Devils Earn Crucial Victory
ALBANY, NY -- In what Jay Leach called a "must-win game" afterwards, the Albany Devils knocked off the Hershey Bears, 5-3, Friday at Times Union Center. Several Albany players enjoyed milestone performances as the Devils earned two crucial points towards a Calder Cup Playoff berth.
Jay Leach recorded the first two-goal performance of his career, Cam Janssen had his first multi-point game and Jon Merrill registered his first professional point. Joe Whitney registered his career-high 24th goal and Darcy Zajac netted his career-best ninth tally. Additionally, J.S. Berube registered his first point of the season with an assist. In goal, Keith Kinkaid stopped 28 shots on 31 attempts.
Peter LeBlanc got the Bears on the board first with a power-play goal at 4:20 of the first, but the Devils responded with three unanswered goals. Janssen erased the Bears lead after 68 seconds and Zajac and Leach put the Devils ahead with a pair of goals in the second at 3:18 and 7:04, respectively.
Casey Wellman cut into Albany's lead at 12:36 of the second, but Whitney restored the two goal advantage, beating Dany Sabourin over the left shoulder from a tight angle at 1:33 of the third. Joey Crabb brought the Bears back within one at 5:04 of the third until Leach added an empty-netter at 19:17 of the third.
Sabourin was brought in to replace Philipp Grubauer in the second period. Grubauer made 4 saves on 7 shots while Sabourin stopped 7 shots on 8 attempts.
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