After 2 games…well, there’s a lot to work on. But after today’s matchup the Devils look like they’re starting to turn the corner. Time for a recap of the weekend’s events:
Game 1, 10/8 vs. Springfield: 6-3 L
Albany started off on the right foot, but defensive breakdowns became the downfall of this night. Darcy Zajac notched the season’s first tally early on in the first, but the Falcons struck back, scoring 4 unanswered goals on Jeff Frazee. A few friends who were sitting by the glass noticed that the defensemen could be seen arguing on ice setting up the play, not a good thing whether it’s game 1 or game 41. The guys did get back on track in the 3rd, but by then it was too late to play catchup. Matt Corrente and Matt Anderson did add goals of their own and the Devils did outshoot Springfield 30-24. You couldn’t blame Frazee for the goals given up, he did well considering the circumstances. There was a scare with him in the 3rd after giving up the Falcons 5th goal, he was favoring his right (catching) arm after the play, but stuck it out for the remainder.
Game 2, 10/9 vs. Bridgeport: 4-2 L
Today came the anticipated debut of rookie goaltender Keith Kinkaid, and he did not disappoint. However he had one nemesis all afternoon in net: Justin DiBenedetto. He was the only Sound Tiger to solve him, scoring a natural hat trick. If it weren’t for him, Kinkaid could have easily had the shutout in his debut. But all he gets for the effort is a loss and 19 saves. Chad Wiseman scored his first of the year (sadly no Mikko Koskinen for him to score 4 goals on this time around; today was the first start for rookie Anders Nilsson, who also played solid with 28 saves), and the highlight of the afternoon came in the 3rd courtesy of Mike Sislo’s first professional tally, a penalty shot. Defense was much improved compared to the night before, but still not enough to get the win. Sean Backman added the empty netter with 12 seconds left to seal the win for Bridgeport.
Next weekend is the first 3 in 3 weekend of the season, luckily the Devils don’t have to go too far. Friday night at home the Whale come calling (question of the hour: will Sean Avery show up? He’s listed on the roster, but has yet to make an appearance), Saturday is the first road game of the year in Worcester against the Sharks, and Sunday is a home matchup against the defending Calder Cup champions from Binghamton. I will definitely be at the two home games, and possibly making the trip to Worcester (as long as work obligations don’t hold me back. Translation: I get out on time) on Saturday.