Calls of the Week with Ben Holden

Hello again Monsters fans and welcome to another action packed edition of “Calls of the Week”. It’s been an amazing ride so far this season with our guys! They continue to set franchise records and continue their push toward the 2011 Calder Cup playoffs, which would mark the Monsters first playoff berth in the four-year history of our proud franchise!

Let’s drop the puck on last Wednesday’s game against the Rockford Ice Hogs, the same Rockford team that beat the Monsters 3-2 at The Q back on March 5th. After that loss, the Monsters reeled off a franchise record eight straight wins, and that win streak was on the line last Wednesday at The Q with 7,112 fans in attendance. Early in the game the Monsters drew first blood with a goal up the left wing by Monsters Forward Julian Talbot. Here’s how Monsters play-by-play announcer Ben Holden described the first goal of the game on ESPN 850 WKNR.

Rockford came back to tie the game at 1-1 before Monsters forward and alternate captain Matt Ford came back with a hard-working goal on top of the crease. Ford got some help from his fellow line mates in Julian Talbot and Justin Mercier. Here’s the call of the 2-1 go-ahead goal by the Monsters.

Goaltender Jason Bacashihua stopped close to 40 shots in the game, and later in the second period with the Monsters still leading 2-1, Cash made a big stop to deny Jeff Taffe.

Early in the third period, with the game tied at 2-2, Rockford defenseman Brian Connelly jumped into the rush and unfortunately was able to score the go-ahead goal, a goal that proved to be the game winner.

The Monsters had their franchise best eight-game winning streak snapped as Rockford skated to a 3-2 victory. David Quinn’s team had little time to relax and think about the loss, because two nights later they had a North Division showdown with the Hamilton Bulldogs. Going into that game, the Monsters held a 5-2-0-0 overall record against Hamilton, while they were 3-0-0-0 on home ice against the Bulldogs. The Monsters had chances early in the game on the power play, and here’s one sequence in which the Monsters swarmed the net.

Early in the second period, with the Monsters trailing 2-0, defenseman Steve Oleksy dropped the gloves with Hamilton forward Andrew Conboy. Here’s how that tilt at The Q sounded.

Later in the second period, the Monsters continued to swarm the net and generate scoring chances against the Bulldogs. Rookie forward and former Ohio State Buckeye, Peter Boyd, was involved in this particular sequence. Here’s how it sounded.

Later in the second period, Lake Erie captain Ben Walter made an amazing end-to-end rush and capped it off with Lake Erie's lone goal of the game. Here’s how Holden described the play that made it a 2-1 game.

In the third period, with the Monsters down 3-1 and in search of instant offense, rookie Luke Walker did his best to try and cut the deficit to 3-2.

The Monsters put heavy pressure on the Hamilton net in the final minute of the game, but couldn’t cash in and the Bulldogs salted away their win with a goal by J.T. Wyman in the final minute.

So the Monsters packed up the bus and headed to Toronto for a key North Division matchup. The Monsters had won three straight against the Marlies, and five of six meetings so far in the regular season series. Monsters captain Ben Walter picked up where he left off on Friday, getting the Monsters on the board first. Here’s how Ben Holden called the first goal of the game Saturday afternoon at Ricoh Coliseum on AM 1220.

Patrick Bordeleau was very physical in the game on Saturday with his line mates Curtis Fraser and Zach Cohen. Here’s a big hit delivered by Bordy on Toronto forward Dusty Collins.

Throughout the course of the game Jason Bacashihua came up big time and time again, making several key stops to keep the Marlies off the scoreboard throughout the game to mark his third shutout of the season. All three of them have come against North Division opponents. Here are three highlights from Cash on Saturday.

In the final seconds of the game, David van der Gulik capped off the 2-0 shutout victory with an empty-net goal. The win put the Monsters just two points away from clinching their first ever playoff berth.

All in all, another action packed edition of the “Calls of the Week” from the Monsters. Hope to see you at The Q Wednesday and Saturday to cheer the Monsters on for their final two regular season home games!


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