4/18 Recap: Amerks offense clicking at right time

Five different players provided goals, and Andrey Makarov (No. 2 star) stopped 22 of 23 shots to extend his winning streak to seven straight starts as Rochester downed in-state rival Syracuse 5-1 Friday in the 2013-14 home finale at Blue Cross Arena. Veteran forward Brayden Irwin (No. 1 star) and Phil Varone (No. 3 star) each contributed a goal and an assist, while Tim Schaller, Luke Adam and Nick Deslauriers supplied single markers.

Schaller, fresh off being named the Amerks' Most Improved Player prior to the opening faceoff, opened scoring at 7:44 when he finished off a Colton Gillies feed for his ninth goal of the season.

Rochester would get another goal at 11:04 when Adam stole the puck from Crunch netminder Cedrick Desjardins following a misplayed Dan Catenacci dump-in. The marker was Adam's team-leading 29th of the season.

Just under two minutes later, Irwin sent the Amerks to the dressing room with a 3-0 first intermission lead when he cashed a power play chance down low. Irwin, who draw a secondary helper on the Schaller marker, has 13 points in his last nine games.

Rochester would keep the goals coming early into period two, as Deslauriers scored his first in an Amerks uniform to extend the lead to 4-0 in the 23nd minute. Kevins Porter and Sundher would pick up assists on the play, which quickly prompted Crunch bench boss Rob Zettler to call a timeout to have some words with his group.

Syracuse would eventually score off a three-on-one rush at 3:33 of the third, but the Amerks would eventually restore the four-goal lead with less than five minutes to play when Varone redirected a Johan Larsson centering feed for the game's final tally.

Makarov has been a revelation for the Sabres organization of late, winning all seven of his April starts while compiling a 1.98 GAA and .931 save%.

Chad Ruhwedel earned an assist in his return the Amerks blueline after suffering a mild concussion during his stay in Buffalo, while Joel Armia remained out of the lineup for the second consecutive game due to illness.

The Amerks conclude regular season play Saturday afternoon in Toronto. 

In the USHL, Connor Hurley produced three shots on goal as the Green Bay Gamblers were eliminated from the playoffs with a 1-0 loss to Indiana in Game 4 of the best-of-five Eastern Conference semifinal. Hurley finishes postseason play with four points (2+2), all of which came in the Gamblers' Game 2 victory.

Also from the USHL East, Judd Peterson (injured) did not play as Cedar Rapids was blanked by Dubuque 1-0 in Game 3 of their semifinal tilt. The Roughriders will look to avoid elimination when the two clubs go back at it on Saturday.
Next Post »