Highlights Steve Carroll with Ducks coach Gord Dineen In the next few days at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, the Anaheim Ducks rookies will see a lot of the San Jose Sharks rookies. In the first of two scrimmages between the clubs, the youngsters from Northern California got the better of the youth from Southern California, 4-2.
On Monday, the two squads will battle for the second time in a contest at the Orleans Arena. Then on Tuesday, the two rookie teams will play a game at 7:00 pm before a paying crowd that will end this portion of the Ducks 2008 Rookie Camp.
It wasn’t until the 19:02 mark of the second period, when the first goal of the scrimmage was scored. The only power play goal of the contest was tallied by Sharks right winger Mike Morris, from Zach Harden and Steve Zalewski. Morris put the puck behind Ducks goaltender Marco Cousineau from in front of the net to give the Sharks a lead they would not relinquish.
Matt Fornataro made it 2-0 on assists from Matt Jones and left winger Jonathan Bonneau early in the third period to up the San Jose lead.
The Ducks rookies got on the board on a shot from the blue line from defenseman Eric Regan, with an assist going to Nicolas Deschamps at 4:43 of the final period. Regan played in Oshawa of the (OHL) last season, scoring 8 goals and adding 40 assists for 48 points.
The Ducks trailed by that 2-1 margin until the 15:37 mark of the third frame. An even strength tally by the Sharks Steve Zalewski made it 3-1. But the Ducks fought back for second time in the contest.
Nathan Dey cut the Sharks lead to 3-2 with a score at 17:11. Maxime Macenauer and Stefan Warg added assists. With time winding down, the Ducks pulled their goaltender for an extra attacker.
Mike Morris added his second goal for San Jose into the open net to wrap up the scoring.
The scrimmage was highlighted by numerous fights between the teams. Jason Bailey of the Ducks and Frazer McLaren of the Sharks went at it late in the first period.
In the second period, it was Stu Bickel from Anaheim and McLaren of the Sharks going at it in one of the better scraps. Big Josh Brittain, third round pick of the Ducks this past summer traded punches with Mike Moore of San Jose, also in the second period.
In the third, the Ducks Charlie Kronschnabel, who played his hockey in Reading of the (ECHL) last season exchanged punches with Brett Westgarth of the Sharks.
The Ducks J.P. Levasseur played all of the first period in the nets for the Ducks rookies. He was replaced by Marco Cousineau at the 9:38 mark of the second period.
Levasseur, who split time between Augusta (ECHL) and Portland (AHL) last season says this rookie camp is a great experience for the young players in the Ducks organization.
“Some of these guys are probably going to be playing in the AHL together,” said Levasseur. “It’s good to have a chance and get to know everybody. You want to become friends with everybody and feel more at ease.”
As far as the Sunday night scrimmage is concerned, Levasseur says it was a little feisty out there on the ice.
“Everybody works hard,” added Levasseur. “In the first period, we played well defensively. It was a good game, I think, for everybody.”
Gord Dineen, who will be head coach of the Iowa Chops of the AHL this coming season talked about the night of hockey, following the game.
“It’s a process for us,” said Dineen. “These kids are on the ice for only the third time together, so they are just now getting a feel for each other. We threw a lot of thing at ‘em in a short period of time as far as systems and things like that. We told them, do what got you here. The first period, we were a bit scrambly. But as time went on, they got as little more comfortable and started pushing the puck up the ice a little bit. They got better. I’m fairly pleased. They certainly didn’t quit at the end.”
NOTES Ducks scratches were right winger Matt Stefanishion, defenseman Andrew Thomas and goaltender David McKee.