ST. JOHN’S, NL – The Syracuse Crunch scored first and never gave up the lead as they worked towards a 5-3 victory over the St. John’s IceCaps this afternoon at the Mile One Centre.
Adam Erne led the charge in snapping a two-game skid with a two-goal game, while Ben Thomas, Cameron Darcy and Mike Halmo contributed one each. The win advances the Crunch to 26-17-4-5 on the season and 3-1-1-1 in the eight-game series against the IceCaps.
Adam Wilcox earned the win with a 27-save performance between the pipes for the Crunch. Charlie Lindgren turned aside 19-of-24 in net for the IceCaps. Syracuse went 2-for-8 on the power play and 4-for-7 on the penalty kill.
The Crunch came out strong and built a 3-0 lead in the first period. At the 5:33 mark, Joel Vermin fired a shot that was turned aside. Thomas came out of nowhere on the right wing to chip in the rebound for his second of the season. Slater Koekkoek recorded the secondary assist. After receiving a pass from Matt Taormina, Adam Comrie powered a rocket from the blue line for Erne to tip down low on the power play 8:51 into the frame.
With 8:18 remaining in the first, Darcy threw a shot on net from an almost impossible angle at the goal line. The puck slid behind Lindgren and across the goal line. Mathieu Brodeur tallied a point on the marker.
The IceCaps finally solved Wilcox with a power-play goal halfway through the middle stanza. Max Friberg passed along the blue line to Chris Terry at the right point. Terry controlled the puck and skated in for a slap shot from the top of the right circle that cut the lead to two.
Just 54 seconds into the third period, Erne lit the lamp for a second time. After Taormina’s shot from the left circle was stopped, Erik Condra tried to shove in the rebound in. He was unable to get past the netminder, but Erne was there during a battle in front of the cage to get a stick on it and record his second of the game.
The IceCaps tallied two power-play goals just twenty seconds apart to pull within one. At the 5:27 mark, Terry fed Charles Hudon on the goal line. He flipped over to the backhand and shoveled the puck in. Seconds later, Terry earned his second of the game with a shot that went crossbar and down from the right circle.
Halfway through the third, Halmo built back a two-goal lead with an insurance marker. He picked up the puck in the slot, skated around a defender and deked past the netminder to tuck the puck in behind him. Yanni Gourde and Vermin assisted on the tally.
The Crunch continue their road trip when they travel to face the Toronto Marlies at 11 a.m. on Wednesday.
Syracuse Crunch single game and ticket packages for the 2016-17 season are on sale now and can be purchased either in person at the Crunch office located in the War Memorial Arena at 800 S. State St. in Syracuse or by calling the office at 315-473-4444. For the latest Crunch news, visit www.syracusecrunch.com or follow the club on Facebook (www.facebook.com/syracusecrunch), Twitter (@SyracuseCrunch) and Instagram (@syracusecrunch) using #SyrCrunch, #WeAreOne and #BLUnited.
Crunchables: Matt Taormina recorded a team-high 11th multipoint performance today.