Search Grand Rapids Griffins

News Releases

SYRACUSE CRUNCHED

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Two goals from Tomas Kopecky and continued dominance by their top line propelled the Grand Rapids Griffins to a 5-2 win over the Syracuse Crunch on Friday at Van Andel Arena.

The trio of Jiri Hudler, Eric Manlow and Kent McDonell combined for two goals and four assists to push their cumulative point total to 50 just 10 games into the season. With the victory, the Griffins (7-2-0-1) are off to their best AHL start and their second-fastest start ever in terms of both wins and points, trailing only the 2000-01 squad that began 8-1-1.

Grand Rapids and Syracuse (4-5-0-0), which had not met since the 2002-03 season, will play a 7 p.m. rematch at Van Andel Arena on Saturday.

The Crunch scored during a power play just 3:56 into the contest, when Alexandre Picard tipped an Aaron Johnson blast from the point past Jimmy Howard. Syracuse then squandered a juicy opportunity to take a two-goal lead when Ben Simon’s chance on a shorthanded breakaway rang off the right post.

The errant shot proved costly midway through the frame as the Griffins notched a pair of goals just 14 seconds apart, their quickest consecutive tallies of the season. During a power play, Donald MacLean pounded home a rebound from the slot at 12:45 to even the score. Moments later, after a turnover in the left corner, Manlow centered a pass to Kopecky, who controlled the puck with his skate and quickly slipped a shot past a helpless Pascal Leclaire. The marker gave Kopecky the first three-game goal streak of his career.

Grand Rapids grabbed a two-goal cushion during an advantage 3:52 into the second period, when McDonell crashed the net to convert a Hudler feed from the end boards. The assist extended Hudler’s league-high point streak to 10 games, tying for the fourth-longest streak in franchise history and marking the team’s longest since Hudler’s 12-game tear two years ago.

The power play fest continued later in the frame, as Syracuse’s Mark Hartigan scored into a vacated net at the 14:09 mark.

The Griffins made it a 4-2 game 4:33 into the final period thanks to that top line. Hudler stickhandled through the slot to set up Manlow and record his eighth multiple-point game of the young season. Kopecky then blew the game open with his second goal at 14:42, taking a cross-crease pass from Eric Himelfarb and lifting a shot over Leclaire.

Howard improved to 2-0-1 with his 20-save effort, while Leclaire made 31 stops in the loss.

Search Archive »




Browse by Year »

2014
2013
2012
2011
2010
2009
2008
2007
2006
2005
2004

Browse by Month »

October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004