2007-08 RECORD: 9-13-1-0, 19 points, (5-6-0-0 home, 4-7-1-0 road), fourth place, North Division
THIS WEEK'S GAMES
Tuesday, December 4 @ Chicago (17-3-1-0, 35 points), first place, West Division
Wednesday, December 5 @ Rockford (12-6-2-3, 29 points), third place, West Division
Friday, December 7 @ Grand Rapids (8-12-1-2, 19 points), fifth place, North Division
Saturday, December 8 @ Grand Rapids (8-12-1-2, 19 points), fifth place, North Division
LAST WEEK'S RESULT
Friday, November 30 - Wilkes-Barre/Scranton 4, CRUNCH 2
Saturday, December 1 - CRUNCH 3, Albany 1
Sunday, December 2 - Crunch 5, LAKE ERIE 2
HOME TEAM IN CAPS
CRUNCH DOUBLE UP: The Syracuse Crunch earned back-to-back wins for the first time all season this past weekend. After losing at home to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Friday night, the players held a players only meeting in the locker room after the game. This seemed to spark the team as they came out the following night and defeated Albany, 3-1.
Crunch captain Zenon Konopka made his return to the lineup after missing the previous 10 games with a hand injury and contributed in a big way. His goal with 32 seconds remaining in the second period gave the Crunch and 1-0 lead. Albany would tie the game early in the third, but Syracuse persevered. A power play goal from Aaron Rome at 4:52 and an empty-netter from Trevor Frischmon with 48 seconds left capped the scoring and sealed the win.
After playing back-to-back games the previous two nights, the Crunch were searching for their first back-to-back wins all year on Sunday when they traveled to Cleveland to take on the Lake Erie Monsters. They found just that with some help from center Derek MacKenzie, who tallied 3 points (2g, 1a) and was named the game’s first star. He started the scoring just 15 seconds in when he jammed home a rebound to give the Crunch a 1-0 lead.
He found the back of the net again after the Monsters tied the game by beating Jason Bacashihua on a penalty shot. He was awarded the shot after being hauled down on a short-handed breakaway. Clay Wilson, Trevor Frischmon and Jeffrey Szwez would also add tallies for Syracuse as they cruised to the 5-2 victory, their second in a row.
NEW ADDITIONS MAKING AN IMPACT: The Syracuse Crunch went 2-1-0-0 this weekend and received major contributions from two new faces on the blue line. Newly acquired defensemen Aaron Rome and Clay Wilson came over in a trade for Geoff Platt on November 15 and have played well.
Rome chipped in 2 points (1g, 1a) in Saturday's win over the Albany River Rats and was named first star of the game. His power play goal in the third period was the go-ahead goal as the Crunch were able to hang on for the win. He also delivered several bone-crunching hits and was solid defensively all weekend.
Wilson contributed 5 points (1g, 4a) in the three games this past weekend. Saturday vs. Albany he notched 3 assists and Sunday @ Lake Erie he added 2 points (1g, 1a) and was named the third star of the game. Since coming to the Crunch he has 9 points (2g, 7a), in seven games.
THIS WEEK'S OPPONENTS:
CHICAGO WOLVES (ATLANTA THRASHERS): The Crunch travel to Chicago on Tuesday night to take on the West Division-leading Wolves at 8 p.m. EST. It is the second of two meetings between these two teams. The Crunch are 0-1-0-0 against Chicago as the Wolves took the first meeting back on November 9 at the War Memorial. Chicago stormed back and scored five unanswered goals after the Crunch jumped out to a 2-0 lead early on. Alexandre Giroux and Brett Sterling both scored twice for the Wolves and Derick Brassard had 2 points (1g, 1a) in a losing effort for the Crunch.
ROCKFORD ICE HOGS (CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS): The Crunch continue their mid-western swing by traveling to Rockford on Wednesday night for their first trip ever to the Rockford MetroCentre and their second of two meetings with the Hogs this year. These two teams last met back on November 17 with Rockford pulling out the 2-1 victory. Petri Kontiola and Martin St. Pierre each had 2 points (1g, 1a) for Rockford. The Crunch's Adam Munro was very strong in net, stopping 29 of 31 Rockford shots and was named third star.
GRAND RAPIDS GRIFFINS (DETROIT RED WINGS): The Crunch head to Grand Rapids for back-to-back games Friday and Saturday night. This will be the first and second of four meetings this year between these two teams. It is the only visit the Crunch will make to Grand Rapids this season. These two teams will collide later in the year at the War Memorial on January 5 and March 22. The Crunch were 2-1-0-1 against the Griffins last season.
Crunch Left wing Joakim Lindstrom was recalled to Columbus Monday…Goaltender Tomas Popperle was returned to the Crunch Monday…Friday night in Grand Rapids will be Mark Hartigan’s first game against Syracuse since being traded last year in a deal that sent him and Joe Motzko to Anaheim in exchange for Zenon Konopka, Curtis Glencross and a 7th round pick in 2007… Derek Dorsett's fight in the first period Sunday was his fourth in three games…Derek MacKenzie's short-handed penalty shot goal Sunday was his second of that kind this season; He scored a short-handed penalty shot goal October 24 @ Albany…The Crunch earned wins in back-to-back games for the first time all season with a win Sunday in Lake Erie and Saturday at home vs. Albany…Syracuse set a new season-high with 47 shots on goal Sunday… Crunch captain Zenon Konopka returned to the lineup Saturday after missing the previous 10 games with a hand injury… Trevor Frischmon's empty-net goal Saturday was the first of his AHL career; he followed up that effort with his second career AHL goal Sunday @ Lake Erie… Crunch enforcer Jon Mirasty finally found a willing combatant Saturday night when he traded blows with Albany's Trevor Gillies.