St. John's Maple Leafs Game 64: Preview and Review: Sat. Mar. 13th, 2004
It is Saturday, March 13th, 2004.
One would have to expect that it was a long bus ride to Syracuse for the members of the St. John's Maple Leafs. One would suspect that you could hear a pin drop on the bus ride because there weren't many positives to take out of the game against the Roadrunners Friday night. The Leafs did not get off to a good start on this weekend road trip but hopefully it will not affect the teams play tonight and Sunday (wishful thinking on my part). The Leafs have to win and win often...nothing else has to be said...win and your chances of getting in are good, lose and there is no chance in hell of making the playoffs...an understatement to say the least. The thing that bugs me about the Leafs is that they do have a good team on paper, but for some reason they can not put it together on the ice on a more consistant bases. Hard to watch games at Mile One and listen to games on the radio when they play like that. Tonight's game will be the fourth meeting of the season between the Leafs and Crunch. The first meeting was a 2-1 Crunch win in Syracuse, the second meeting was a 4-3 Leafs win at Mile One Stadium and the third meeting was a 4-2 Crunch win at Mile One Stadium. Game Time is 7:30 p.m. Eastern (9:00 p.m. Newfoundland Time).
The Leafs with the loss last night have dropped to 25-28-7-3 overall, 12-14-2-3 on the road, 4-3-2-1 in their Last-10 and they are now winless in two, both losses coming to the Roadrunners. The Leafs have scored 174 goals and given up 203. The Leafs are 49-for-319 on the PP (15.36%) and they have given up 64 PPGA on 309 TSH (79.29%). The Leafs are currently in last place in the North Division with 60 points....disappointing for sure.
Leafs Leading Scorers:
Aaron Gavey 18-32-50
Kyle Wellwood 14-29-43
Harold Druken 19-23-42
Leafs Goaltending Statistics:
Sebastien Centomo 11-13-3 with a 2.82 GAA and a .911 SPCT
Mikael Tellqvist 9-11-1 with a 2.72 GAA and a .916 SPCT
Mike Minard might be pressed into action if the injury to Tellqvist is serious.
Leafs PIM Leader:
Kris Newbury 128 PIM in 57 games.
The Crunch have played well this season and through 64 games they have an overall record of 30-19-10-5. The Crunch are 16-7-6-3 at home, 4-2-2-2 in their Last-10 and they are unbeaten in four games with a 3-0-1-0 record. The Crunch are coming off of a 5-2 win over the Albany River Rats. The Crunch have scored 184 goals this season and have given up 176. The Crunch are 56-for-325 on the PP (17.23%) and they have given up 47 PPGA on 330 TSH (85.76%). The Crunch are currently in second place in the North Division with 75 points.
Crunch Leading Scorers:
Donald MacLean 21-37-55
Brad Moran 20-26-46
Mark Hartigan 20-18-38
Crunch Goaltending Statistics:
Pascal Leclaire 18-12-3 with a 2.90 GAA and a .920 SPCT
Karl Goehring 12-10-6 with a 2.34 GAA and a .925 SPCT
Crunch PIM Leader:
Brandon Sugden 248 PIM in 51 games.
Another Loss...Suspect Goaltending...Mistakes Costly!
The St. John's Maple Leafs dropped a 5-3 decision to the Syracuse Crunch Saturday night at the War Memorial at Oncenter. The Leafs gave up goals early and late in the first period, they traded a pair of goals in the second period and each scored a goal in the third with the Leafs on the wrong end of a 5-3 final. With the loss the Leafs are now 25-29-7-3 overall, 12-15-2-3 on the road and winless in their last three games. The Leafs playoff hopes are really slim at this point and it is going to take a miracle for this club to make the post season.
The game did not get off to a good start for the Blue and White and especially goaltender Sebastien Centomo. Defencemen Pierre Hedin can be included here as well because he failed to get the red line and iced the puck on the first play of the game. That led to a faceoff in the Leafs zone and to the first goal of the game. The Crunch scored just 15 seconds into the contest when Brad Moran won the faceoff clean and Darrel Scoville scored his 8th of the season, with Moran and Jeremy Reich getting the assists on the goal. To make matters worse it was the first shot on Sebastien Centomo who has struggled as of late. The Leafs fall behind early and it is not a good sign or the start that they wanted. The teams would trade chances over the course of the period but it was the Crunch that would find the back of the net again. The Crunch made it 2-nothing when Mark Hartigan scored his 19th of the season, unassisted at the 19:14 mark. The goal came as a result of a turnover by Leafs rookie rearguard Brendan Bell. Shots in the first period were 9-9. Two goals on nine shots against Centomo is not good.
If I never heard it on the radio I would not have believed it but the Crunch took a 3-nothing lead just 8 seconds into the second period and on their first shot of the period. Unbelievable if you ask me! A disappointing start for Centomo giving up three goals on 10 shots. The Crunch third goal came off the stick of Jeremy Reich, his 9th of the season, with the assists to Brad Moran and Darrel Scoville. How many times to you see that in a hockey game a team scoring on their first shot of the game and their first shot of the second period. The Crunch would open a 4-nothing lead at the 3:57 mark when Mike Pandolfo scored his 17th of the season, with the assists to Zenith Komarniski and Paul Traynor. The goal was a result of a turnover by the Maple Leafs, who I am not exactly sure, but a Leafs turnover all the same. The Leafs looked to be down and out and rightfully so considering the way things have gone as of late but to their credit they continued to battle. The Leafs finally got on the board when Brad Leeb scored his 19th of the season, with the assists to Aaron Gavey and Chris Chartier at the 8:17 mark on the PP. Great to see Leeb scoring a PP marker. The Leafs would get another PPG and make it a 4-2 game at the 10:47 mark when rearguard Chris Chartier scored his 3rd of the season, with the lone assist to Aaron Gavey. According to the broadcast Chartier just threw the puck on goal and it beat Goehring, that is all you have to do is get the puck towards the goal where anything can happen. Great to see Chartier getting in on the scoring. The Crunch would take the 4-2 lead to the second intermission. Shots in the second period were 11-8 Syracuse, 20-17 in favor of the Crunch after 40-minutes.
The Leafs would get to within one when Randy Rowe scored his 2nd of the season, with the lone assist to Ben Ondrus at the 11:57 mark. The Crunch held the 4-3 lead for most of the period and then the Leafs pulled goaltender Sebastien Centomo for the extra attacker but to no avail. The Crunch hit the empty net at the 18:55 mark when Kent McDonell scored his 11th of the season, an unassisted empty net marker. Game over for the Leafs and playoff hopes fading quickly. Shots in the third period were 14-12 Leafs, 32-31 in favor of the Crunch in the game.
The 3 Stars were all from the Crunch.
Mikael Tellqvist (I), Nathan Barrett (I), Clarke Wilm (I) and Carlo Colaiacovo (I).
Sebastien Cemtomo drops to 11-14-3, 27 saves.
The Leafs went 2-for-5 on the PP.
The Crunch went 0-for-3 on the PP.
Next Action: Sunday, March 14th, 2004 against the Rochester Americans
Feel badly for the folks on the East Coast, when your team is put together by Mike Penny you go in with your two hands tied behind your back. It's a shame other than the Baby Leafs first year when they had Potvin, the fans in nfdl have been ripped off. Hopefully Ferguson will wake up and fire the stumble bum and all his Vancouver rejects he's brought down East. Burke got rid of him and all his draft pick busts.