Monsters Fall To Griffins 6-4
Alden Hirschfeld scored the eventual game-winning goal for the Grand Rapids Griffins (45-21-6-2) with just over six minutes remaining, as the Griffins handed the Lake Erie Monsters (33-29-8-4) a 6-4 loss at Quicken Loans Arena. The loss eliminates the Monsters from playoff contention. Freddie Hamilton, Joey Hishon, Tomas Vincour, and Andrew Agozzino scored for the Monsters. In their last regular season home game, the Monsters host Hamilton Friday at 7:30 p.m.
Grand Rapids scored the game's first two goals to take a 2-0 lead into the late stages of the first period. Just 1:14 into the action, Tomas Nosek weaved up the ice and finished his individual effort with a backand shot that beat Monsters goalie Calvin Pickard, and Marek Tvrdon capped off a backdoor feed at 18:15 of the first period by tapping the puck over the line to give the Griffins a 2-0 lead. Just 22 seconds after Tvrdon's goal, the Monsters cut the Griffins lead to 2-1 when Freddie Hamilton took a pass in the high slot and wristed a shot past Griffins goalie Tom McCollum for his 10th goal of the season, and first as a Monster. Chris Bigras assisted on Hamilton's goal.
Full Game Info:
Joey Hishon tied the game at 12:58 of the second period to tie the game 2-2 when he took an outlet pass from Bigras, streaked in on a breakaway, and backhanded a shot past McCollum. Grand Rapids countered with a pair of goals in the final three minutes of the second period- one from Tyler Bertuzzi and one from Kevin Porter- to give the Griffins a 4-2 lead heading into the second intermission.
Tomas Vincour took a centering pass from Stefan Elliott in front of the net and pulled the Monsters to within a goal 28 seconds into the third period. The goal was the ninth of the season for Vincour, and was also assisted by Hamilton. The Monsters tied the game at 4-4 when Andrew Agozzino scored his team-leading 29th goal of the season at 10:52 of the third period. Ben Street saw Agozzino streaking to the net, and Agozzino redirected the centering pass from Street past McCollum. Reid Petryk also assisted on the goal.
Alden Hirschfeld netted the eventual game-winning goal when he converted on a centering pass from Jeff Hoggan on the right side, giving the Griffins a 5-4 lead dat 13:58 of the third period. Mark Zengerle added an empty-net goal for the Griffins with 35 seconds left to extend the Grand Rapids lead to 6-4.
Pickard stopped 24 of 29 shots in the loss; he is now 21-17-9 on the season. McCollum stopped 26 of 30 shots, and he is now 19-11-6 for Grand Rapids.
The Monsters play Hamilton on Friday in their regular season home finale at 7:30 p.m. The game airs live on ESPN 850 WKNR on radio and will be televised on MY 43 WUAB.
NOTES: The Monsters finish the 10-game seasons series with the Griffins with a record of 5-4-0-1... The Monsters are 17-15-3-2 at home... The loss snaps the Monsters two-game win streak... Vincour has goals in four straight games, and now has six points in his last four games... The Monsters were 0-1 on the power play and the Griffins were 0-2... Follow the Monsters on Twitter @monstershockey, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/lakeeriemonsters, and on Instagram at www.instagram.com/monstershockey.