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Over the weekend the Monsters established a season-high three-game winning streak and wrapped up their second three-in-three set of the season. The streak included two wins over Grand Rapids and a victory over Toronto, before a 5-2 setback in Chicago. Lake Erie’s stretch of eight games in 11 days will continue on Tuesday with a rematch against the Wolves.
Monsters and Marlies
On Friday the Monsters were tested by Toronto, who entered Quicken Loans Arena on the strength of a 6-0-0-3 record in their previous nine games. The Marlies had not lost in regulation since October 30th when Lake Erie handed them a 4-1 loss at Ricoh Coliseum.
The Monsters claimed a 2-1 come-from-behind victory over their North Division rival, as unassisted goals from Ryan Stoa and Mike Carman brought Lake Erie out of a one-goal deficit in the second period.
Jason Bacashihua made 33 saves on 34 shots, tying a season high for saves in a game by a Lake Erie goaltender. Toronto’s goal at 2:09 of the second period snapped Bacashihua’s shutout streak of 95:51, a span that saw parts of three games (Nov. 12 vs. Milwaukee; Nov. 17 vs. Grand Rapids; Nov. 19 vs. Toronto).
Friday’s win concluded Lake Erie’s season-high eight-game home stand, a stretch in which the Monsters posted a 4-2-1-1 record at Quicken Loans Arena.
Saturday's Rematch with Griffins
The Monsters met the Griffins for the second time in four days on Saturday (Nov. 17, 3-0 W). With a 3-1 win at Van Andel Arena, the Monsters improved their season record to 2-0-0-1 against Grand Rapids.
Lake Erie was propelled by goals from Luke Walker, Ben Walter and Ryan Stoa. Defenseman Kevin Montgomery assisted Walter and Stoa for his first multi-point game of the season.
Trevor Cann recorded his first win of the campaign for Lake Erie, stopping 32 of 33 shots faced.
With Saturday’s win, the Monsters improved their record to 6-1-0-1 in North Division play. Their only loss within the division came in 6-3 fashion to Manitoba back on October 29th, but Lake Erie answered just two days later, blanking the Moose 2-0 in a rematch at Quicken Loans Arena.
On Sunday, November 21st, Lake Erie’s three-game winning streak was snapped by a 5-2 loss to the Chicago Wolves.
The Monsters outshot the Wolves by a 35-24 count, but a hat trick by Andre Deveaux paced Chicago to their second win in as many games (Nov. 20 vs. Houston, 5-2).
Center Mark Olver scored a pair of power play goals for Lake Erie. Olver leads the team in goals (7) and points (13) through 15 games played.
Former Monster Darren Haydar scored a power play tally and forward Spencer Machacek also scored for Chicago.
Peter Mannino provided an impressive 33-save performance in net for Chicago, while Bacashihua went 19-for-24 in net for Lake Erie.
Monsters on the Kill
Before Haydar’s power play goal at 12:46 of the second period on Sunday, the Monsters had denied the opposition’s previous 30 attempts with the man advantage. Lake Erie was perfect on the kill for six consecutive games during that stretch (Nov. 10-Nov. 20).
With a 94.2% efficiency, Lake Erie owns the AHL’s best home penalty killing unit, while they rank second overall at 89.2%.
Center Julian Talbot and defenseman Cameron Gaunce lead the Monsters with plus-9 ratings. Defenseman Travis Gawryletz holds a plus-4, while Kevin Montgomery and Curtis Fraser are plus-3.
Overall, 11 players in Lake Erie’s lineup have at least an even rating.
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