Berggren's Four Assists Lift Griffins over Monsters, 5-3
CLEVELAND - Five different Griffins scored when Grand Rapids took a 5-3 victory over the Cleveland Monsters on Tuesday at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. Jonatan Berggren notched a career-high four assists in the contest, which also set a new single-game high for any Griffin this season.
Berggren's four helpers were one shy of tying the Griffins rookie single-game record of five assists set by Tomas Tatar (11/27/10) and Chris Bala (1/10/02). The Swede has points (1-10-11) in seven of the last eight contests. Kyle Criscuolo added another goal, giving him a team-high 12 on the campaign. Both Berggren (1-5-6) and Taro Hirose (2-2-4) extended their point streaks to three games while Jon Martin registered his first goal of the season. Grand Rapids now has points in nine of its last 10 games (6-1-2-1).
In the first period, Grand Rapids opened the scoring at 4:41 on a give-and-go between Hirose and Berggren. Berggren at the right-wing corner received the puck from Hirose and then found the former Michigan State Spartan in the slot, who beat the right leg of netminder Jean Francois-Berube.
With 12:47 remaining in the first, Tyler Angle took the puck behind the net and used the famous "Michigan" move to put the rubber above the right shoulder of Calvin Pickard to tie the contest 1-1.
The Griffins controlled the second period, as the shots favored Grand Rapids 11-4. At 2:13 and on a 4-on-4, Berggren connected with Tyler Spezia as he skated down the slot going left to right and tucked the disc in the left corner of the net, giving the Griffins a 2-1 lead.
On the Griffins first power play opportunity, an initial shot from Hirose was stopped by Berube but he was unable to keep hold of the puck. Turner Elson secured the rebound and scored his 11th goal of the season with 16:24 remaining.
Down two going into the final frame, Cleveland quickly reduced the deficit to one at 1:25. Carson Meyer drew the defense and connected with Angle who waited at the goal mouth. Angle then found his second of the night when he sent a one-timer past the glove of Pickard.
With 13:51 left in the third, a back-and-forth play between Martin and Erik Bradford extended Grand Rapids' lead. Martin passed to Bradford who then feathered the puck back to Martin, as he put the rubber past Berube.
Berggren's career-high fourth helper to Criscuolo added another on the board for the Griffins at 10:59. The rookie took an initial shot but was deflected. Criscuolo got to the rebound and fired a backhander past the outstretched glove of Berube, giving Grand Rapids a 5-2 advantage.
Late in the period, Dylan Simpson made a centering pass through traffic to Adam Helewka. Helewka sent a wrister between the blockers of Pickard with 7:29 left in the game to make it 5-3.
The Griffins' penalty kill was tested with 1:58 remaining when the Monsters went on a 6-on-4 advantage. Grand Rapids did not allow a single shot and pushed its point streak against Cleveland to three games (2-0-1-0).
*Bradford recorded his 300th point as a pro.
*Veteran Brian Lashoff notched his 100th assist as a pro.
Grand Rapids 1 2 2 - 5
Cleveland 1 0 2 - 3
1st Period-1, Grand Rapids, Hirose 9 (Berggren, McIsaac), 4:41. 2, Cleveland, Angle 3 (Sikura, Berni), 8:13. Penalties-McKenzie Gr (high-sticking), 13:24.
2nd Period-3, Grand Rapids, Spezia 7 (Berggren, Lashoff), 2:13. 4, Grand Rapids, Elson 11 (Hirose, Berggren), 4:36 (PP). Penalties-Renouf Gr (tripping), 1:02; Angle Cle (tripping), 1:02; Simpson Cle (elbowing), 3:17; Schemitsch Cle (delay of game), 6:32.
3rd Period-5, Cleveland, Angle 4 (Meyer), 1:25. 6, Grand Rapids, Martin 1 (Bradford), 6:09. 7, Grand Rapids, Criscuolo 12 (Berggren, Elson), 10:59. 8, Cleveland, Helewka 6 (Simpson, Schemitsch), 12:31. Penalties-Meyer Cle (cross-checking), 15:26; Criscuolo Gr (holding), 18:02.
Shots on Goal-Grand Rapids 14-11-6-31. Cleveland 14-4-13-31.
Power Play Opportunities-Grand Rapids 1 / 3; Cleveland 0 / 2.
Goalies-Grand Rapids, Pickard 13-8-4 (31 shots-28 saves). Cleveland, Berube 4-5-3 (31 shots-26 saves).
1. GR Berggren (four assists); 2. GR Hirose (goal, assist); 3. CLE Angle (two goals)
Record / Next Game
Grand Rapids: 15-11-4-2 (36 pts.) / Sat., Jan. 22 vs. Milwaukee 7 p.m.
Cleveland: 12-11-4-3 (31 pts.) / Fri., Jan. 21 vs. Rochester 7 p.m.
Images from this story
Grand Rapids Griffins left wing Jonatan Berggren
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