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AHL Roundup: Big weekend for Lake Erie's Sgarbossa

by Corey Masisak

Each Monday, will take a look back at the weekend that was in the American Hockey League with an emphasis on the young stars and top prospects that are continuing their development. Here are some of the highlights from the past few days in the AHL:



Michael Sgarbossa, Lake Erie

Sgarbossa scored twice and again in the shootout to help the Monsters defeat Houston. Originally signed as an undrafted free agent by San Jose, Sgarbossa was acquired by Colorado last season in the Jamie McGinn trade. He won the scoring title in the Ontario Hockey League with 102 points for Sudbury, and now has 13 points in 13 games for Lake Erie. Sgarbossa also had a goal and an assist Saturday in a win at Texas.


Tim Erixon, Springfield

Erixon scored a pair of power-play goals in a 2-0 win against his former team, the Connecticut Whale. The defenseman was a first-round pick by Calgary in 2009 before being traded twice -- first to the New York Rangers and then this past summer to Columbus in the package for Rick Nash. He has three goals and eight points in 11 games for the Falcons. Jonathan Audy-Marchessault, an undrafted free agent out of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League in his second season with Springfield, had an assist and leads the Falcons with 13 points.


Brendan Smith, Grand Rapids

Smith scored twice to help the Griffins knock of Rockford. A first-round pick in 2007, Smith made his debut with the Detroit Red Wings last season and is ready for a full-time role in Hockeytown. The defenseman now has eight points in 13 games. Fellow Wings prospect Riley Sheahan also had two goals in the win. Brandon Saad, a second-round pick in 2011 by Chicago, had his first goal for the IceHogs after missing time at the beginning of the season with an injury.

NOTES: Zach Boychuk had a goal (his ninth) and an assist to help Charlotte defeat Peoria. … Casey Cizikas, Brock Nelson and Nino Niederreiter scored to help Bridgeport win at Manchester. Monarchs goalie Martin Jones allowed a season-high five goals on 44 shots. … Cal Heeter, an undrafted free agent from Ohio State signed at the end of last season by Philadelphia, stopped 25 of 26 shots in Adirondack’s win at Rochester. … Braden Holtby turned aside 38 of 39 shots to help Hershey knock off rival Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. ... Spencer Abbott had two assists and Jussi Rynnas had a 31-save shutout to help Toronto beat Texas. … T.J. Brodie had two assists for Abbotsford in a win against Oklahoma City.



Marcus Foligno, Rochester

Foligno had the game-winning goal and two assists for the Americans, who won at Syracuse. He now has six goals and 14 points in 12 games this season after collecting six goals and 13 points in 14 games in a late-season call-up for the Buffalo Sabres in the spring. T.J. Brennan also scored for the Americans, and the defenseman is tied with Foligno for the team-lead in goals and is second on the team with 12 points.


Christian Thomas, Connecticut

Thomas had two goals as the Whale routed Worcester. The son of Steve Thomas and a second-round pick by the New York Rangers in 2010, he had a bit of a slow start in his first AHL season but now has four goals and seven points in 12 games. Chris Kreider had two assists and J.T. Miller also scored for Connecticut.


Brandon Gormley, Portland

Gormley scored his first goal of the season and had an assist to help the Pirates rally from a three-goal deficit before losing in a shootout to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. A first-round pick by Phoenix in 2010 who helped Shawinigan win the Memorial Cup last season, Gormley has four points in 10 games. Fellow Coyotes prospect Chris Brown also had a goal and an assist.

NOTES: Slava Voynov had two assists and Martin Jones stopped all 19 shots in Manchester’s win against Providence. … Jakob Silfverberg had two assists to help Binghamton defeat Norfolk. … Nazem Kadri had a goal and two assists, and Joe Colborne had a goal and assist for Toronto in a win against San Antonio. … Landon Ferraro scored twice, while Gustav Nyquist and Adam Almquist had two assists for Grand Rapids in a win against Peoria. … Justin Schultz scored in overtime, his seventh goal of the season, to help Oklahoma City defeat Abbotsford.



Cam Atkinson, Springfield

Atkinson assisted on four of the Falcons’ five goals in a 5-0 win against Norfolk. A sixth-round pick in 2008 by Columbus, Atkinson had back-to-back 30-goal seasons for Boston College before scoring 29 last year for Springfield. He has four goals and 12 points in 11 games this season for the Falcons. Matt Calvert had two goals for Springfield.


Brock Nelson, Bridgeport

Nelson had a goal and an assist to help the Sound Tigers rally from a two-goal deficit to defeat Connecticut. A first-round pick in 2010 by the New York Islanders, Nelson had 28 goals for North Dakota last season and now has seven (and 13 points) in 11 games for Bridgeport. Undrafted free agent Mike Halmo also had a goal and an assist.


Ryan Spooner, Providence

Spooner had a goal and an assist and scored in a shootout in Providence’s loss against Worcester. A second-round pick in 2010 by Boston, Spooner has played for the P-Bruins at the end of each of the past two seasons, but this is his first full professional campaign. He has two goals and a team-leading eight points in 10 games for Providence.

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