‘We’re not gonna go quietly here’: Marlies go down 2-0 in series with Rochester
By Nick Barden16 days ago
After a game in which the Marlies had to claw their way back, it was the same story on Saturday in Game 2 vs. Rochester.
The game didn’t get off to a great start as Marlies captain Logan Shaw took a penalty, giving Rochester a fairly early power play opportunity eight minutes into the game.
On the man advantage, Jiri Kulich, who’s scored in each game he’s appeared in, added yet another tally to his already impressive stat line.
That was the 19-year-old’s fifth goal of the Calder Cup Playoffs in as many games.
Toronto found a bit of life early in the second period with a power play goal courtesy of Nick Abruzzese. But shortly after that, it fell apart, all over again for the Marlies.
Rochester began scoring at alarming rate with four goals in less than three minutes, placing the Marlies in the position to have to claw their way back for the second time in as many games.
Erik Kallgren allowed four goals on 19 shots against and Marlies head coach Greg Moore elected to change goalies.
Keith Petruzzelli came in and allowed a goal on the first shot he faced. For the rest of the game, the 24-year-old stopped eight of 10 shots.
“The second period certainly had some interesting events,” Moore said.
“(We) got a little distracted in the second period. There was probably a two to three-minute window of a couple quick goals that were a little bit more of our own defensive breakdown and then our group was clearly frustrated with how things were going in the second.”
Toronto gained a bit of life in the third period with a goal from Pontus Holmberg on the power play, putting the Marlies down by only three goals. If there was anything that would’ve shifted the momentum in their favour, it would be that.
However, 40 seconds later, Joseph Blandisi takes a penalty which sends Rochester to the man advantage. And right away, the Amerks found the back of the net, likely smothering any comeback Toronto might’ve had in them.
“There was a lot of adversity that we had to play through that game.” Said a stoic Kyle Clifford after the game. “We’re not gonna go quietly here.”
Toronto’s had a lot of difficulties in this series finding goals at five-on-five.
Five of the seven that the Marlies have scored in this series have been on a man advantage, meaning only two have been at even strength. They’ve gotten a lot of great chances, but just cannot find the back of the net.
Part of that is due to the play of Malcolm Subban, who’s stopped 7 of the 61 shots he’s faced over two games. The other part could just come down to luck.
“Today, it wasn’t due to a lack of chances,” said Moore. “Sometimes they just don’t go in, sometimes you got through a few game segments and everything seems to be going in.
“We just gotta stay with it. If we weren’t getting the chances, I’d be concerned. But we’re definitely creating offence, we just gotta find the back of the net.”
It’s do-or-die now for the Marlies as the series heads to Rochester. If they can win both games, it’ll bring the two teams back to Toronto for a Game 5.
For the Marlies in these playoffs, the message has always been to take it one game at a time. The message ahead of Game 3 in Rochester, though?
“We’re gonna leave it all on the line.” Clifford said.
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