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Farm Report: Races Heating Up

by Aaron Lopez / Colorado Avalanche
The Lake Erie Monsters earned a 2-1 win over the Quad City Flames on Saturday (March 22) evening. Chris Stewart and Wyatt Smith each recorded a goal and one assist, while Eric Healey chipped in with a pair of helpers.

Michael Wall stopped 24-of-25 shots to earn the victory in goal. Wall, who has won five of his last six starts for the Monsters, moved his record to 12-12-4 on the season. He currently leads all Lake Erie goaltenders in wins, save percentage (.915) and goals-against average (2.92).

The Monsters have four games on tap this week, beginning tonight (March 25) against Manitoba.

-University of Michigan netminder Billy Sauer stopped 18 shots in the Wolverines’ 6-4 win over Northern Michigan University in the CCHA Tournament Semifinals before posting 27 saves in a 2-1 victory over Miami (Ohio) University in the championship game. Sauer and the Wolverines earned the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament and will begin the event by facing Niagara University in the East Regional, held in Albany, N.Y.

-Derek Peltier recorded two assists on Thursday against St. Cloud State University to help lead the University of Minnesota to a 3-2 win at the WCHA Final Five. Mike Carman then assisted on the game-winner in the Gophers’ 2-1 overtime victory against Colorado College on Friday. The win gave the Gophers a berth in the WCHA Tournament Championship Game, where the squad ultimately fell to the University of Denver. Minnesota garnered the No. 3 seed in the Northeast Regional in Worcester, Mass., and will take on Boston College in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.

-University of North Dakota freshman Brad Malone assisted on Chay Genoway’s game-winning goal – Malone’s second helper of the season – in the Fighting Sioux’s 4-2 win over Colorado College in the WCHA Tournament’s Consolation Game. North Dakota earned the No. 1 seed in the Midwest Regional, to be played in Madison, Wis., where the team will face Princeton University in the first round.

-Miami (Ohio) University forward Justin Mercier was named a finalist for the CCHA’s Defensive Forward of the Year Award, but was edged out by Michigan State’s Justin Abdelkader. Mercier and the RedHawks will be the No. 1 seed in the Northeast Regional and will face off against Air Force Academy in the opening round.

-Boston University defensemen Kevin Shattenkirk and Colby Cohen each posted an assist in a 3-1 loss to the University of Vermont in the Hockey East Semifinals – a game which ended the Terriers’ season. Shattenkirk was named to Hockey East’s 2007-08 Pro Ambitions All-Rookie Team after totaling 21 points (4g/17a) in 40 games during his freshman year.

The Belleville Bulls, the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference, opened the 2008 OHL Playoffs with a 4-1 win over the Peterborough Petes on Wednesday. Nigel Williams recorded a goal in the victory, while Trevor Cann made 29 saves for the Petes in a losing effort.

The Petes rallied back for a 5-4 overtime victory on Thursday, with Cann picking up the win after making 51 stops. The Bulls then took a 2-1 lead in the series with a 4-3 win on Saturday. Williams tallied an assist for Belleville, while Cann made 45 saves for Peterborough.

Belleville extended its series lead to 3-1 Monday night with a 3-2 overtime triumph. Williams notched a short-handed goal in the second period for the Bulls, while Cann stopped 45 of the 48 shots he faced for the Petes. Belleville can finish off the series with a victory Tuesday night.

-The London Knights, holding the No. 4 seed in the Western Conference, dropped the first two games of their playoff series with the Guelph Storm. Kevin Montgomery notched an assist for London in Friday’s 3-2 loss, while Guelph earned a 4-1 win on Saturday. The teams will resume their best-of-seven series on Tuesday evening.

-Ian Keserich posted his first shutout of the year Thursday – stopping all 33 shots he faced – in the Mississippi RiverKings’ 1-0 victory over Oklahoma City. On Saturday, the netminder won his second straight decision by making 32 saves in a 6-1 win over Corpus Christi. In 21 games with Mississippi, Keserich has posted a 13-7-1 record with a 2.64 goals-against average and a .916 save percentage.

-Calgary forward T.J. Galiardi posted two assists during the Hitmen’s 5-1 win over Moose Jaw on Friday. The Warriors came back to earn a 4-2 win over the Hitmen on Saturday to even their series at 1-1, with Galiardi adding another assist. The teams resume their best-of-seven series on Tuesday.

-Kent Patterson won his third straight decision Saturday, stopping 29-of-31 shots in a 5-2 Cedar Rapids victory over the Tri-City Storm. The victory improved Patterson’s record to 9-5-0 this season.

-Paul Carey scored his league-leading 33rd goal of the season – which doubled as his USHL-best 15th power-play goal –in the Indiana Ice’s 5-3 loss to Chicago on Saturday. Carey ranks fifth in the league with 61 points (33g/28a) in 54 games.

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