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Crunch fall 4-2 in Calder Cup Finals Game 3

by Staff Writer / Tampa Bay Lightning

The Syracuse Crunch drop to 3-0 in the best-of-seven Calder Cup Finals after dropping Game 3 4-2 tonight at the Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids.

Richard Panik gave the Crunch a 1-0 lead just over halfway through the opening frame. Panik recovered the puck after making a hit along the boards and beat a Griffins defender before lifting the puck over Gand Rapids netminder Petr Mrazek.

The Griffins evened the score 2:09 into the middle frame with a wraparound goal from Tomas Tatar and took a 2-1 lead with 15:07 to play in the second. The Griffins go-ahead goal came after Crunch netminder Cedrick Desjardins made an initial save on a Danny Dekeyser shot and the Crunch were unable to clear the rebound before Luke Glendening found the back of the net.

Dan Sexton scored his fifth playoff goal to level the score at 2-2 halfway through the middle frame. Sexton’s wrist shot from the right point floated past Mrazek and was assisted by JP Cote.

Jan Mursak scored, what would hold up as the game-winning goal, at the 15:11 mark of the third period. Mursak spun around and fired the shot from a sharp angle, the puck found its way through traffic in the crease and into the back of Desjardins’ net.

The Griffins secured their 3-0 series lead with a goal from Jeff Hoggan at the 17:32 mark of the final frame. Game 4 is scheduled for Friday, June 14 at the Van Andel Arena.

Crunchables: Radko Gudas missed his third consecutive game with an injury…With Richard Panik’s first period goal the Crunch took their first lead of the series…The Crunch are 7-1 this postseason when scoring first…Tonight’s game was the first game this post-season the Crunch gave up a lead.

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