Crunch Pummel Penguins to Win Fifth in a Row
Wilkes-Barre, PA - Derek MacKenzie extended his point streak to 10 games with a goal and an assist and Kevin Lalande stopped 21 of 22 shots to help the Syracuse Crunch win their season-high fifth straight game, defeating the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins by a 4-1 score tonight before 6,113 fans at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza.
The Crunch have now won six of their last seven road games and return to the War Memorial at Oncneter on Saturday, February 6 at 7:30 p.m. for another important divisional game against the Adirondack Phantoms.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton's Nick Johnson started the game's scoring and gave the Penguins a 1-0 lead on the power play just four minutes into the opening period by depositing a slapper from the left circle past Lalande on a one-timer from Wyatt Smith.
The first of four unanswered Crunch goals came when MacKenzie's shot from the top of the right circle deflected on goal and bounced out to the waiting stick of Grant Clitsome, who punched the rebound over John Curry to knot the score at 1-1 at the 17:32 mark of the first.
The power play goal gave the Crunch a man-advantage marker in nine straight games.
Syracuse struck again just two and a half minutes into the second stanza when Trevor Frischmon gained the offensive zone and dished the disk to Maksim Mayorov on the right side boards. Mayorov let go a quick wrister that fooled Curry and pushed the Crunch out to a 2-1 advantage.
MacKenzie was in on the action again at the 11:32 mark of the second, this time getting the goal by snapping a shot to the top right corner on a one-time feed from linemate Tomas Kana, who extended his own point streak to five games with the helper. The Crunch's second power play score of the game made it 3-1.
Just over three minutes later, the Crunch extended their lead to 4-1 when Dan Fritsche fed Mike Radja at center point and he turned and fired a bullet that eluded Curry for his seventh tally of the year and third in the last two games.
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American Hockey League Stories from February 5, 2010
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