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by Staff Writer / New York Rangers

Be sure to check back regularly each week for updated Rangers prospect notes and quotes from the Blueshirt coaching and scouting staff.

PHOTO: Jozef Balej tallied two goals and two assists in Hartford's 7-2 win over Portland on Friday.

2004-05 Rangers Prospect Scoring >>

Portland 2 vs. Hartford 7
Typically a Hartford Wolf Pack win is punctuated with stellar goaltending, but the offense rose up and was recognized on Friday night in Hartford. In the club's largest scoring output of the season, the Pack thumped the Portland Pirates, 7-2. Alexandre Giroux and Jozef Balej each posted two goals and two assists, while Layne Ulmer chipped in three assists for Hartford. Jason Labarbera turned aside 23 of 25 Portland attempts to capture his 18th victory. Labarbera currently ranks first in the AHL with a 1.59 goals against average and a .941 save percentage and tied for first with 18 wins. The Wolf Pack, who sit in second place in the Atlantic Division with a 25-8-1-2 record and have lost just once in their last nine outings, travel to Springfield tonight to take on the Falcons at the Springfield Civic Center.

Columbia 0 vs. Charlotte 3
The Charlotte Checkers, coming off their longest losing streak of the season, gave the Columbia Inferno a rude welcome into the New Year, topping their division rival 5-2 at Cricket Arena Friday evening. In what was the sixth meeting between these two teams, the Checkers relied on a strong showing from goaltender Kelly Guard and an offensive explosion from forward Mike Wirll, who figured in the Checkers first four goals of the game (one goal, three assists). The win allows the Checkers to hold on to their first-place position in the East Division of the American Conference with 38 points. They return to Cricket Arena to face the Florida Everblades on Saturday, January 8th in the second of a six-game homestand.
Box Score >>

Portland (Dubinsky) 3 vs. Saskatoon (Bahensky) 5
A meeting of two top Rangers prospects yielded positive results for both. In Saskatoon, Zdenek Bahensky scored a goal and helped the Blades capture a 5-2 victory over the Portland Winter Hawks. In a losing effort, the hawks Brandon Dubinsky continued his white hot play, collecting two assists and extending his point-scoring streak to seven games. Since December 18, the Portland forward has recorded 10 points (three goals, seven assists) over the streak. He currently ranks third on the club with 34 points and tied for second with 14 goals in 37 games. Bahensky has a point streak of his own taking shape, registering points in three straight contests dating back to January 4 (2-1-3).
Box Score >>

Prince Albert (Kozak, Byers) 1 vs. Brandon 2
Prince Albert forward Rick Kozak tallied his second goal in his last three outings as his Raiders blanked the Brandon Wheat Kings, 3-0. Kozak now has six goals and one assist for seven points in 13 games since joining P.A. back on November 30. Fellow Rangers prospect and teammate Dane Byers was held off the stat sheet on Friday.
Box Score >>

Medicine Hat (Psurny) 2 vs. Kootenay (Dawes) 3 OT
With their World Junior champions Nigel Dawes and Jeff Glass back in their lineup, the Kootenay Ice overcame a two-goal deficit after 40 minutes to score a 3-2 OT victory against Medicine Hat on Friday. Dawes assisted on the Ice's first tally for his first point since December 4. Dawes missed seven Kootenay contests while helping Canada capture the gold medal at the 2005 World Junior Championships. He now has 19 goals and 10 assists for 29 points, along with 18 penalty minutes in 32 games. Medicine Hat's Roman Psurny collected two penalty minutes as his Tigers saw their six-game win streak snapped with the loss.
Box Score >>

Spokane 0 vs. Everett (Baranka) 2
Ivan Baranka returned from the 2005 World Jr. Championships, and promptly assumed his defensive position for the Everett Silvertips, who posted a 2-0 shutout over Spokane Friday night. Baranka played a solid game for the Tips, who earned their eighth shutout of the season. Everett currently sits in second place in the U.S. Division with a 20-12-6-2 record and 48 points.
Box Score >>

Owen Sound 4 vs. Guelph (Callahan) 2
In his first game back with his club since December 16, Guelph Storm captain Ryan Callahan ouldn't turn the tables on the Owen Sounds Attack, as the Storm fell, 4-2. Callahan, who was a key member of Team USA at the 2005 World Jr. Championships, did record an assist in the contest. He now has 28 points on the season, collecting 16 goals and 12 assists in 33 games for the Storm.
Box Score >>

Cape Breton 2 vs. Lewiston (Paiement) 5
Jonathan Paiement and the Lewiston MAINEiacs continued their dominance over the Screaming Eagles of Cape Breton, beating the Birds for the second time this season, 5-2. Paiement, who collected two assists in the contest, now leads his team with 36 assists and ranks first among all QMJHL defensemen with 40 points on the season. His two-assist effort last night was his 11th multi-assist contest of the season. With the win, Lewiston sees its record climb to 18-7-7.
Box Score >>

Chicoutim1 3 vs. Moncton (Graham) 1
Moncton was caught short-handed Friday night as 6-6 forward Bruce Graham was unavailable for duty as the WildCats were defeated by Chicoutimi, 3-1. The reason for Graham's absence was not known at press time. He carried a three-game point streak into the contest, and currently leads the club with 22 goals.
Box Score >>

Boston University (Roche) 3 vs. Northeastern 1
The Terrier hockey team withstood an inspired first-period effort by host Northeastern to skate to a 3-1 win over the host Huskies on Friday night, Jan. 7 to maintain its position atop the Hockey East standings. The Terriers, who outshot the Huskies by a 13-11 margin in the middle period, tied the game at 13:12 on a power play goal by Ken Roche, ended a 12-game drought for the Rangers prospect. The victory improved the Terriers' league record to a surprising 9-1-0 record while they are 13-7-0 overall. In the meantime, Northeastern, which played much better than its record would indicate, slipped to 7-10-2 overall and 3-5-1 in the league.
Recap >> | Box Score >>

USA U-18 0 4 vs. Maine (Moore, Ryan) 8
The Maine men's ice hockey defeated the USA National Development Under-18 Team 8-4 on Friday night in an exhibition game at the Cumberland County Civic Center. The second period was the key for the Black Bears, scoring four goals, including two on the power play in the period. Maine, ranked fifteenth in the nation, is still 10-8-3 (6-3-1 Hockey East) and the USA Under-18 Team is 18-8-4. Rangers' prospects Greg Moore and Billy Ryan each contributed two assists in the winning effort for the Black Bears. Moore snaps an eight-game scoreless drought with the helpers, while freshman Ryan posted the second multiple-point/assist night of his young career. 17-year phenom Phil Kessel, who starred for Team USA in the 2005 World Jr. Championships, tallied twice for the U-18 team.
Recap >> | Box Score >>

Colgate 3 vs. Harvard (Reese, Flynn) 1
Harvard's ten-game winning streak on home ice came to a halt on Friday with Colgate's 3-1 victory in a key ECACHL matchup in Cambridge. The Crimson has now dropped two straight games for the first time since early November, and falls to 9-5-2 on the season and 6-4-1 in conference play, while Colgate improves to 14-5-0, 6-1-0 ECACHL. Rangers prospect Dylan Reese was kept off the scoresheet in the contest for Harvard, while fellow Rangers draft pick Rob Flynn did not suit up for the Crimson.
Recap >> | Box Score >>

Ferris State 1 vs. Ohio State (Guenin) 3
The No. 9/10 Ohio State men's hockey team, led by two goals and three points from sophomore Matt Beaudoin, topped Ferris State, 3-1, Friday in Value City Arena in a Central Collegiate Hockey Association matchup. Nate Guenin collected his sixth assist of the 2004-05 campaign in the contest. The Buckeyes improve to 13-5-3 on the year and 10-2-1 in the CCHA. Ferris State, whose five-game (4-0-1) unbeaten streak and three-game winning streak were ended, drops to 8-11-2 and 3-8-2 in league play. The teams will end the series at 7:35 p.m. Saturday in Value City Arena.
Recap >> | Box Score >>

Michigan State (Potter) 4 vs. Miami-Ohio 0
Michigan State hockey continued its winning ways, earning a 4-0 victory over Miami of Ohio at Goggin Ice Arena Friday (Jan. 7). It marked Michigan State's first win of the New Year and its fourth consecutive victory overall. The last time that Michigan State shutout Miami was Nov. 22, 1999, when the Spartans beat the RedHawks, 3-0. The Spartans continue their winning ways into the New Year. MSU is now 4-0-0 in its last four games, including two wins at the Great Lakes Invitational to claim the championship. Corey Potter was held scoreless in the contest, but did add two minutes to his team-leading PIM totals (41).
Recap >> | Box Score >>

Western Michigan 4 vs. Michigan (Montoya) 6
A buzzing crowd packed Yost Ice Arena Friday (Jan. 7) to witness battling power plays as the University of Michigan ice hockey team toppled Western Michigan 6-4. Half of the scoring came from the power-play units, with WMU tallying three and Michigan landing two goals with the extra attacker. Jeff Tambellini scored the game-winning goal and tied a career high with three points (2-1-3). Michigan goaltender Al Montoya returned from the World Jr. Championships to capture his league-leading 14th victory of the season, making 33 saves.
Recap >> | Box Score >>

Notre Dame (Walsh) 1 vs. Lake Superior State 1
Fighting Irish Sophomore defenseman Noah Babin scored the game-tying goal at 5:23 of the third period to erase a 1-0 deficit to give Notre Dame a 1-1 tie with the Lake Superior State Lakers on Friday night at Taffy Abel Arena. Notre Dame captain Mike Walsh was held off the scoresheet in the game.
Recap >> | Box Score >>

Northern Michigan (Olver) 1 vs. Nebraska-Omaha (Holt) 3
Brando Scero scored two goals and goaltender Chris Holt turned aside 26 Northern Michigan scoring attempts in leading the University of Nebraska-Omaha to a 3-1 CCHA victory over Northern Michigan in front of 7,153 fans at Qwest Center Omaha Friday night. It was Holt's ninth win of the season. NMU's leading scorer Darin Olver was held off the books in Friday's contest.
Recap >> | Box Score >>

TPS (Korpikoski) 1 vs. HIFK (Hirschovits) 2 OT
It was the story of two NHL All-Stars in this Finnish Sr. League game as Montreal captain Saku Koivu scored the OT-winner and Nashville's Tomas Vokoun made 37 saves in a losing effort as HIFK beat TPS, 2-1. TPS Lauri Korpikoski and HIFK's Kim Hirschovits did not figure in the scoring. The win snapped a four-game losing skid for HIFK.
Box Score >>

Karpat 1 vs. JYP (Immonen) 0
In a tight defensive battle, Jarkko Immonen's JYP lost to Karpat, 1-0. Immonen leads the Finnish Sr. League with 35 points (15 goals, 20 assists) in 35 games.
Box Score >>

Kladno 0 vs. Sparta Praha (Marek) 2
Jan Marek did not record any points as Sparta Praha registered its third straight win on Friday, beating Kladno, 2-0.
Box Score >>
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