The one positive out of Saturday nights game on the road against the Hershey Bears is that it was a better game than the previous two. Evgeny Dadonov, Chris Taylor, Jamie Johnson, and Daniel Steiner all had two point games. In the end the Bears were able to take advantage of a weak defense and scored a few easy goals.
There was no scoring in the first period and it was a pretty even period with the Amerks having more scoring chances.
Jimmy Bonneau and Grant McNeill dropped the gloves at 2:57 of the third period and put on a good fight. Both players got a few good punches in. I’d give the edge to Bonneau since a couple of his punchs appeared to buckle McNeills knees.
For the second game in a row the Amerks followed up a fight with a goal. Evgeny Dadonov scored his fourth goal of the season at 3:26 of the second picking a top corner off a great pass by Chris Taylor from the high slot.
It only took Bears Captain Bryan Helmer a measly 38 seconds to score unassisted and tie the game 1-1. Oskar Osala followed up nine seconds later to score and give the Bears a quick 2-1 lead. Osala had no problems taking the puck off the face off and quickly beating Jordan Henry to put the back past Chris Beckford-Tseu.
Newcomer Daniel Steiner scored for the Amerks scoring a power play goal at 11:21 of the second period. He did something very few Amerks have done all season, he went to the net looking for a rebound and it paid off. It was Steiners first career AHL goal. He contributed in a big way throughout the entire game, hopefully they can find a way to keep him around. It was an all around great power play for Steiner, Taylor, Dadonov, Wilson, and Johnson.
The second period ended with the Bears taking a 4-2 lead off two goals in the final three minutes from Alexandre Giroux and Oskar Osala. Giroux scored at 17:03 of the third period with assists to Keith Aucoin and Chris Bourque. Aucoin and Giroux went into the Amerks zone full steam ahead, skated right past Henry and then Aucoin fed a fast pass to Giroux on the opposite end who easily put the puck into the back of the net. Beckford-Tseu had no chance on the play. The fourth goal scored by Oska Osala was pretty much the same exact play with Keith Aucoin feeding a similar pass.
Jamie Johnson stepped up his game in the third period scoring his 11th and 12th goals of the season to tie the game 4-4. The first goal he scored was off a cross ice pass from Daniel Tkaczuk. The second goal of the game scored by Johnson was on the power play with Daniel Steiner standing in front of the net providing the screen.
Mathieu Perreault scored the game winning goal for the Bears at 12:21 of the third period on the power play. Watching the game it seemed as if Perreault had all the time in the world to score the goal. He brought the puck towards the net, faked a shot and watched A.J. Thelen slide across the ice trying to block the shot, watched Beckford-Tseu go down to make a save and then picked his spot and put it in the net.
Beckford-Tseu never should have gone down giving up so much net on that last goal and even though it was the game winning goal the game never should have gotten to that point. The defense was soft yet again allowing the Bears to easily skate around them. The defense was not able to clear rebounds away from the front of the net. The defense let the Bears players wide open for shots and easy goals. Bottom line is that this defense stinks. I know they’re without Keaton Ellerby and Jason Garrison but I’m confident the same things would have happened with them in the lineup.
The Amerks had tried to bring in R.J. Anderson from the Johnstown Chiefs but due to the weather he was not able to make it to the game. Even if he had been able to he’s another offensive defenseman, the last thing the Amerks need at this point.
In the end the Hershey Bears won but the Amerks showed a desire to try and win the game and it almost paid off.
Peter Aston did not play due to illness. Steve MacIntyre was dressed but had very limited ice time. Ernie Hartlieb played defense.
They played the game with 15 minute intermissions and very limited timeouts so the game could be played as quickly as possible to try and get the Amerks out early for the drive back. Hershey was hit by the snow storm along the coast and the Amerks need have a game Sunday afternoon at 5:05pm vs the Hamilton Bulldogs.
Rochester Americans 4 At Hershey Bears 5 – Status: Final
Dec 19, 2009 – Giant Center
Rochester 0 2 2 – 4
Hershey 0 4 1 – 5
1st Period- No Scoring.Penalties-Pinizzotto Her (high-sticking), 7:46; McNeill Her (hooking), 14:45.
2nd Period-1, Rochester, Dadonov 4 (Taylor, Henry), 3:26. 2, Hershey, Helmer 1 4:04. 3, Hershey, Osala 8 (Beagle, Bouchard), 4:13. 4, Rochester, Steiner 1 (Wilson, Taylor), 11:21 (pp). 5, Hershey, Giroux 11 (Aucoin, Bourque), 17:03. 6, Hershey, Osala 9 (Aucoin, Giroux), 19:23 (pp). Penalties-Bonneau Rch (fighting), 2:57; McNeill Her (fighting), 2:57; Aucoin Her (slashing), 10:37; Caruso Rch (hooking), 11:46; McNeill Her (tripping), 14:50; Bonneau Rch (hooking), 18:16.
3rd Period-7, Rochester, Johnson 11 (Tkaczuk, Steiner), 5:34. 8, Rochester, Johnson 12 (Dadonov, Wilson), 9:09 (pp). 9, Hershey, Perreault 2 (Osala, Bouchard), 12:21 (pp). Penalties-Steiner Rch (holding), 3:26; McNeill Her (hooking), 7:40; Wilson Rch (tripping), 11:03; Tkaczuk Rch (interference), 12:21; Wilson Rch (delay of game), 12:52.
Shots on Goal-Rochester 11-14-4-29. Hershey 8-11-14-33.
Power Play Opportunities-Rochester 2 of 5; Hershey 2 of 6.
Goalies-Rochester, Beckford-Tseu 0-2-0 (33 shots-28 saves). Hershey, Bacashihua 6-2-1 (29 shots-25 saves).
Referees-David Banfield (44).
Linesmen-Scott Adams (20), Bob Goodman (90).