Belleville 2, Toronto 1

BSens played kitty-bar-the-door against the Marlies and with strong play by Andrew Hammond stole a win out of Toronto (their first 60-minute win since November 22nd). The game itself was not particularly entertaining, although listening to Bill Berg drone on over the play-by-play caller was pretty amusing (only the Toronto feed was up on AHL Live this morning). Before I get into specific observations, here are the basics (the boxscore):
Shots: 15-33
PP: 1-2
PK: 0-1
Goaltenders: Hammond got the start and was excellent in the win (eight key saves); Driedger sat as the back-up while both Danny Taylor and Marcus Hogberg were scratches.

The Opposition
The Marlies came into the game at 22-8, albeit having just ended a 3-game losing streak. While they allowed the BSens to play a very passive, defense-first game, they had more than enough opportunities to win the game.

The Goals
1. Toronto PP – one-timer from the point
2. PP Werek tips White’s shot in from the point
3. Perron in the slot (off a nice pass from Randell)

Scoring chances (6): White (x2), Werek (pp), Perron, Blunden, Rodewald (pp)

The Roster
Ottawa returned a number of players to Binghamton and Patrick Sieloff returned from injury, meaning a significant shuffle. I’m not sure if Lajoie was scratched or injured, but he was taken out of the lineup for Sieloff, while Harpur’s arrival meant both ECHL PTO’s (Melancon and Doornbosch) sat with the team using just six defensemen. DiDomenico’s return didn’t result in a change since the team dropped from seven to six D.

The Lines
DiDomencio-O’Brien-Rodewald
McCormick-Reinhart-Blunden
Werek-White-Gagne
Perron-Ciampini-Randell
Sieloff-Harpur
Englund-Burgdoerfer
Murray-Erkamps

Other than the third line this is not a great set of forward lines and that was evident in how little they accomplished offensively.

Special Teams
Powerplay
Werek-DiDomenico-Rodewald/Harpur-White (scored)
McCormick-O’Brien-Blunden/Gagne-Murray
Penalty Kill
McCormick-O’Brien (scored on)
Sieloff-Harpur (scored on)

The officials let the BSens get away with a ton of interference, but they couldn’t handle even one odd-man situation. The first PP unit was solid, but the second…just ugly.

Notable Plays
Perron with a nice set of moves to get a shot on goal (first); Rodewald misses the net from the slot (first); McCormick can’t make the pass to Blunden on a 2-on-1 (first); DiDomenico hits the crossbar (first); Perron walks through three players which turns into a Murray shot over the net (second); Blunden with a terrible pass on a 2-on-0 results in no shot (second); McCormick hits the post on the empty-net.

Player Notes
Randell: a stopped watch is right twice a day and Tyler Randell apparently is productive once every 28 games–it was a great play and something to be celebrated–albeit he also bungled numerous other plays in the game and still belongs in the pressbox
White: a good game for him–solid linemates helped–he was strong both offensively and defensively
Perron: one of his best games of the season, albeit a lot of his good work was stymied by poor decisions from teammates

Not a lot to go through in a game like this where the BSens were fervently trying not to lose and the Marlies were pass-happy. The team benefited tremendously from officials ignoring interference and along with that, strong goaltending won them this game.

This article is written by Peter Levi (@eyeonthesens)

 

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