(Toronto, ON) … Despite registering 16 shots during the third period of Wednesday night’s Game 3 of the North Division Semifinals, the Rochester Americans (0-3) fell 3-1 to the defending Calder Cup Champion Toronto Marlies (3-0) at Coca-Cola Coliseum. The Marlies win the best-of-five series 3-0.
Forward Tage Thompson scored his second goal of the postseason in the second period from C.J. Smith and Kevin Porter while netminder Scott Wedgewood made 17 saves but suffered the loss in the Amerks crease, his third of the playoffs.
WATCH: GAME HIGHLIGHTS
Second-year forward Adam Brooks notched his first-career professional hat trick to lead the Marlies, who boast an 18-5 postseason record dating back to the start of last year’s playoffs. Netminder Kasimir Kaskisuo drew the nod for Toronto and stopped 28 of 29 shots. The goaltender finished the three-game sweep allowing four goals to go with a 1.32 goals-against average and a .960 save percentage.
After Thompson evened the score at 1-1 midway through the second period while on the power-play, Rochester’s first tally of the series with the man-advantage, Brooks redirected his second goal of the night to regain Toronto’s one-goal advantage at the 11:37 mark.
WATCH: CHRIS TAYLOR POST-GAME
The Marlies took the one-goal lead into the third period and the score remained the same until the final 36 seconds of regulation when Brooks sealed the win as he capped off the three-goal night while Wedgewood was pulled for the extra attacker.
“We had a great regular-season, but it’s tough when you lose the first two games of a five-game series,” said Porter. “We have a hell of a group in that locker room. The playoffs are a different style of game and I hope the younger guys can learn from this experience.”
WATCH: ZACH REDMOND POST-GAME
“It’s extremely frustrating,” Zach Redmond said when talking about the team’s second straight three-game sweep. “The last two seasons, I thought we had a really strong group who could have made a deep run, but that’s the playoffs. Getting swept is about as bad as it could possibly get.”
Toronto used the home crowd to its advantage as they opened the scoring just 1:26 into the contest thanks to Brooks’ second tally of the postseason and first tally of night. Collecting the puck to the right of Wedgewood, Carcone circled the net before attempting a centering pass to Mason Marchment. Carcone’s pass hopped over the stick of Marchment and was chipped into the net by Brooks, who snuck in the back-door.
WATCH: KEVIN PORTER POST-GAME
“I thought in the first two periods we were a little tight,” Amerks head coach Chris Taylor said. “I felt we kind of sat back at times and were nervous to make a mistake. In the third period we had some opportunities but just could not get one by their goaltender.”
“We had the intensity and the desperation but just could not find a way to win,” Thompson said. “It was a do-or-die situation for us, obviously, but a disappointing ending. The guys had such a great regular-season and it stings really bad.”
WATCH: TAGE THOMPSON POST-GAME
Game 1 | Friday, April 19 – Toronto (4) at Rochester (1) | Toronto leads 1-0
Game 2 | Sunday, April 21 – Toronto (3) at Rochester (2) OT | Toronto leads 2-0
Game 3 | Wednesday, April 24 – Rochester (1) at Toronto (3) | Toronto win series 3-0
ROC: Thompson (2)
TOR: Brooks (2, 3 – GWG, 4)
ROC: Wedgewood – 17/19 (L)
TOR: Kaskisuo – 28/29 (W)
ROC: PP (1/3) | PK (3/3)
TOR: PP (0/3) | PK (2/3)
1. Adam Brooks (TOR)
2. Kasimir Kaskisuo (TOR)
3. Michael Carcone (TOR)