Monsters Come Up Short in Shootout

The result was the same, but the performance was much different.

After getting blown out, 3-2, at home by Toronto on Friday, Lake Erie looked like a different team in Sunday's loss to the same Marlies. The visiting Monsters fell 3-2 in a shootout in Toronto on Sunday afternoon, completing a weekend home-and-home between the North Division rivals. Lake Erie put two more shots on goal than Toronto on Sunday, after getting out-shot by the Marlies by 15 on Friday. The Monsters are now 7-10-0-2, while Toronto improves to 8-7-1-2.

The two teams kept pace with each other throughout the first period, as Lake Erie got off 11 shots compared to nine from the Marlies. Neither team, however, was able to find the back of the net, as the first frame came and went with no score.

Lake Erie would strike first, getting on the scoreboard five minutes into the second period. Monsters leading scorer Chris Durno scored his team-best eighth goal of the season at 4:59 of the middle frame. Marty Sertich and Brock Bradford picked up the assists.

It looked as though the second period might end with Lake Erie maintaining their 1-0 advantage, before the Monsters added to their lead with just two minutes to go in the session. Captain Brian Willsie scored his sixth of the year, assisted by Darren Haydar at 17:55 on the power play. Haydar leads the Monsters with eight assists this season, and is tied with Durno for the most points (14) on the year. Lake Erie doubled up Toronto on shots in the period, 12-6.

Whatever Toronto head coach Dallas Eakins said to his team during the second intermission must have worked, because the Marlies took over from the start of the third period. Alex Foster put Toronto on the board just a minute into the frame, scoring at 1:17 on the power play. He was assisted by Christian Hanson and Juraj Mikus.

Just a minute-and-a-half later, the Marlies tied it up behind a goal from Jiri Tlusty. Foster and Andre Deveaux picked up helpers on the score at the 2:52 mark.

The Marlies out-shot the Monsters, 11-7, in the last period of regulation, but after the two goals in the first three minutes, the score would not change for the remainder of the game. The teams went into overtime with the 2-2 score.

The five-minute sudden death frame would see neither team find an advantage, sending the game to a shootout.

Toronto would shoot first, and would ultimately connect on two of their four attempts. The Monsters could not get anything by Marlies netminder James Reimer, as they struck out on all four of their shots. Matt Beleskey and Tyler Bozak's successful conversions gave Toronto the 3-2 victory.

Lake Erie goalie Tyler Weiman recorded 27 saves on 29 shots faced, while his Marlies counterpart posted 30 saves on 32 shots.

The two teams will play their third straight game against each other on Wednesday at 11:00 a.m. in Toronto.

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