GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Grand Rapids Griffins extended their season-high point streak to six games (4-0-0-2) as they fell 4-3 in a shootout against the Belleville Senators on Saturday night at Van Andel Arena.
The Senators (24-13-3-1) scored twice in a 3:41 span in the final frame to even the scoreline at 3-3. Michael Rasmussen and Matt Puempel both rattled the left post on breakaway chances during the overtime period. The Griffins (18-19-2-4) have collected points in every contest during their season-high eight-game homestand and own a record of 3-0-0-2. Dominik Shine tallied a goal in consecutive contests and has three points in the last two games (2-1—3).
Grand Rapids will continue its homestretch on Wednesday when the Iowa Wild visit the Van at 7 p.m. Before that however, Griffins players, coaches and staff will be making their way to Rosa Parks Circle for the annual Great Skate Winterfest, which is currently underway and lasts until 10 p.m. Sunday.
It was an uneventful opening period that saw the Senators notch only three shots, which tied for the fewest attempts allowed by the Griffins this season.
Shine got things rolling 3:20 into the middle period when he netted his fourth tally of the season. Gustav Lindstrom smashed a shot from the right boards that was saved and the rebound by Chase Pearson was blocked once more. However, the puck slid to Shine and he rifled a one-timer that slipped past the left shoulder of Joey Daccord.
The Senators tied the game with 13:15 remaining in the second when Parker Kelly hammered a shorthanded attempt over the catching glove of Kevin Poulin, who made his third appearance in net for the Griffins. Frank Corrado from his own zone found Kelly at center ice. Kelly weaved his way over the Griffins’ blue line and rifled a shot from the top of the right circle that sailed into the upper netting of the goal.
Grand Rapids regained its lead on a power-play goal at 16:58 in the period when Dennis Cholowski tallied his second of the year. From near the goal line along the right boards, Taro Hirose sent the puck back to the blue line and Cholowski’s one-timer sped into the right corner with the help of Rasmussen blocking the view of the netminder.
The Griffins made it a 3-1 contest with 14:14 remaining in regulation when Evgeny Svechnikov scored his sixth of the campaign. Hirose backhanded a pass down the right boards and behind the net where Svechnikov gained control of the puck. Svechnikov skated past the left goalpost and around the crease and snuck a shot past the left leg of Daccord.
The Senators’ comeback began at the 10:17 mark when Morgan Klimchuk beat the glove of Poulin for his eighth goal of the season. Erik Brannstrom fired a shot from the top of the left circle that was deflected by Klimchuk in front of the net and into the right corner.
With 6:02 remaining the Senators tied the game 3-3 when Michael Carcone netted his ninth tally of the season. Logan Brown skated through the neutral zone and into Griffins territory down the left wing and sent a puck to the right circle toward Carcone. Carcone moved to the top of the crease and his shot slipped past the right skate of Poulin.
The game moved into overtime and Grand Rapids had two great opportunities to win the contest. With around three minutes to play Rasmussen slipped out all alone but his wrist shot from the middle of the zone smashed the left post. On an almost identical play with seconds remaining, Puempel skated out on a breakaway and his shot from between the circles rattled the same goalpost.
Chris Terry scored the lone goal for the Griffins while Vitaly Abramov and Brown scored in rounds two and three to give the Senators a 4-3 victory.
Notes: The Griffins outshot Belleville 46-31, marking a season high in shots…Grand Rapids posted 23 shots in the second frame, which was the most attempts in a period since the third frame against the Iowa Wild on April 10, 2019…Poulin made 27 saves…The Griffins penalty kill went 2-for-2 while the power play went 1-for-5.
Three Stars: 1. BEL Carcone (goal); 2. GR Svechnikov (goal); 3. BEL Daccord (W, 43 saves)
[Post content courtesy of the Grand Rapids Griffins]