Monsters Cap Lengthy Road Trip With 2-1 Win Over Griffins

Gaunce, Motte score, Korpisalo stops 35 in final game of season-long seven-game trek.

The Cleveland Monsters, proud American Hockey League affiliate of the NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets, defeated the Grand Rapids Griffins on Saturday at Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, MI by a final score of 2-1. With the win, the Monsters improved to 11-19-3-3 overall this season and with a .389 points percentage, remain alone in seventh place in the AHL’s Central Division standings.

After the first two periods slid by scoreless, Cleveland’s Cameron Gaunce posted an even-strength goal at 1:01 of the third on feeds from Zac Dalpe and Alex Broadhurst, and Tyler Motte followed that with a power-play strike at 4:25, set up by assists from Carter Camper and Dean Kukan, to make it 2-0 Monsters. Grand Rapids drew within one with a Matt Puempel even-strength goal at 19:40 of the third, but the Monsters held on for a 2-1 victory.

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Gaunce’s Saturday appearance was the 226th of his Monsters career, moving him past former Cleveland forward Andrew Agozzino into first place on the franchise’s all-time list. Cleveland’s win snapped a five-game winless streak and came in the final game of the Monsters’ season-long seven-game, 13-day road trip during which Cleveland posted a 2-4-0-1 record. Cleveland goaltender Joonas Korpisalo improved to 2-2-1 this season by virtue of a 35-save performance while Griffins backstop Tom McCollum fell to 5-8-3 despite stopping 23 of the 25 pucks he faced.

Next up for the Monsters, it’s a Wednesday home tilt vs. the Rockford IceHogs with full coverage, live from The Q, underway at 7:00 pm on Alt 99.1 and the Monsters Hockey Network.

Full and partial season ticket memberships are on sale now and provide you with the best seat locations, custom member benefits and the lowest ticket prices starting at only $10 per game. Group outing and birthday bash packages for 10 or more people are also on sale now. All tickets can be purchased by visiting ClevelandMonsters.com, calling (216) 420-0000, visiting The Q Box Office or any Northern Ohio Discount Drug Mart. Be sure to follow the Monsters on Twitter @monstershockey, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/monstershockey, and on Instagram at www.instagram.com/monstershockey.