GRAND RAPIDS GRIFFINS 2 at Cleveland Monsters 1 (OT)
Feb. 23, 2022
CLEVELAND - Captain Brian Lashoff’s overtime winner propelled the Grand Rapids Griffins past the Cleveland Monsters, 2-1 on Wednesday at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. The victory gave the Griffins their third straight win and they now have points in four consecutive contests against the Monsters (3-0-1-0).
Chase Pearson scored the Griffins’ lone regulation goal with Jared McIsaac recording the helper, which extended his point streak to three games (1-2—3). Since rehabbing from an injury that kept him out for 10 games, Pearson has points in two of his last three outings (1-1—2). Taro Hirose assisted on the game-winner, extending his point streak to three games (1—3—4). Calvin Pickard recorded 33 saves in the win, giving the netminder his second consecutive victory.
Grand Rapids broke the scoreless tie at 6:52 in the opening stanza. Pearson took an initial shot at the left wing, but Cam Johnson made the save. The third-year pro then gathered the rebound and sent the disc into the right corner.
The Griffins had chances to increase the lead in the middle frame but were unable to score on a breakaway when Johnson made a stick save on Kyle Criscuolo at 13:49. Cleveland outshot Grand Rapids 12-6 in the period, but Pickard made a great effort to keep the Monsters scoreless.
Cleveland tied the contest in the third with 14:13 remaining. Tyler Angle at the right boards sent a centering pass to Tristan Mullin in the slot. Mullin then fired the puck under the glove of Pickard to even the game at 1-1.
In the overtime period, Hirose got the disc at the right boards and found a streaking Lashoff between the circles. The 12-year-veteran then received the puck on a give-and-go and fired a one-timer past Johnson at 3:37 to give the Griffins a 2-1 victory.
Grand Rapids is 10-3-1-0 over the past two seasons against Cleveland.
Pickard surpassed the 2000-minute mark, as his 2021:12 minutes played ranks second among goaltenders in the AHL.
Pickard recorded an assist in the contest, giving him four this season.
Grand Rapids 1 0 0 1 - 2
Cleveland 0 0 1 0 - 1
1st Period-1, Grand Rapids, Pearson 5 (McIsaac), 6:52. Penalties-Jordan Cle (holding), 3:13; McIsaac Gr (tripping), 17:38.
2nd Period- No Scoring.Penalties-No Penalties
3rd Period-2, Cleveland, Mullin 2 (Angle, Bemstrom), 5:47. Penalties-Meyer Cle (tripping), 0:37.
OT Period-3, Grand Rapids, Lashoff 3 (Hirose, Pickard), 3:37. Penalties-No Penalties
Shots on Goal-Grand Rapids 9-6-5-4-24. Cleveland 11-12-10-1-34.
Power Play Opportunities-Grand Rapids 0 / 2; Cleveland 0 / 1.
Goalies-Grand Rapids, Pickard 17-11-5 (34 shots-33 saves). Cleveland, Johnson 2-3-2 (24 shots-22 saves).
1. GR Lashoff (game-winning goal); 2. GR Pickard (OTW, 33 saves); 3. CLE Mullin (goal)
Record / Next Game
Grand Rapids: 21-19-5-2 (49 pts.) / Fri., Feb. 25 vs. Bakersfield 7 p.m.
Cleveland: 15-22-5-3 (39 pts.) / Fri., Feb. 25 vs. Lehigh Valley 7 p.m.
Photo by Cleveland Monsters