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Crunch Report: December 1, 2009

by Blue Jackets Staff / Columbus Blue Jackets

2009-10 RECORD: 8-11-2-2, 20 points, (6-2-1-1 home, 2-9-1-1 road), sixth place, East Division

Friday, December 4 @ Binghamton (11-9-2-1, 25 points), second place, East Division
Saturday, December 5 vs. Binghamton (11-9-2-1, 25 points), second place, East Division

Wednesday, November 25 @ Albany - ALBANY 4, Crunch 2
Friday, November 27 vs. Houston, - CRUNCH 4, Houston 3 SO
Saturday, November 28 @ WB/S - Crunch 4, WB/S 3
Sunday, November 29 vs. Rochester - Rochester 7, CRUNCH 4


Left Wing Bates Battaglia appeared in all four games for the Crunch this past week, notching five points (3g, 2a) and helped the club to a 2-2-0-0 record. He recorded his first goal and point as a member of the Crunch Wednesday night in Albany, scoring on a breakaway on River Rats goalie Mike Murphy in the first period.

He tallied his first multi-point game as a member of the Crunch with a two-point (1g, 1a) effort in Saturday's 4-3 win in Wilkes-Barre and registered a plus-2 rating in that contest, earning third star of the game honors. Battaglia capped off his week with a second straight two-point (1g, 1a) game in a 7-4 loss to Rochester Sunday afternoon at the War Memorial at Oncenter. For his effort, he was named the game's second star.

Since being signed by the Crunch to a PTO on November 19, Battaglia has appeared in six games and notched five points (3g, 2a). A native of Chicago, Illinois, Battaglia has appeared in 248 combined American Hockey League games with New Haven, Toronto (Marlies) and the Crunch, racking up 67 goals, 118 assists and 231 penalty minutes. In addition, he has skated in 580 NHL games with Carolina, Colorado and Toronto, accumulating 80 goals, 118 assists and 385 penalty minutes.

A staggering statistic that stands out when you look at the Crunch's season thus far is the club's record home and away. On the road, the Crunch are just 2-9-1-1 in 13 games and have been outscored by a 52-24 margin.

Part of that can be attributed to the fact that Syracuse has converted on just six of 58 power play opportunities on the road, a 10.3 % success rate. The Crunch have also allowed 15 power play goals on 68 attempted kills, a 77.9% success rate, ranking 22nd out of 29 AHL teams in penalty killing on the road.

At the other end of the spectrum, the Crunch are 6-2-1-1 in 10 home games and have made the War Memorial at Oncenter a tough place to play for opposing teams. Syracuse has done well killing penalties on home ice, denying 44 of 50 chances, good for an 88.0% success rate, ranking 11th in the league in that category. Over the past three seasons, the Crunch have compiled a 58-22-5-5 record at the War Memorial at Oncenter.

The Syracuse Crunch have had to scratch and claw for seemingly every win this season and have shown a lot of resilience when the score is close. The Crunch are 6-0-2-2 in one-goal games, picking up two more one-goal victories this weekend with a 4-3 shootout win over Houston Friday and a 4-3 regulation win vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Saturday.


The Crunch look ahead to a home-and-home series with the B-Sens this weekend. Syracuse travels to Binghamton on Friday night to take on the Senators at the Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena. This will be the first meeting between these two teams since they met twice in the season's first three weeks. The Crunch were on the losing end of a 6-2 decision at Binghamton on October 9 and defeated the Senators by a 4-3 count at the War Memorial at Oncenter on October 23. Brent Regner (1g, 1a), David Liffiton (0g, 2a), Maksim Mayorov (0g, 2a) and Pascal Pelletier (0g, 2a) have all tallied two points for the Crunch, while Binghamton's Josh Hennessy (1g, 2a) and Erik Condra (0g, 3a) lead all players with three points in the season series. Dan LaCosta and Mike Brodeur have started both games for their respective teams.


Syracuse fell to 0-4-2-0 against Rochester after Sunday's loss… Kevin Lalande started his fifth straight game and third in three days Sunday… Pascal Pelletier appeared in his 300th AHL game Sunday vs. Rochester… The Crunch won back-to-back games for the first time all season with wins over Houston Friday and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Saturday… Syracuse has been scored on first in 15 of 23 games this year… Dan Fritsche is tied for the league lead with two shorthanded assists.

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