Game 7 Preview

It’s All on the Line Tonight

After the Monsters held leads of 1-0, 2-1 and 3-1 in this series, they find themselves in a pivotal Game 7 after surrendering Game 5 (2-0) and Game 6 (3-1) to the Manitoba Moose.

By the Numbers

In terms of special teams, the Monsters have been exceptional throughout this series. While there power play has gone 6-for-28 (21.4%) through the six games, their penalty kill has denied 25 of Manitoba’s 26 power play attempts (96.2%).

After Lake Erie held Manitoba scoreless through their first 25 power play chances in this series, the Moose finally found the back of the net when Keith Seabrook netted a go-ahead goal on the power play at 7:36 of the third period in Game 6.

Lake Erie’s PK has posted a combined 45-for-46 (97.8%) effort against Manitoba through the regular season and postseason combined.

Keep an Eye on These Guys

Offensively, the Monsters are led by Justin Mercier and Ben Walter, as both have recorded three goals and two assists in this series.

Mercier provided Lake Erie with a three-point (2G, 1A) effort in Game 4, while two of his goals have been scored in shorthanded situations.

Walter recorded at least a point in each of the first four games of this series, including a two-point (1G, 1A) outing in Game 4.

Rookie center Mark Olver recorded two-point outings in Game 1 (1G, 1A) and Game 4 (1G, 1A).

Manitoba’s top gun in this series has been Marco Rosa. Including an assist on Sergei Shirokov’s empty-net tally in Game 6, Rosa has posted 10 points (3G, 7A) in this series.

Shirokov (4G, 2A) and Jason Jaffray (2G, 4A) have both recorded six points in this series.

Between the Pipes

In Game 6, John Grahame made his fourth start of the series for Lake Erie. With wins in Games 3 and 4, and losses in Games 2 and 6, Grahame holds a 2-2 playoff record to go along with a 2.45 GAA and a .930 save percentage.

Jason Bacashihua backstopped Lake Erie’s victory in Game 1, and with a loss in Game 6, he is 1-1 with a 2.54 GAA and a .909 save percentage.

Eddie Lack has gone the distance for Manitoba in the last two games of this series. In Game 5 on Friday night, Lack went 26-for-26 in a shutout for the Moose. Lack has appeared in four of the six games in this series, posting a 2-1 record with a remarkable 1.77 GAA and a .931 save percentage.

Former Monster Tyler Weiman has gone 1-2 in four appearances for the Moose, along with a 3.01 GAA and a .896 save percentage. Weiman, who spent three years as a Monster (2007-2010), ranks first among all-time Lake Erie goaltenders in games played (118), wins (51) and shutouts (13).

Winner Heads to Hamilton

The winner of tonight’s contest will advance to play the Hamilton Bulldogs in the North Division finals. The Bulldogs, who finished the regular season in first place in the North Division with 97 points, concluded a 4-2 series on Sunday afternoon when they posted a 4-1 victory in a Game 6 against the Oklahoma City Barons.

Broadcaster Ben Holden previews tonight’s Game 7 action at Quicken Loans Arena.

Holden also discussed tonight’s game with head coach David Quinn.

Defenseman Julien Brouillette, who has appeared in all six games for the Monsters in this series, also spoke with Holden about tonight’s contest.

Rookie center Mark Olver, who has recorded a pair of two-point outings in this series (Game 1, Game 4) also discussed tonight’s game with Holden.

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