Week 9 Recap: It’s Like Deja Vu All Over Again

Another three game week, another three wins.  Wait, didn’t we just do this last week?  The juggernaut rolls on.

12/2 vs. St. John’s: 2-1 W (OT)

Reid Boucher
Reid Boucher

The December slate started up on Wednesday evening, as the Devils hosted new division rival St. John’s for the first time this season.  It didn’t take long for the Devils to capitalize on their first power play of the game midway through the first period…just 8 seconds after the call, Mike Sislo would score his 12th of the season (league leading 8th on the PP) for a 1-0 lead.  But just 20 seconds later, the IceCaps would tie it up on a Gabriel Dumont tally.  After that…both teams would shut it down defensively, as once again the Devil defense limited the opponent to single digit shots per period.  But the special teams were put to the test with 5:04 left in the second…Dan Kelly was assessed a match penalty when he bumped into the IceCaps’ Jeremy Gregoire, and his elbow made contact with Gregoire’s head, giving St. John’s a 5 minute power play.  No problems for the #1 penalty kill in the AHL, especially after a full 4 on 4 interrupted it.  Albany thought they had taken the lead early in the third period, but the referee waved it off after a video review.  They had another chance to win it towards the end of regulation and into the beginning of overtime with a power play chance, but a few robberies by St. John’s goaltender Dustin Tokarski kept things tied up.  Finally, with 1:04 separating the Devils from their first shootout of the season, Paul Thompson sent everyone home happy with the game winner, his 6th of the year, extending the Devils win streak to 4 games.  Yann Danis picked up his league leading 12th win of the season, only having to stop 17 of 18 shots.  Marc Andre Gragnani added assists on both goals, and Corey Tropp was a goal shy of a Gordie Howe hat trick.

Corey Tropp drops the gloves...
Corey Tropp drops the gloves…

The Lineup:

Mike Sislo-Matt Lorito-Corey Tropp

Reid Boucher-Max Novak-Paul Thompson

Blake Pietila-Ryan Kujawinski-Ben Thomson

Pierre-Luc Leblond-Rod Pelley-Greg Wolfe

Dan Kelly/Marc Andre Gragnani

Seth Helgeson/Vojtech Mozik

Brandon Burlon/Corbin McPherson

Yann Danis/Doug Carr

Out: Scott Wedgewood, Joseph Blandisi, Blake Coleman, Jim O’Brien, Chris McKelvie, Graham Black, Reece Scarlett, Raman Hrabarenka, Joe Faust, Alexandre Carrier

Power Play: 1 for 5. Penalty Kill: 5 for 5. Penalty Minutes: 21. Shots on Goal: 38. Shots Allowed: 18.

Highlights:

Friday: It may have been an offday on the schedule, but it was still a busy day in the Capital Region:

-The AHL suspended Dan Kelly for one game as a result of Wednesday’s match penalty, forcing him to sit for Saturday afternoon.

-And the Devils and Thunder swapped goalies, as Ken Appleby returned to Albany and Scott Wedgewood was sent to Adirondack to get him some playing time after sitting out since the first week of the season.  More on his season debut later.

Saturday: The goaltender swap transaction from the day before?  Reverse it.

12/5 vs. Rochester: 2-1 W

Max Novak
Max Novak

Like everyone else around the league, it was Star Wars Night at the arena, as the Devils played host to the Americans for the first time in over two years.  And things got going in a hurry…just 2:34 into the game and on a power play, Max Novak would score his first as a professional for an early 1-0 advantage.  In the second period, some team history…on the Devils second power play of the game, Mike Sislo would light the lamp for a 2-0 lead.  It was his 28th career power play goal, passing Niclas Bergfors on the all time franchise list (combined Albany/Lowell, going back to 2006).  After giving up 13 shots through the first two periods, the Amerks woke up in the third and actually made Yann Danis work.  Brady Austin would cut the lead in half early in the third with his first goal of the season.  But despite being outshot (?!?) 11-6 in the third, the Devils would hold on and pick up their fifth win in a row.  Danis had another relatively easy day in net, stopping 23 of 24 shots.  Matt Lorito would add two assists, while Joseph Blandisi returned to the lineup and picked up a helper as well.

Devil Dawg helping with the annual Teddy Bear Toss
Devil Dawg helping with the annual Teddy Bear Toss

The Lineup:

Matt Lorito-Joseph Blandisi-Mike Sislo

Reid Boucher-Max Novak-Paul Thompson

Ben Thomson-Blake Pietila-Corey Tropp

Pierre-Luc Leblond-Rod Pelley-Ryan Kujawinski

Marc Andre Gragnani/Reece Scarlett

Seth Helgeson/Vojtech Mozik

Brandon Burlon/Corbin McPherson

Yann Danis/Doug Carr

Out: Scott Wedgewood, Dan Kelly, Blake Coleman, Jim O’Brien, Chris McKelvie, Graham Black, Raman Hrabarenka, Joe Faust, Alexandre Carrier, Greg Wolfe

Power Play: 2 for 2.  Penalty Kill: 4 for 4.  Penalty Minutes: 8.  Shots on Goal: 30.  Shots Allowed: 24.

Highlights:

Sunday: With a few bodies getting healthy, Joe Faust and Alexandre Carrier were sent back up the Northway to Adirondack.

12/6 vs. Syracuse: 4-0 W

Scott Wedgewood returns! And the Puddy mask matches the holiday jersey too!
Scott Wedgewood returns! And the Puddy mask matches the holiday jersey too!

Sporting alternate jerseys for the first time, well, ever, the Devils looked to extend their winning streak against division rival Syracuse.  After a physical beginning (which is the norm when Albany and Syracuse get together), Reid Boucher capitalized on the Devils first power play of the game, scoring his 10th goal halfway through the first period for a 1-0 advantage.  Just 57 seconds after the second period began, Dan Kelly celebrated his return to the lineup after a one game suspension with his first goal of the season to double the lead.  Joseph Blandisi would triple the lead late in the period with a power play goal, his 7th of the season, chasing Syracuse starter Adam Wilcox out of the net after 2 periods in favor of Kristers Gudlevskis.  And to top it off…Max Novak scored his second goal in as many days early in the third to seal a sixth straight win, tying a team record and capping off another perfect week.  Yann Danis stopped all 23 shots to pick up his 4th shut0ut of the season, tying a team record for a season (Jeff Frazee had 4 with Lowell in 2008-2009).  Mike Sislo had three assists, while Marc Andre Gragnani added two helpers.

Brandon Burlon
Brandon Burlon

The Lineup:

Matt Lorito-Joseph Blandisi-Mike Sislo

Reid Boucher-Max Novak-Corey Tropp

Ben Thomson-Blake Pietila-Ryan Kujawinski

Pierre Luc Leblond-Rod Pelley-Greg Wolfe

Seth Helgeson/Vojtech Mozik

Dan Kelly/Marc Andre Gragnani

Brandon Burlon/Corbin McPherson

Yann Danis/Scott Wedgewood

Out: Blake Coleman, Jim O’Brien, Paul Thompson, Chris McKelvie, Graham Black, Reece Scarlett, Raman Hrabarenka, Doug Carr

Power Play: 2 for 4. Penalty Kill: 6 for 6. Penalty Minutes: 29. Shots on Goal: 24. Shots Allowed: 23.

Highlights:

My Player of the Week:

Setting a new record for power play goals and having a 5 point week?  Is there anything Mike Sislo can’t do?

Team Leaders:

Goals: Mike Sislo (13)

Assists: Matt Lorito (17)

Points: Mike Sislo (22)

+/-: Vojtech Mozik (+16)

Penalty Minutes: Joseph Blandisi (43)

Wins: Yann Danis (14)

GAA: Yann Danis (1.67)

Save Percentage: Yann Danis (.931)

The Vault:

From exactly 4 years ago…another reason to love Corey Tropp:

Up North with the Thunder:

A 2-0 week for Adirondack against division rival Brampton, thanks to the help of two Devil goaltenders.  Ken Appleby pitched his second shutout of the season on Thursday, a 4-0 win, stopping all 29 Beast shots.  He is now 10-2-0-1 with a 1.83 GAA and a .937 save percentage.  Scott Wedgewood had a shaky start to his season debut on Friday in Glens Falls, giving up a goal just 11 seconds into the contest.  He found himself in a 2-0 hole after one period, having to face 19 shots in the first 20 minutes of the game.  But he settled down nicely after that, stopping all 22 shots faced in the final two periods, and the Thunder came back with 5 unanswered goals to pick up their 14th win 5-2 and maintain a 3 point lead over second place Manchester in the East Division.  Coming up this week: a three in three weekend, as Adirondack hosts Norfolk on Friday and Manchester on Saturday, then travel to New Hampshire on Sunday afternoon to complete a home and home with the Monarchs.

This Week’s Schedule:

A relatively easy two game week on paper, but there will be a test involved.  Friday night the homestand wraps up with the second visit of the week from the Crunch.  Then it’s southwest to Wilkes-Barre the following night to start a 4 game pre-Christmas road swing to take on the #2 team in the league, the Penguins.  Also this week: the annual season ticket holder Holiday Skate with the team, I may have a few tidbits coming from that.

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s