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Springfield Report: January 4, 2011

by Blue Jackets Staff / Columbus Blue Jackets

WEEK IN REVIEW


DECEMBER 26 Springfield 5 vs. Providence 2 (Goal scorers – Guite,D'Alvise, Mayorov, Goertzen, Filatov)
DECEMBER 29 Springfield 2 vs. Worcester 3 (SO) (Goal scorers – Blunden, Frischmon)
DECEMBER 31 Springfield 2 at Adirondack 3 (SO) (Goal scorers – Savard, Mayorov)
JANUARY 1 Springfield 3 vs. Manchester 1 (Goal scorers – Holden, Guite, Goloubef)

THIS WEEK'S SCHEDULE
JANUARY 7 Springfield at Portland - 7 PM    Cumberland Civic Center
JANUARY 8 Springfield vs Charlotte - 7 PM   MassMutual Center
JANUARY 9 Springfield at Worcester - 3 PM  DCU Center

*Radio Broadcasts on WHYN AM 560
*Watch AHL Live


THIS WEEK'S GAME PREVIEWS

FRIDAY, JANUARY 7, 2011 – SPRINGFIELD FALCONS AT PORTLAND PIRATES

The Springfield Falcons and Portland Pirates meet for the fifth time this season when they get together on Friday night in Portland, Maine. The Falcons are 2-2 against the Pirates this year including 1-1 in Portland. The season series has gone back and forth thus far with the two teams exchanging wins through the first four games.

Matt Calvert and Ben Guite lead the Falcons in scoring against the Pirates this year with one goal and three assists each. Tom Sestito has three goals in three games against Portland this year. Mark Mancari leads Portland in scoring against the Falcons this year with three goals and three assists for six points in four games. Luke Adam is currently on recall to the Buffalo Sabres and he has two goals and four assists for six points in three games against Springfield.

Portland remains one of the top teams in the Atlantic Division with a record of 18-11-4-1 good for 41 points and third place in the division. Portland is 0-1-2-0 in their last three games, but they remain a dominate team at home this year going 10-2-3-1 on home ice.

SATURDAY, JANUARY 8, 2011 – SPRINGFIELD FALCONS VS. CHARLOTTE CHECKERS
The Springfield Falcons host the Charlotte Checkers for the second and final time this season when they get together on Saturday night at the MassMutual Center. The Falcons lost to the Checkers at home back on October 10 by a score of 4-1. Springfield and Charlotte will meet three times this month with the Falcons playing in Charlotte on January 19 and 21 to conclude the season series.

The Checkers remain one of the top teams in the AHL with a record of 20-11-1-3 good for 44 points and second place in the East Division. Charlotte is 7-2-0-1 in their last 10 games and an impressive 11-5-1-0 on the road. Jerome Samson leads Charlotte in scoring with 18 goals and 18 assists for 36 points in 35 games.

Former Falcon Jacob Micflikier is having a career year with Charlotte totaling 15 goals and 15 assists for 30 points through his first 33 games this year.

SUNDAY, JANUARY 9, 2011 – SPRINGFIELD FALCONS AT WORCESTER SHARKS
The Springfield Falcons and Worcester Sharks meet for the third time this season when they get together on Sunday afternoon in Worcester. The Falcons and Sharks just played last Wednesday with Worcester beating Springfield in a shootout 3-2. The Falcons rallied back from a 2-0 deficit in that game to earn a point.

The Falcons and Sharks start the week separated by only four points in the standings.

Worcester goaltender Alex Stalock continues to lead the AHL in minutes played with 1,737 in 30 appearances. Stalock has a record of 15-13-2 thus far this year. Jonathan Cheechoo continues to lead the Sharks in scoring with 13 goals and 22 assists for 35 points in 33 games. Defenseman Sean Sullivan leads all Sharks blueliners in scoring with 10 goals and 11 assists for 21 points in 35 games. Sullivan leads all AHL defensemen in goals.


PLAYER/TEAM NOTES:

The Springfield Falcons took six out of a possible eight points last week (starting on December 26) going 2-0-0-2 in four games. The Falcons have earned at least a point in six of their last seven games going 4-1-0-2 in that span.

Trevor Frischmon has points in four straight games collecting one goal and four assists in that span. Gustaf Wesslau has stopped 61 of his last 64 shots faced in his last two games posting a save percentage of .953. Wesslau stopped 36 of 38 shots on Wednesday, December 29 against Worcester and stopped 25 of 26 shots on Saturday in a 3-1 win over Manchester. Wesslau was the game's first star on Saturday.

The Falcons have not allowed a power play goal in their last five straight games going a perfect 19-19 on the penalty kill in that span.

Nikita Filatov collected his first goal of the year and added one assist on December 26 against Providence.

Steven Goertzen has points in three of his last four games (1g,2a) since returning from injury on December 26.

Ben Guite has two goals in four games since returning from injury on December 26.

David Savard has points in four of his last five games collecting two goals and three assists in that span.

The Falcons have used 11 different players to record a game winning goal this year. 2010-11 marks the first time the Falcons have been over the .500 mark at New Years since the 2007-08 campaign when they were 17-14-3-3 on January 2, 2008.


LAST WEEK'S GAME RECAPS

SPRINGFIELD VS. PROVIDENCE, DECEMBER 26 – Win, 5-2

December 26, 2010 - The Springfield Falcons returned from their holiday break with an impressive 5-2 win over the Providence Bruins at the MassMutual Center on Sunday afternoon. The Falcons had 12 different players record at least a point, while goaltender David LeNeveu was steady stopping 15 of 17 shots. The Falcons improved their record to 15-15-1-1 on the season and Springfield has now won three of their last four contests.

The Falcons fell behind early in the first period when Jamie Arniel scored his 13th goal of the year for Providence, but Springfield would respond in a big way and take control of the game before the opening period was completed. Chris D'Alvise scored for the third straight game at 11:15 of the first period evening the score at 1-1. The Falcons took a 2-1 lead at 17:01 of the opening frame when Steven Goertzen scored his third marker of the campaign giving Springfield a one goal lead after 20 minutes.

In the second period, the Falcons continued to build their lead when Maksim Mayorov tallied his eighth goal of the year at 2:39, followed by linemate Nikita Filatov scoring his first marker of the year at 15:56 giving Springfield a 4-1 advantage. With the Falcons leading by three goals, the game got a little chippy as Nick Tarnasky and Nathan

McIver dropped the gloves, followed by Dane Byers and Wyatt Smith going toe-to-toe just 20-seconds later. Providence cut into their deficit at 9:39 of the third period when Kirk MacDonald scored his fifth goal of the year, but Ben Guite regained Springfield's three goal advantage at 14:48 of the final frame with his fourth goal of the year.

GAME NOTES
Captain Ben Guite returned to the lineup after missing eight games due to injury. Steven Goertzen also returned to the lineup after missing eight games due to injury. The Falcons are now 4-3 on the season against the Bruins. Jay Pandolfo was released from his Professional Tryout Agreement.

SPRINGFIELD VS. WORCESTER, DECEMBER 29 – Loss SO, 3-2
December 29, 2010 - The Springfield Falcons earned a point on Wednesday night dropping a 3-2 decision to the Worcester Sharks in the shootout at the MassMutual Center. The Falcons rallied back from a 2-0 deficit to earn a point in the standings and they have now earned a point in four of their last five games going 3-1-0-1 in that span.

The Sharks came out fast in the first period and built a 2-0 lead in the opening period. Steve Zalewski opened the scoring just 1:30 into the first period with his second goal of the year, followed by Dan DaSilva netting his sixth marker of the campaign at 11:57 of the opening session. With the Falcons trailing in the opening period, Tom Sestito helped get the energy back in the building when he dropped the gloves with Worcester defenseman Mike Moore.

The Falcons turned the momentum in their favor in the second period and cut their deficit to 2-1 when Mike Blunden tallied his 12th goal of the year at 13:41 pulling Springfield to within a single goal. The Falcons continued to carry the play in the second period and they almost evened the score late in the frame when Nikita Filatov had Worcester goaltender Alex Stalock beat, but rang the puck off the cross bar.

In the third period, the Falcons continued to apply pressure and it was Filatov sending Maksim Mayorov in on a breakaway early in the frame, but Stalock again made the stop. Springfield pulled even at 12:22 of the third period when the hard work of Nick Tarnasky and Trevor Frischmon paid off with Frishmon knocking in Tarnasky's rebound tying the score at 2-2.

Neither team scored in the overtime, but the extra session was filled with scoring chances and entertaining play. In the shootout, Mayorov opened the scoring for Springfield, but Worcester's Jonathan Cheechoo pulled the Sharks all even in the first round. Falcons goaltender Gustaf Wesslau and Stalock held the fort through the next two rounds, but Tomas Kubalik converted in round four for the Falcons. Cory Quirk pulled Worcester even in the shootout with their fourth shot and James Marcou scored on the final shot earning Worcester the victory.

SPRINGFIELD AT ADIRONDACK, DECEMBER 31 – Loss SO, 3-2
December 31, 2010 - The Springfield Falcons earned a point on the road on Friday afternoon losing to the Adirondack Phantoms in a shootout by a score of 3-2 at the Glens Falls Civic Center. The Falcons have now earned a point in five of their last six games going 3-1-0-2 in that span.

The first half of the opening period didn't feature many scoring chances for either team as the two clubs took some time to get their skating legs. The Falcons ended up on the game's first power play later in the first period, but it was Adirondack's Jonathon Kalinski who tallied a shorthanded marker at 6:31 of the first period giving Adirondack a 1-0 lead. The game's first altercation occured in the opening frame as Adirondack's Mike Testwuide and Springfield's Nick Tarnasky dropped the gloves.

The Phantoms held on to their one goal advanatge into the second period, but Springfield found the equalizer at 13:05 of the second period when David Savard scored his second goal of the year. The Falcons took their first lead of the night just a little over four minutes later when Maksim Mayorov scored his ninth goal of the year assisted by Trevor Frischmon and Tarnasky. The game continued to be physical during the middle frame as Tom Sestito and Zac Rinaldo dropped the gloves for the game's second fight.

In the third period with the Falcons nursing a one goal lead, Adirondack tied the score at 2-2 when Greg Moore scored his third goal of the year at 3:18. Sestito had his second fight of the game at 13:39 of the third period when this time he challenged Marc-Andre Bourdon scoring his second knock down of the night.

After a scoreless overtime, the Falcons went into the shootout for the second straight game. Mike Ryan scored for the Phantoms in the second round and Luke Pither converted in the fourth round helping the home team with the win.

SPRINGFIELD VS. MANCHESTER, JANUARY 1 – Win, 3-1
January 1, 2011 - You couldn't have asked for a better start to 2011 for the Springfield Falcons. Gustaf Wesslau stopped 25 shots, including a penalty shot, and the Falcons received goals from Nick Holden, Ben Guite and Cody Goloubef in leading Springfield to a 3-1 win over the Manchester Monarchs on Saturday at the MassMutual Center. A very energetic crowd of 4,196 saw Springfield earn at least a point for the sixth time in their last seven games going 4-1-0-2 in that span.

Entering Saturday's contest, the Falcons were facing a Monarchs team that had won six straight games, but Springfield used a very strong performance to improve their own record to 16-15-1-3 on the season. The tone was set in the first five minutes of Saturday's game as there were two quick fights to highlight the physical play right from the opening faceoff. Dane Byers and Colten Tuebert collected fighting majors, followed by Nick Tarnasky and Justin Johnson going toe to toe.

With just one minute remaining in the first period, the Falcons took a 1-0 lead when Guite won a faceoff directly back to Holden and his slap shot beat Jeff Zatkoff giving the Falcons a one goal lead after 20 minutes.

In the second period, Springfield built a 2-0 lead when Goloubef scored at 5:28 when he took a pass from Trevor Frischmon and found the back of the net for his third goal of the year.

With the Falcons holding on to a 2-0 lead, Manchester's Viatcheslav Voynov scored his sixth marker of the campaign at 18:36 of the middle period cutting Springfield's lead to 2-1.

In the third period, Manchester had a chance to even the score when Andrei Loktionov was awarded a penalty shot, but Wesslau made the save and once again turned the momentum in the Falcons favor. Less than a minute after the penalty shot, the Falcons regained their two goal lead when Guite tallied his fifth goal of the year on a nice setup from Matt Calvert and Tomas Kubalik giving Springfield an insurance goal and a 3-1 advantage.

GAME NOTES
Manchester was 0-4 on the power play.

TRANSACTIONS
12-26-10 –
Jay Pandolfo was released from his Professional Tryout Agreement.

12-29-10 – Tom Sestito assigned to the Springfield Falcons by the Columbus Blue Jackets.

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