Back-to-Back Losses in Manitoba

The Lake Erie Monsters were hoping to start the new year out with a win, but the Manitoba Moose got in the way of that.  The Monsters dropped a 4-2 decision on the road on New Year's Day.

After Monday's loss, where all three of Manitoba's goals came on the power play, Lake Erie again could not stop the Moose advantage on Tuesday.  Two of the Moose's four scores occurred on the man advantage.  Manitoba finished the night 2/5 on the power play, while the Monsters went 0/4, not converting for the second game in a row. 

The Moose lit the lamp first on Tuesday, when Michael Grabner scored on a power play at the 10:20 mark of the opening stanza.  He was assisted by Greg Classen and Milan Gajic.  Lake Erie responded just seven minutes later, as Jamie Lundmark found the back of the net for the third straight game.  Assists on the Lundmark goal were given to Michael Vernace and Johnny Boychuk at 17:36.

Manitoba controlled the middle period, scoring twice.  Just after returning from intermission, Mathieu Melanson put the Moose up, scoring off helpers from Rick Rypien and Chris Blight at :46.  Maxime Fortunus added to the Moose lead, scoring on the advantage at the 15:48 point.  Luc Bourdon and Danny Groulx assisted on the score. 

Lake Erie got within striking distance when Matt Hussey scored at 9:36 of the third period, assisted by Vernace and Jones.  Vernace's double assist duty on the night put him back in position as the top assist man on the Monsters with 14.

The Moose then wasted little time putting the game out of reach, as Alexandre Bolduc immediately scored at 10:33, resulting in the final 4-2 score.

Mike Wall started between the pipes for Lake Erie, stopping 25 of the 29 shots he faced.  Cory Schneider was in goal at the other end of the ice, blocking 28 of 30 shots on the night.

The Monsters will have a couple days to rest before traveling to Rockford to face the IceHogs on Saturday.  The game will be televised live on FSN Ohio, beginning at 8:05 p.m. ET. 

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