Crunch Weekly Roundup
Fri., Nov. 16 — Crunch vs. Hershey - W, 6-1
Sat., Nov. 17 — Crunch vs. Adirondack - W, 5-2
Sun., Nov. 18 — Crunch at Hershey - W, 5-3
Fri., Nov. 23 — Crunch vs. Binghamton, 7:30 p.m.
Sat., Nov. 24 — Crunch at Albany, 5:00 p.m.
Sun., Nov. 25 — Crunch at Worcester, 3:00 p.m.
Need to Know
- Sweeping a three-in-three in Week 6, the Crunch are 10-2-1-1 with an AHL-best .786 points percentage.
- Syracuse is the only AHL team without a regulation loss on the road (7-0-0-1).
- The Crunch are home Friday vs. Binghamton before visiting Albany Saturday and Worcester Sunday.
WEEK IN REVIEW
Syracuse snapped a three-game home winless streak Friday, beating the Hershey Bears, 6-1. Tyler Johnson opened the scoring 59 seconds into the contest to set the tone, but P.C. Labrie stole the show with with two fights, his first two goals of the season and first-star honors. Other multi-point performers included the game's second star Mark Barberio (1g, 1a) and third star Cory Conacher (2a). Brett Connolly scored his team-leading third power-play goal and Danick Gauthier scored his first professional goal to cap the scoring. Syracuse stopped both of Hershey's power-play chances, extending it's kill streak to five games (18 chances).
The Crunch beat the Phantoms, 5-2, Saturday after buildoing a 5-0 lead. Ten Crunch players made it onto the score sheet and P.C. Labrie again made an impression, scoring his third goal and third fight in two days. Cory Conacher, Ondrej Palat, and Brett Connolly added three more to chase starting goalie Cal Heeter from the game. Richard Panik added a fourth to make it 5-0. Riku Helenius earned his third win, making 24 saves.
The Crunch took leads of 1-0, 2-1 and 3-2 and held off the Bears, 5-3, Sunday in Hershey to claim their third straight win and a weekend sweep. Radko Gudas and Matt Taormina scored to put Syracuse ahead the first two times, and Hershey starting goale Dany Sabourin was replaced by Braden Holtby who gave up the last three goals to the Crunch, scored by Richard Panik, Brett Connolly and Tyler Johnson.
- Syracuse outscored its three Week 6 opponents 16-6. The last time Syracuse scored at least 16 goals in a three-game span was April 4-8, 2008, defeating Rochester at the War Memorial, 4-3, Rochester on the road, 10-3, and Lake Erie on the road, 4-2, a combined 18-8. The last time the Crunch posted at least five goals in three straight games was Jan. 29-Feb. 3, 2010, 5-4, 5-1 and 5-3 over San Antonio, Binghamton and Albany, respectively.
- With two assists and his first goal Sunday in Hershey, defenseman Radko Gudas registered his first career three-point game, earning first-star honors and doubling his scoring output for the season to six points (1g, 5a).
- The Crunch allow the fewest shots on goal per game in the American Hockey League, 23.93. The Crunch set a season best vs. Hershey Friday, holding the Bears to two shots in the first period.
- No team has won more than four straight road games this season, while the Crunch's active streak has surged to seven consecutive road wins. Syracuse is the only AHL team without a regulation loss on the road, only failing to record two points Oct. 12 in a 6-5 shootout loss in Rochester.
- Brett Connolly had five points (3g, 2a) in Week 6 (three games) to lead the team. With 12 points on the season (6g, 6a), the second-year pro is tied for fourth in scoring on the Crunch. His power-play tally Friday is his third of the year, tied for most on the team.
- Right wing Richard Panik has a seven-game scoring streak-second longest on the Crunch this season-with three goals and two assists in that span. His four points in Week 6 (2g, 2a) equaled his four point performance in Week 5. The 21-year-old's 12 points on the year (6g, 6a) are tied for fourth most on the team and he shares the team lead for game-winning goals with Mike Angelidis (2).
- Tyler Johnson has the most goals in the Eastern Conference, 10, and is tied for most in the AHL with three other players.
- Cory Conacher leads Syracuse in scoring with 17 points after posting four points (1g, 3a) in Week 6. He's tied for the Eastern Conference lead in scoring and tied for third in the AHL.
- Defenseman Mark Barberio eclipsed 100 career AHL points with his two-point effort Friday vs. Hershey.
- Dustin Tokarski is one of nine AHL netminders with a goals-against average under 2.00 while his seven victories are third most in the AHL.
- Dmitry Korobov leads the AHL in plus-minus with a plus-10 after a plus-3 in Week 6
- The Crunch lead the AHL in goals per game at 3.86, while allowing the eighth fewest, 2.71.
- The Crunch penalty kill is ranked fourth in the AHL, stopping 88.1% of opponents' power plays (74-for-84).
THE WEEK AHEAD
Crunch vs. Binghamton Senators—Friday, 7:30 p.m.
Syracuse pulled off the biggest comeback in franchise history the last time it faced East Division-rival Binghamton, overcoming a 5-0 deficit to beat the Senators, 6-5 in overtime, Oct. 20 at Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena. Richard Panik notched his first three points of the season, assisting on Syracuse's fourth goal (Ondrej Palat) and fifth goal (J.T. Wyman) before scoring the game-winner unassisted at 3:44 of the extra frame. The Senators (7-4-1-1) are six points behind the Crunch in the East, tied with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton for second in the division and fifth in the Eastern Conference. No Binghamton player has more than seven points despite the team's AHL-leading 33.85 shots per game. They also surrender the most shots, 35 on average, while Syracuse allows the fewest, 23.93. Goalie Robin Lehner (6-2-1), who fought Riku Helenius in the Oct. 20 meeting, has the sixth best GAA in the AHL, 1.77.
Crunch at Albany Devils—Saturday, 5 p.m.
The Devils host the Crunch for the second time this season Saturday at the Times Union Center. On Oct. 19, the Crunch came from behind to beat the Devils, 3-2. Albany built leads of 1-0 and 2-1, but two power play-goals got the Crunch even. Tyler Johnson, J.T. Brown and Mike Angelidis scored for Syracuse while Dustin Tokarski made 25 saves on 27 Devils shots. Suffering two shootout losses last week before beating St. John's Saturday, 5-3, Albany has just two wins in its last eight games and is fourth in the Northeast Division (4-5-0-4). Jacob Josefson leads the Devils with 10 points (6g, 4a) while Jeff Frazee (3-1-2) edges Keith Kincaid (1-4-2) in goals-against average, 2.12 to 2.39. Albany visits Rochester Friday night before returning home for the Crunch Saturday afternoon.
Crunch at Worcester Sharks—Sunday, 3 p.m.
Syracuse meets Worcester for the first of two time this season Sunday at the DCU Center. The Sharks pace the Atlantic Division at 7-6-1-1, one point better than second-place Manchester. After beating Portland on the road, 4-2, Wednesday, Worcester lost at home to Connecticut, 2-1, Saturday. The Sharks visit Portland Friday and host Manchester Saturday before Sunday's matinee with Syracuse. Tim Kennedy and Bracken Kearns lead the Sharks with 12 points each while goaltender Alex Stalock (7-3-1) has played the bulk of minutes over Harri Sateri (0-4-1).The Crunch's next and final meeting with Worcester is the regular season's penultimate affair, Apr. 20.