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Griffins Fall 6-2, Split Series With Manitoba

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GRAND RAPIDS GRIFFINS 2 at Manitoba Moose 6

Jonathan Kozub/Manitoba Moose

WINNIPEG, Manitoba - The Grand Rapids Griffins had their five-game point streak snapped on Saturday as the Manitoba Moose notched a 6-2 win at Bell MTS Place to avenge a 4-1 loss on Thursday and force a series split.

With the loss, the Griffins fall back to 0.500 with a 6-6-0-1 record. In addition to the five-game point streak, Manitoba (7-6-0-0) broke Grand Rapids’ three-game win streak, both overall and on the road.

The Griffins return to action at Van Andel Arena from Nov. 14-23 as they kick off a four-game stretch at home. Grand Rapids will begin by hosting the Rockford IceHogs on Wednesday, Nov. 14, at 11 a.m.

Similar to Thursday’s game, the Moose struck first. With 13:53 remaining in the first period, Manitoba’s Felix Girard sent a pass to Skyler McKenzie on the doorstep. McKenzie chucked it past Grand Rapids’ goaltender Harri Sateri to give the Moose the early advantage.

Manitoba extended its lead at 12:17 when a pass from Filip Hronek intended for Christoffer Ehn was intercepted by Mason Appleton. Appleton passed the puck to Kristian Vesalainen, who capitalized from the slot to make it 2-0.

Just 42 seconds later, the Moose tacked on their third goal. JC Lipon wrapped around Sateri’s net and deposited the puck to Jansen Harkins, who was waiting on Sateri’s right to finish it off.

Despite power play opportunities for both teams, the second period remained scoreless until 1:20 was left in the frame. Emile Poirier skated the puck to Sateri and set up Alexis D’Aoust in front, who cleared it into the net for a 4-0 lead.

It wasn’t until 6:23 in the third frame that the Griffins finally found twine. While on a 3-on-1, Turner Elson sent the puck to Chris Terry near the right circle. Terry, the Griffins’ leading goal-scorer, knifed in a one-timer to make it 4-1.

Two consecutive third-period goals from the Moose put a comeback out of reach for the Griffins. At 9:57, C.J. Suess passed the puck around the boards to Appleton, who finished it off from Sateri’s left. And with 6:40 remaining, Vesalainen tapped in his second of the night to give the Moose a five-goal lead.

The final goal of the game was scored with only 1:13 left. Ehn dropped off the puck near the top left circle for Elson, who picked it up and cleared it into Manitoba’s net for the final score of 6-2.

Moose goaltender Eric Comrie tallied 38 saves for the win, while Sateri recorded 25 saves on the night.

Notes: The Griffins went 0-for-4 on the power play and 4-for-4 on the penalty kill...For the second consecutive night, Grand Rapids has broken its season-high shot total (40)...Saturday’s game was only the third time through 13 games the Griffins have allowed 30 or more shots in a game (31)...Manitoba’s 6-2 victory ended a six-game regular season win streak established by Grand Rapids over the Moose.

Three Stars: 1. MB Comrie (W, 35 saves); 2. MB Vesalainen (two goals); 3. MB D’Aoust (goal)