MANCHESTER, NH – The Manchester Monarchs' six-game winning streak came to an end as they fell to the Lowell Devils, 3-1, in a close game that came down to goaltending in front of 5,104 fans on Go Green Night at the Verizon Wireless Arena on Friday night.
Manchester (33-27-0-6, 72 points) is in third place in the Atlantic Division. Lowell (29-27-2-6, 66 points) is in sixth place in the Atlantic Division.
"I thought we played a good, solid 60 minutes and executed our game plan," said Assistant Coach Scott Pellerin. "We just came up short in the end."
Lowell got their first lead of the night when right wing Nicklas Bergfors scored his second goal of the game and 18th tally of the season at the 16:52 stanza of the second period. Defenseman Rosario Ruggeri gave a crisp pass to Bergfors who skated in and ripped a wrist shot from the top of the left face-off circle that beat screened goaltender Joanathan Bernier. Defenseman Jay Leach also received an assist on the score.
The Monarchs got on the board first when left wing Scott Parse trickled one past the net minder on the power play at 4:55 of the first period. Left Wing Matt Moulson skated down the left wing boards and fed Parse, streaking down the right wing. The second year winger put it past goaltender Jeff Frazee for his 14th of the season. Defenseman Viatcheslav Voynov received the other assist on the Monarchs lone tally.
The Devils evened the score at 1-1 when Bergfors notched his 17th tally of the season at the 9:23 mark of the first period. Center Michael Swift came out from the right corner and found left wing Ryan J. Murphy in the right face-off circle for a snap shot that Bernier stopped. The rebound fell into the crease for Bergfors to put home.
Lowell put an end to any hope of a come back by Manchester when Leach scored an empty netter at the 19:58 mark of the third period. This was Leach's second goal of the season.
Manchester went 1-for-3 on the power play. Lowell was 1-for-5 with the man advantage.
Bernier (19-18-3) took his 18th loss of the season stopping 27-of-29 shots. Frazee (23-14-5) saved 33-of-34 shots for his 23rd win of the season.