WINNIPEG, Manitoba – The Grand Rapids Griffins claimed a 4-3 win over the Manitoba Moose at the MTS Centre on Friday, extending their point streak to six games (4-0-1-1).
The Griffins (29-34-3-3) will play a rematch with Manitoba (33-30-5-1) on Sunday in a 3:00 p.m. EDT matinee at the MTS Centre.
The Griffins’ first two shots on net resulted in goals. At 4:14 of the opening period, Brad May was deep in the left corner of the offensive zone and from just above the goal line he whistled a shot past Cory Schneider for his first goal as a Griffin. Then at 6:01, Riley Armstrong curled around the right side of the net to set up Francis Pare with a quick one-timer on the left doorstep.
After the Griffins’ penalty kill had been perfect in its last 30 attempts, their impressive streak came to an end when the Moose notched a power play tally at 15:36 of the period. Following a face off win, Evan Oberg fed Brian Salcido for a one-time blast that he placed in the top right corner of the net from just inside the blue line.
At 14:59 of the middle frame, Manitoba managed to tie the game at two goals apiece. Immediately after May was robbed on a close-range one-timer, Sergei Shirokov grabbed the puck in his own zone and sprinted down the ice to score an unassisted breakaway goal.
Just 21 seconds later, Grand Rapids regained its lead when Corey Emmerton broke into the offensive zone and sent a pass to Jeremy Williams who roofed a wrist shot from the top of the right circle.
Manitoba evened the score once again as Mario Bliznak made the score 3-3 at the nine minute mark of the third period. Oberg weaved into the Griffins’ zone and from behind the net he blindly left a drop pass which Bliznak buried from the right side of the crease.
Grand Rapids again broke a deadlock at 15:52 of the final stanza. Pare intercepted a Manitoba breakout attempt, and drawing the coverage of both defensemen at the top of the left circle, he connected with John Vigilante who tucked a snap shot inside the right goalpost for the eventual game-winner.
Daniel Larsson made 28 saves in the win for Grand Rapids, while Schneider turned aside 22 shots in the loss for Manitoba.
Three Stars: 1. GR Pare (1 goal, 1 assist); 2. MTB Oberg (2 assists); 3. GR Larsson (28 saves).
|AHLlive Video Highlights|
|WOOD Radio Highlights: Moose goal 2 Williams goal Moose goal 3 Vigilante goal|
|Official Game Report|