TONIGHT’S GAME: The Rochester Americans close out a busy stretch of three games in four nights tonight as the Amerks travel to Syracuse for a rematch with the Crunch at the War Memorial at Oncenter. The 7:30 p.m. contest will be the fourth of 10 meetings between the intrastate rivals this season and will be carried live on Sports 1280 WHTK.
AMERKS FAN GUIDE:
2012-13 AHL STANDINGS
Last Game: Rochester vs. Hamilton – 1/11/13
Rochester (5) vs. Hamilton (2)
Goals: Flynn, Brennan, Mancari (GWG), Tarnasky, McNabb
Goalie(s): Leggio (17 saves/19 shots, 60:00)
Special Teams: PP: 1/4 --- PK: 4/5
Shots: Rochester 28 --- Hamilton 19
PIM: Rochester 39 --- Hamilton 39
3 Stars: 1. Brennan (RCH), 2. Girgensons (RCH), 3. Porter (RCH)
HEAD-TO-HEAD: Tonight’s matchup falls in the middle of a stretch in which the teams face-off three times in a span of five games and marks the second get-together in three nights after Syracuse defeated the Amerks 5-3 Wednesday in Rochester. Mark Mancari, Luke Adam and Brian Flynn each scored for the Amerks, while David Leggio turned away 40 of 45 shots he faced as Rochester dropped its first game to the Crunch this season. Despite the loss, however, the Amerks are 5-2-0-0 in their last seven games against Syracuse dating back to last season, a streak that has produced a win for Rochester in four of the last five meetings between the cross-town foes. The Amerks are 2-1-0-0 against the Crunch this season.
AMERKS NOTES: Rochester (18-14-2-1, 39 points) enters the contest fresh off its 5-2 win over the Hamilton Bulldogs last night at The Blue Cross Arena. Despite falling behind early, the Amerks erupted for four unanswered goals to snap a brief two-game skid. Four different Amerk players recorded two-point games, while the line of Flynn, Adam and Nick Tarnasky combined for a game-high five points (2+3), helping Rochester to its third win in its last five games. Brennan picked up his team-leading 33rd point of the season with his team-best 13th goal, extending his current point streak to four games. Having already surpassed the season total he set last year in 52 games with the Amerks, Brennan is just seven points shy of establishing a new single-season career-high. Brennan, who shows 15 points (4+11) over his last 13 games, leads the Amerks in all offensive categories, including goals (13), assists (20) and points (33) and ranks third in scoring among AHL defensemen, good enough for 12th overall among the league’s top point-getters. Brennan also enters play tonight leading all rearguards in shots (128) and shorthanded goals (2), while his six power-play goals place him second in that category. Additionally, the fourth-year blueliner ranks second among league defensemen in goals and needs another five tallies to tie the franchise record for most goals scored by a defenseman in a single-season. Leggio, who’s won five of his last eight starts, leads all AHL netminders in wins (17), saves (882) and minutes played (1761:34).
QUICK HITS: Nick Tarnasky enters play riding a three-game point streak (2+1)... Mark Mancari has scored a goal in six of the last eight games... Kevin Porter has tallied eight points (1+7) in the last five outings... Zemgus Girgensons recorded his first multi-point game as a pro with two assists in Friday's win... Brian Flynn has notched eight points (2+6) in the last eight games.
SYRACUSE NOTES: Syracuse (24-7-2-3, 53 points) comes into the matchup as the top team in the AHL after assembling what has proven to be the Crunch’s best start in franchise history. Coming off their 3-2 shootout win over the defending Calder Cup champion Norfolk Admirals last night on home ice, the Crunch have won five straight and seven of their last eight games to move atop the league standings. Guided by reigning AHL Coach of the Year Jon Cooper, Syracuse currently leads the league in wins (24) and goals scored (130), while boasting the AHL’s best winning percentage (.736). Additionally, the Crunch, whose seven regulation losses are presently a league-low, have picked up 34 of their league-best 53 points away from Central New York, making them the AHL’s best road team with a 16-3-0-2 record. Syracuse’s well-balanced offense is piloted by second-year pro Tyler Johnson, whose 20 goals and 35 points place him second and fifth among the AHL’s top scorers, respectively. A Calder Cup winner with Norfolk in 2011-12, Johnson also ranks tied for sixth in the AHL with seven power-play goals while appearing in all but one game for Syracuse this season. With 17 points (9+8) in his last 13 games, Alex Killorn currently ranks third in scoring among league rookies with 30 points (13+17) in 36 games.
UP NEXT: The Amerks hit the ice again on Wednesday, Jan. 16th as Rochester heads to the southern tier for the sixth of eight meetings with the Binghamton Senators this season. Game time is slated for a 7:05 p.m. start and will be carried live on Sports 1280 WHTK.