17 points (8 G, 9 A); Matt Anderson, 16 points (5 G, 11 A); Joe Whitney, 14 points (6 G, 8 A)

Goaltending:

Springfield: Manny Legace, 5-9-0, 2.37 GAA; Paul Dainton, 1-2-0, 4.30 GAA

Albany: Jeff Frazee, 4-8-1, 2.86 GAA; Keith Kinkaid, 7-6-0, 3.00 GAA

Following Along?

Radio: AHL Live (Albany); WHYN AM 560 (Springfield)

Twitter: myself, @AlbanyDevils, @Bill_Cain_ (Albany); @TheFalconsAHL, @MikeFalconsAHL (Springfield)

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