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The final pro hockey game at the Spectrum has been played.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Phantoms vs. Grand Rapids Griffins, 3-29-09

I missed some of the awards that were handed out pregame, but it was nice to have been with the rest of the PPPC board to present the Unsung Hero award to David Laliberte. :)

SCOOOOORE! Today, it's OUR turn to score on -our first shot of the game! e had just killed a penalty to Matsumoto when we got down to the Griffins' end to try; and get some offense of our own going. Syvret from Matsumoto and Maroon. SOG at the time of the goal were Phantoms 1, GR 4.

McGrath would have had a nice shot on goal against us, but as he was skating in, the puck rolled off his stick at the hash marks, and it ended up in his skates. Threat averted.

Grand Rapids has come out with a lot of jump this afternoon. They want to avenge last night's loss in a manor way, methinks. But the Phantoms came out with high energy, as well, so we are standing up to what they have been throwing at us. Nodl is called up to the Flyers. In his stead, Kempe is on the line with Szwez and Kalinski. Clackson and Raduns are on the fourth line, but I can't see who their other forward is. Ross/Kane/Sirianni and Matsumoto/Laliberte/Maroon are together, as usual.

Ross just placed his stick blade on the ice to block a GR slapshot attempt. The attacker's stick hit Ross's stick so hard, it went flying out of Ross's hands, but the slapshot was aborted in mid-slap.

Ah, now I can see that Beaulieu is with Clackson and Raduns. :)

Heck, we had a scramble in the GR goalmouth that had the fans behind the net screaming. Even the goal judge was fooled to the point where the red light went on. Unfortunately, nobody told the PUCK to cooperate and go in, so it remained outside the net and the score remains 1-0.

However, we have a PECOOOO POWER PLAY going, so let's see what we can do to increase that lead. So far we are 30 seconds into the man advantage, and we have three SOG. Aah, we took a screened shot and it hit the goalie, Howard, who never saw the puck and didn't react until it bounced off him.

However, we made up for it by scoring a goal on our NEXT shot. Sirianni, which apparently is Italian for "En Fuego", scores with assists from Kane and Ross. SOG Phantoms 10, Griffins 7.

And Curry goes to the sin bin seconds later. Nice clear by Laliberte. OHHH Matsumoto snares the puck just after a failed keep-in, and tries to get a breakaway just as we go back to even strength, but the puck rolled on him.

At the end of the first period, the score is Phantoms 2, Griffins 0.; SOG are Phantoms 10, Griffins 8. The Phantoms' most recent shot was our second goal, and the Griffins got one shot during their recent PP.
About three and a half minutes into the period, we go on a PECOOOO POWER PLAY. Ross, Kane, Sirianni, Kukkonen, and Syvret are out. Somehow the Griffins have ended up in our end while shorthanded, but their shot attempt never reached our net. The end result was that neither team registered a shot during our man advantage.
The ref is taking a lot of time to explain something, I know not what, to the Phantoms and Griffins on the ice, and then to one lone Griffin in the officials' crease. End result, a few minutes later, was a delay of game penalty on GR.

However, GR proceeded to set up in OUR end again, the same as during the last PP. Then we got a penalty of our own, and wound up at 4 on 4 with 1:18 left in the PP. Matsumoto and Laliberte had the fans screaming with the chances they were getting, one after another, but they were all near-misses. (and none registered as shots on goal.) Then we got a penalty and wound up at 4-on-3 for a while... until the Griffins got their guy back and we wound up with two-man disadvantage. We withstood that onslaught until Kane came out to make it a regular 5-on-4 PK. Just as we returned to even stength, Munroe made the save of the game so far. NICE stop, which got the "Unbelievable" song. :)

Looks like we did get a shot credited to us on that PP after all. Last night and today, it's taken a few moments longer than usual for some things to make an appearance on the scoreboard. I suspect that either the system is acting up, or someone who is less than familiar with the controls has been taking care of posting the data. With 9:18 left in the period, SOG are Phantoms 13, Griffins 15.

After a scrum in the GR crease, the Grifins got a guy sent off for roughing, so we get another attempt at the PECOOOO POWER PLAY. Matsumoto's line is out with Syvret and Kukkonen. aah nice chances, guys. But at the stoppage of play, we change forwards and Ross's line comes out, and GR gets a delay-of-game infraction. So we have a two-man advantage for over a minute.

Oh, WHAT is this ref calling? With 35 seconds left in the 5-on-3, it goes down to a 4-on-3 as Kane gets sent off. Interference, my foot. Sigh.

MATSYYYY scores when we are at 4-on-4! Apparently, "Matsumoto" is Japanese for "En Fuego". :) Assists to Syvret and Kukkonen.

With 32 seconds remaining in the penalty to Kane, GR gets a penalty, so we will go back to 4 on 4 briefly. There were a few moments of concern when the puck got cleared into our bench, but then Matsumto popped up like a purple-clad Jack-in-the-box. Crazy kid! :)

KALINSKIIII with the gorgeous wraparound! He jammed the puck in at the post hard enough to have put the disk through a cinderblock wall. Howard tried to get his skate over to block it, but he was just a moment too late. Assists from Szwez and Raduns. 4-0 Phantoms and it's the last minute of play in the second period.

At the end of the period, the SOG are Phantoms 20, Griffins 17.
Nice save by Munroe, including a little Patty Roy flourish, two minutes into the period. By that time, GR had evened the shots at 20 apiece.

NUTS. Munroe went to make a pad save a minute later, but lost the shutout when it hit his leg pad and kept going in. 4-1 Phantoms.

With 14:28 left in the period, GR is getting a penalty. SOG are Phantons 20, Griffns 25.

Aaah, Ross had a scoring chance in the slot, but Howard tracked him all the way and made the stop. And WHAT is the deal with us windnig up in OUR doggoned end while WE are on the PP?

Actually, we are now just over halfway into the period (9:42 left) and I'm not pleased with the amount of time we have spent in front of Scott Munroe. It's not going to help matters that Szwez just went to the sin bin. SOG are Phantoms 23, Griffins 27. GR has had about a shot per minute since the third frame began.

OK, we killed the penalty safely, and just got the announcement that the Flyers lead the Bruins 1-0 on a goal by Claude Giroux. :) So that was a good few minutes, all told. :)

Curry/Bartulis seems to be a new D pair for the time being. Ratchuk and Kukkonen are both on the bench, though, so it isn't due to an injury. We seem to have gone to two D pairs.

With 46 seconds left, Matsumoto gets a penalty and GR calls a timeout.

Ross, Kane, Syvret, and Guennin are out and the GR net is empty. We come close to scoring on a lonnnnnng clearing attempt, but the disk just misses the net.

And we win! The final score is Phantoms 4, Grand Rapids 1. We just picked up two points on the Senators. Great job!

Next up, we have a home game on Wednesday night. Go Phantoms!

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