BEAST (15-25-7-4, 41 PTS | 4th Place, North) vs WALLEYE (32-14-2-3, 69 PTS | 1st Place, North)
BRAMPTON, ON – The Brampton Beast mounted a late third period comeback attempt with goals from Brandon Marino and Scott Jacklin but a pair of empty net goals from the Adirondack Thunder ended Brampton’s rally as the visitors skated away with a 5-2 win at the Powerade Centre on Sunday afternoon.
Beast starting goaltender Kenny Reiter kept the Beast alive through the opening 20 minutes of play, as the Thunder outshot the Beast 13-9.
The Thunder managed to get one through Reiter in the opening period. Adirondack’s leading scorer Michael Kirkpatrick snapped a quick shot from the top of the circle that got through a sea of bodies and beat Reiter for a power play goal at 8:30.
The Thunder pushed the lead to 3-0 in quick succession in the second period as Peter MacArthur and Louick Marcotte less than two minutes apart near the midway point of the frame.
The Beast emerged a new and energized bunch in the third period and didn’t have to wait long to break the shutout of Thunder starting goaltender Peter Di Salvo. David Ling set up shop behind the Thunder net and spotted a streaking Brandon Marino heading toward the net. He placed a perfect pass on the captain’s stick and he made no mistake, snapping home his 13th goal of the season at 1:02.
Both Chris Auger and David Ling earned assists on Marino’s tally, extending both of their point streaks. Auger now has points in seven consecutive games, while Ling has points in all five games he has played as a member of the Beast this season.
The rejuvenated Beast fed off the energy inside the Powerade Centre and capitalized again quickly as Scott Jacklin parked himself in front of the goal and redirected a perfect Christian Weidauer point shot into the cage for his second goal in as many games, cutting the Adirondack lead to 3-2 at the 2:46 mark of the third period.
The Beast continued to pressure throughout the final frame and outshot the Thunder 7-5 in the period but both Marcotte and Kirkpatrick each picked up their second goal of the game into the empty net in the dying minutes of the game to seal the victory for Adirondack.
Reiter gave his team a chance to win with a solid 23-save performance between the pipes, while Di Salvo earned the ‘W’ for the visitors with 20 saves.
Feb. 19: Mac Bennett (D) Reassigned from St. John’s (AHL). Mike Vernace (D) Loaned to Stockton (AHL). Drew Fielding (G) Traded back to Adirondack (AHL). Kenny Reiter (G) Signed to SPC. Feb. 23: Travis Brown (D) Reassigned to St. John's (AHL).
TODAY'S GAME: The Beast will head to the Huntington Center in Toledo to face the Walleye for eighth time this season. This visit will be the fourth time playing the Walleye in their building this season. The Walleye own a perfect 3-0-0-0 record against the Beast at home this season.
QUICK STARTS: The Beast have played nine games thus far in the month of February and have posted a 1-5-2-1 since the beginning of the month. In six of the month's nine games to date, the first goal of the game was scored less than five minutes into the first period. In four of those games, the opening goal was scored in the game's first minute of play.
HOT BEAST: Several membrers of the Beast have been playing very well of late and have been on impressive individual streaks. Chris Auger has now recorded points in seven straight games dating back to Feb. 6. He has amassed four goals and five assists during his streak. David Ling has recorded a point in all five games he has appeared in for the Beast this season. He has recorded a goal and four assists during his streak.
CHASING DOWN TEAM HISTORY: Beast forward David Ling needs just two assists to tie Jamie VanderVeeken for second place in the Beast franchise's all-time assists category. Ling has 36 assists to date and is still chasing Jason Pitton's franchise assist record of 51.
FAMILIAR FOES: The Beast are about to play the Walleye for the 9th time this season, the most of any team they have played to date. They have also squared off with the other two North Division rivals, the Wheeling Nailers and Kalamazoo Wings, eight times each to date. The Beast will face the Walleye 11 times this season.
OT EXPERIENCE: The Beast have gone to overtime 17 times this season, leading the league in OT appearances. The Beast are tied for second in the ECHL with six overtime wins. They have yet to win in the shootout, going 0-for-4 when playing beyond overtime.
KEEP AN EYE ON… Walleye forward Shane Berschbach, who is riding an impressive five-game point streak in which he has collected five goals and five assists. All five of his goals have come during his last three games.
TOLEDO WALLEYE TRANSACTIONS:
Feb. 21: Tyler Sikura (F): ADD. Feb. 28: Tyler Sikura (F): ADD Returned on Loan from Portland (AHL).
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