The Rochester Americans cooled off the Western Conference-leading Abbotsford Heat as the Amerks defeated their North Division rivals with a 3-2 shootout win Tuesday night at The Blue Cross Arena. The win was the Amerks’ second in the past three games, improving them to 11-9-2-0 on the season.
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David Leggio made his return to the pipes after a two-game rest, turning away 29 saves in regulation to move within one win of a 100 career victories. Leggio was perfect in the shootout, stopping all six Heat shooters before T.J. Brennan netted the game-winner in the sixth round of the skills competition. Frederick Roy and Luke Adam also scored in regulation for the Amerks.
Brennan, who shares the team lead in goals with nine, appeared to score in overtime with a wrister that went top-shelf past Abbotsford goaltender Barry Brust, but the goal was called off and the teams played on through the scoreless extra session. Brust also finished with 29 saves in the losing effort.
The Amerks broke a scoreless tie with 12:13 remaining in the second period when Roy converted a tic-tac-toe passing play to give the Amerks a 1-0 lead. Marcus Foligno caused a Heat turnover in the corner and quickly sent the puck to Maxime Legault, who one-timed a pass to the top of the crease where Roy buried his second goal of the season.
Less than four minutes later the Heat responded as Dustin Sylvester raced down the wing and fired a wrister over Leggio’s shoulder to tie the game at 1-1 with 8:33 remaining in the second stanza. The unassisted tally was Sylvester’s sixth goal of the season.
Rochester regained the lead with 18 seconds remaining in the second period as Adam deflected Mark Pysyk’s shot from the point just as the Amerk power-play expired. The go-ahead goal was Adam’s second in as many games, which also extends his current point streak to three games.
Former Sabre Paul Byron scored 7:42 into the third period to knot the contest at two apiece. Byron finished off a 2-on-1 rush with Sylvester, who recorded his 12th point of the season and second of the night.
After a scoreless overtime, Brennan scored in the sixth round of the shootout to secure the win for Rochester.
Rochester makes its way to Quicken Loans Arena to take on the Lake Erie Monsters on Thursday, Dec. 13. The 7:05 p.m. matchup will be the first of six meetings between the North Division rivals this season and will be broadcast live on Sports 1280 WHTK.