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Home | Sports News | GAME 1 RECAP: Crunch Sink Pirates in Overtime 4-3

GAME 1 RECAP: Crunch Sink Pirates in Overtime 4-3

Crunch Sink Pirates in Overtime 4-3 Syracuse leads series 1-0


Syracuse, NY – The Portland Pirates took an early 2-0 lead, but the Syracuse Crunch came roaring back, tying the game in the third period and getting the game winning goal from Richard Panik in overtime to defeat the Pirates 4-3. Syracuse takes a 1-0 series lead in the best of 5 Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series.
After a scoreless first half of the first period, Darian Dziurzynski opened the scoring. Dziurzynski beat Syracuse starter Cedric Desjardins on the wraparound after a feed from Ethan Werek for his first playoff goal, giving the Pirates the 1-0 lead with 9:07 left in the first. Portland then used one of their 4 power plays in the first period to extend their lead. After Radko Goudas was called for holding, David Rundblad found the back of the net for the Pirates’ second goal. Rundblad’s goal, which was assisted by Brandon Gormley and Jordan Martinook, came with 2:44 to go in the first. After the first period, Portland led 2-0, with the Pirates putting 15 shots on Desjardins.
Syracuse would close the gap during the penalty filled second. After a Maxim Goncharov holding penalty, AHL MVP Tyler Johnson got the Crunch on the board with 13:23 left in the second. Johnson’s goal was assisted Richard Panik and Ondrej Palat. The Pirates extended their lead back to 2 as Chris Brown slipped the puck through Desjardins’ legs exactly 2 minutes later. Phil Lane and Andy Miele had the assists on Brown’s goal, which came at 11:37. However, the Pirates went down two men after penalties to Evan Brophey and Brendan McMillan, and the Crunch responded. Mark Barberio brought the Crunch back within 1 with the goal at 13:32 of the second. The Pirates and Crunch combined for 11 penalties during the second period.
The Crunch got the equalizer in the third. Dan Sexton put the puck past Chad Johnson with 12:06 left in regulation, with Andrej Sustr and Philip-Michael Devos picking up assists. Johnson would keep the score level for the remainder of the period, and regulation ended with a 3-3 tie.
In the overtime frame, Syracuse had a goal disallowed as Tyler Johnson slipped the puck through the side of the Pirates’ net. However, a 5 minute major for elbowing was issued to Boris Valabik after his hit on Brett Connolly. Chad Johnson kept the pirates in the game with another set of big saves, but the Crunch’s Richard Panik broke through 6:36 into the extra frame to give Syracuse the win and the series lead.
The Crunch take a 1-0 lead in the best of 5 Eastern Conference Quarterfinal Series. Cedric Desjardins gets the win, stopping 28 of 31 shots, while Chad Johnson takes the loss for the Pirates, making 35 saves on 39 shots. Portland was assessed 13 penalties in the contest, while the Crunch were issued 8.
Game 2 will be tomorrow night at the War Memorial, with the puck drop set for 7:30 PM. Pregame show starts at 7:10 with Jeff Mannix. Tomorrow’s game can be heard on WPEI 95.5 and 95.9, online, and on AHL Live. Tomorrow’s game will also be televised on Time Warner Cable TWC-TV, which is channel 9 or 21 in Maine.


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