Today was a chance at redemption for the Toronto Marlies. Really, their last chance against the Binghamton senators, facing them for the fourth and final time of the season. Yesterday’s game was a continuation of the usual patterns – a lack of scoring, an inconsistent powerplay, and without Drew MacIntyre starting, instability in net. Today, the now-contracted netminder was back between the pipes, and the boys in one-off camouflage jerseys were looking to get just one win out of a team that they haven’t beaten since October 8th of 2011.
Things didn’t start off well for them. Dustin Gazley found himself some open space, went in on MacIntyre, and found a hole high glove just four minutes in. Penalties to Andrew Crescenzi and Dylan Yeo didn’t help turn things around. Though a late powerplay was enough to put Toronto up in the shot count, no further goals were scored.
Luck was more in their favour in the second period. While none of the three powerplay opportunities were successful, and most of the 12 shots were low percentage, Greg Scott fired home his fourth goal of the season to tie the game in the middle frame’s final minutes. The third period brought powerplays and four on fours, two of them courtesy of Crescenzi. Both teams tightened up, combining for just 11 shots in the first fifteen minutes of the period, and brought the game to overtime.
Nothing was solved by overtime, so the game headed to a shootout. Ryan Hamilton and Joe Colborne were the only two to score for the Marlies, with Greg Scott, Greg McKegg, and Jerry D’Amigo all missing their opportunities. MacIntyre needed to pull some magic out of his hat, and he did, stopping all but one of the Senators efforts, winning the game 2-1.
- Jake Gardiner had another confident game. Skating into the right areas, not over thinking, effortless movement. If only he would shoot more, but he’s not far away now. I wouldn’t be shocked if he’s finally in "call up" shape by the end of next weekend.
- Welcome to another game that Drew MacIntyre kept his forwards in. After that first goal against, he made a ton of big saves on fewer, but stronger chances from the Binghamton forwards, stopping 28 of 29 and improving his absurd save percentage to 0.947.
- Andrew Crescenzi’s three penalties were more than the entire team had yesterday. Not the most disciplined game on his part by any stretch of the imagination.
- Jesse Blacker has quietly been putting up a bunch of big games since the NHL’s return. We’ll talk about him more this week, but despite being -1 today, he looked rather good.
- Neither team scored on the powerplay tonight, so it’s safe to call the special teams a wash.
- 6635 fans were in attendance tonight, slightly above the team’s average, currently 8th in the league.