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Avalanche Farm Report: Oct. 12

by Aaron Lopez / Colorado Avalanche
Spotlight On: Julian Talbot

The Lake Erie Monsters have jumped out to a 2-0 start for the second time in the club’s four-year history, and forward Julian Talbot has played a big role in the team’s early success.

Talbot was acquired by the Colorado Avalanche from the St. Louis Blues organization on June 17, 2010 in exchange for forward T.J. Hensick. The Wahnapitae, Ontario native had spent the past three seasons with the American Hockey League’s Peoria Rivermen, totaling 125 points (61g/64a) in 219 contests.

The 6-foot, 185-pound center made a quick impression, scoring the game-tying goal on Friday during his first contest as a Monster – a 3-2 win against the Syracuse Crunch at Quicken Loans Arena. The following night, he scored Lake Erie’s only regulation goal in a 2-1 shootout victory over Syracuse.

To go along with his two goals, Talbot has registered a +2 plus/minus rating and six shots on goal through Lake Erie’s first two games.
Lake Erie Monsters
Colorado’s American Hockey League affiliate opened its season in style, winning both ends of a home-and-home series against the Syracuse Crunch.

Friday’s home opener at Quicken Loans Arena ended with a 3-2 Lake Erie victory after Matt Ford netted the game-winning goal with 2:58 remaining in regulation. Justin Mercier and Julian Talbot also scored as the Monsters erased a 2-0 deficit midway through the contest. Jason Bacashihua made 13 saves to claim the victory.

The Monsters and Crunch met up again Saturday in Syracuse, and a shootout was needed to settle the score. Ben Walter and Kevin Shattenkirk both scored in the shootout and John Grahame stopped all four Crunch attempts to lead Lake Erie to a 2-1 victory. Talbot scored the Monsters’ lone goal in regulation, while Grahame earned the win after stopping 17 shots.

The Monsters will be off until Oct. 16, when they begin a six-game, nine-day road trip by facing the Oklahoma City Barons.

-Boston University’s Kieran Millan picked up a victory in his first start of the season. The junior netminder turned aside 24 shots as Boston University topped Wisconsin by a 4-3 score Friday at the IceBreaker Tournament in St. Louis.

-Minnesota goaltender Kent Patterson received his first start of the season and responded, making 32 saves in the Gophers’ 5-4 win over the University of Massachusetts on Saturday.

-Brad Malone opened the game’s scoring with a power-play goal during North Dakota’s 5-5 tie with Alaska Anchorage on Friday at the Kendall Hockey Classic in Anchorage.

-Troy Rutkowski netted a power-play goal and had a +3 plus/minus rating as the Winterhawks topped Everett, 5-3, last Wednesday.  The defenseman added an assist during Friday’s 3-2 win over Spokane and now owns five points (2g/3a) in eight contests.

-Saskatoon defenseman Stefan Elliott recorded an assist last Wednesday in a 5-3 win over Tri-City and then had a goal and a +4 plus/minus rating in the Blades’ 6-4 triumph over Moose Jaw on Friday. Elliott has totaled five points (2g/3a) and a +5 plus/minus rating in six games this season.

-Calvin Pickard earned a victory in the Seattle Thunderbirds’ lone game this past week, a 6-3 win against Chilliwack on Saturday evening. Pickard made 29 stops in the game to improve his record to 4-2 on the season.

-Belleville defenseman Stephen Silas was credited with an assist on the eventual game-winning goal during the Bulls’ 4-3 triumph over Sarnia on Saturday. Silas leads all Belleville blueliners with three points (0g/3a) in seven contests.

-Kitchener goalie Brandon Maxwell picked up a win in each of his two appearances last week. Maxwell came on in relief during Friday’s game against Barrie with his team trailing 3-1 at the time. The netminder proceeded to stop 19 of 21 shots over the final 29:04 of the game to lead the Rangers to a 7-5 victory. Maxwell got the starting nod on Saturday and made 33 stops in a 6-5 victory over Erie. The Winter Park, Fla., native has posted a 4-1 record with a .911 save percentage in five outings.

-Michael Bournival, who is serving as captain of the Shawinigan Cataractes this season, had points in both of his club’s games this past week. The winger netted an assist on Friday in a 6-3 loss to Rimouski and then netted his second goal of the season in Saturday’s 4-2 defeat at the hands of Acadie-Bathurst. Bournival ranks third on Shawinigan’s scoring chart with eight points (2g/6a) in eight games.
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