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Down on the Farm: Special Teams Playing Well For Syracuse

by Staff Writer / Columbus Blue Jackets
2005-06 RECORD: 25-15-2-1, 53 points

(13-5-1-0 home, 12-10-1-1 road), third place, North Division

Friday, Jan. 27 @ Rochester (21-20-1-1), 44 points,
fifth place, North Division
Radio: SportsRadio 620 WHEN, Internet: B2 Networks (
Saturday, Jan. 28 vs. Manitoba (27-13-3-2), 59 points,
second place, North Division
Radio: SportsRadio 620 WHEN, Internet: B2 Networks (
Sunday, Jan. 29 @ Bridgeport (21-20-2-2), 46 points,
tied-third place, East Division
Radio: SportsRadio 620 WHEN, Internet: B2 Networks (
*Radio station subject to change.

Wednesday, Jan. 18: WILKES-BARRE/SCRANTON 7, Crunch 2
Friday, Jan. 20: CRUNCH 3, Cleveland 1
Saturday, Jan. 21: CRUNCH 6, Cleveland 3

MAN-UP OR MAN-DOWN - CRUNCH DENTING THE TWINE: Through 43 games this season the Crunch are approaching or exceeding full season totals in both the power play and short-handed goal categories. Entering this week the Crunch have 64 power play goals, nine more than the entire 2002-03 season and just three short of 2004-05 (67 ppg) and four short of the 2003-04 (68 ppg) total. The club record for most short-handed goals in a season is 19 set during the 1998-99 campaign. Right wing Joe Motzko leads the Crunch with 12 power play tallies this season. Reggie Savage holds the individual record, scoring 20 power play goals in 2000-01.

The Crunch’s 10 short-handed goals this season has already surpassed their season totals from 2000-01 (9 shg), 1997-98 (8 shg), 2001-02 (8 shg) and 1998-99 (7 shg). The club record is 19, set during the 2002-03 season. Center Ben Simon leads the Crunch with three short-handed goals. Jarkko Ruutu (1999-00) and Matt Davidson (2002-03) share the franchise mark with four short-handed goals in a season. In addition to Simon (t-2nd), Geoff Platt (t-3rd) and Joakim Lindstrom (t-3rd) rank in the AHL’s top ten for short-handed tallies this season.

The following is complete listing of the Crunch’s power play and short-handed totals:
Season -- Power Play Goals -- Short-Handed Goals
1994-95 -- 82 – 11
1995-96 -- 80 -- 12
1996-97 -- 76 -- 11
1997-98 -- 88 -- 8
1998-99 -- 91 -- 7
1999-00 -- 71 -- 15
2000-01 -- 87 -- 9
2001-02 -- 72 -- 8
2002-03 -- 55 -- 19
2003-04 -- 68 -- 5
2004-05 -- 67 -- 10
2005-06* -- 64 -- 10
* through 43 games

HARTIGAN REASSIGNED TO SYRACUSE: The Syracuse Crunch announced today that the Columbus Blue Jackets have reassigned center Mark Hartigan to Syracuse.

Hartigan, 28, has appeared in 14 games with Columbus this season, recording one goal and 12 assists. In 29 games with Syracuse this season, Hartigan has tallied a team-high 43 points (17g, 26a). He is on a 13-game point streak (13g, 16a), two games shy of the franchise record for most consecutive games with a point. Hartigan continues to climb the Crunch’s all-time leaders list, moving into fourth on the power play goals list with 28. He is also fourth with 11 game-winning goals, fifth with 71 goals and seventh with 148 points. He has two hat tricks this season. A native of Fort St. John, British Columbia, Hartigan was re-signed as a free agent by Columbus August 22, 2005.

JOHNSON MATCHES ASSIST TOTAL: With an assist on Saturday, January 21, defenseman Aaron Johnson has tallied 17 assists in 32 games, matching his assist total from last season in 77 games. His 21 points thus far this season ties his point total from his 2003-04 rookie season and is two points shy of matching his career high.


ROCHESTER (BUFFALO SABRES): Syracuse travels to Rochester on Friday, January 27 for the fifth of 12 regular season games against the Amerks. Syracuse leads the series 3-1-0 after defeating Rochester 5-4 in their previous meeting on December 22 at Blue Cross Arena. Defenseman Andy Delmore (5a) leads all players in head-to-head scoring. Center Jiri Novotny (2g, 2a) and defenseman Nathan Paetsch ( 4a) lead all Rochester players with four points in head-to-head scoring. Goaltender Andrew Penner has a 2-0-0 record against Rochester. Rochester goaltender Michael Leighton has appeared in all four games for the Amerks posting a 1-3-0- record. Lifetime, the Crunch are 51-63-14 against the Amerks.

MANITOBA (VANCOUVER CANUCKS): Syracuse hosts Manitoba at the War Memorial at Oncenter on Saturday, January 28 for the third of four regular season games. The series is tied 1-1-0 after Syracuse beat Manitoba 7-4 on December 14 at the MTS Centre. Left wing Jason Jaffray (1g, 4a) and right wing Alexandre Burrows (1g, 4a) leads all players in head-to-head scoring with five points. Left wing Greg Mauldin (2g, 2a), center Brett Nowak (2g, 2a) and defenseman Andy Delmore (4a) lead the Crunch in head-to-head scoring with four points. Goaltender Mike Ayers posted the win for Syracuse, stopping 22 shots. Manitoba goaltender Wade Flaherty has appeared in both games. Lifetime, the Crunch are 4-5-1 against the Moose.

BRIDGEPORT (NEW YORK ISLANDERS): Syracuse travels to Bridgeport for the second and final of two regular season meetings. Syracuse defeated Bridgeport in their previous meeting this season 4-1 at the War Memorial at Oncenter. Centers Ben Simon (2g) and Geoff Platt (2a) lead all players in head-to-head scoring with two points. Defenseman Allan Rourke tallied the Sound Tigers lone goal. Goaltender Andrew Penner was credited with the win, recording 37 saves. Bridgeport goaltender Chris Madden recorded 32 saves in the loss. Lifetime, Syracuse is 1-2-2 against Bridgeport.

CRUNCHABLES: Goaltender Martin Prusek faced 84 shots on Friday and Saturday against Cleveland, allowing on four goals… Center Peter Sarno is one point shy of 300 in his AHL career… Joe Motzko’s hat trick on Saturday night was the fifth by a Crunch player this season (Hartigan -2, Sarno, Platt)… The 26 shots in the third period and the 48 total shots Syracuse faced on Saturday night were the most to date this season.

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