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Albany in playoff position with win over Sound Tigers

In a key East Division matchup with playoff implications the Albany River Rats downed Bridgeport by a score of 4-1 at the Times Union Center on Wednesday night.

With the win, Albany moves into the fourth and final playoff position in the East with a record of 31-28-3-2 and 67 points, one point ahead of the Sound Tigers.

Keith Aucoin extended his scoring streak to six games, and made it three straight multi-point contests, by recording a goal and two assists for the River Rats. Aucoin ranks fourth in the AHL in scoring with 76 points in just 50 games.

Ryan Bayda and Matt Murley each tallied a goal and an assist for Albany, which has scored 15 goals during its three-game winning streak.

Tyler Weiman backstopped the Rats to victory by making 34 saves on 35 shots.

Jeff Tambellini tallied the only goal for Bridgeport, while Eric Boguniecki recorded an assist to extend his scoring streak to seven games.


GRAND RAPIDS 4, IOWA 1
Ben Simon and Ryan Oulahen each had a shorthanded goal plus an assist as the Grand Rapids Griffins handed the Iowa Stars their third straight loss with a 4-1 decision at Van Andel Arena.

Jimmy Howard stopped 27 of 28 shots to earn his 18th win with Grand Rapids, which is 9-1-0-0 in its last 10 games at home.

Kip Miller tallied for Grand Rapids as did Jamie Tardif, who extended his scoring streak to seven games (7g, 2a).

Shane Endicott scored the lone goal for Iowa in the loss.


LOWELL 3, SPRINGFIELD 1
After falling behind 1-0 heading into the second period, the Lowell Devils tallied three unanswered goals to defeat the Springfield Falcons, 3-1, at the Tsongas Arena.

Ryan Murphy led the Devils with a goal and an assist and Jordan Parise made 23 saves on 24 shots.

With the win, Lowell remains unbeaten in regulation in its last six games, going 4-0-0-2 during that stretch. The Devils opened up a four-point lead over fifth-place Worcester in the Atlantic Division.

Grant Marshall and Petr Vrana rounded out the scoring for Lowell with a goal each.

Norm Milley scored in a losing effort for the Falcons.


PROVIDENCE 2, WORCESTER 1
Two goals in the second period proved to be enough as the Providence Bruins edged the visiting Worcester Sharks by a score of 2-1.

Ben Walter and Dennis Packard provided the goals for the P-Bruins, who snapped their two-game skid with the win.

Hannu Toivonen stopped 18 of 19 shots for Providence to even his record to 7-7-0 on the year.

Mathieu Darche scored the lone goal for Worcester in the loss.


ROCHESTER 5, WILKES-BARRE/SCRANTON 2
The Rochester Americans snapped their four-game winless skid, using a four-goal second period to defeat the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins by a score of 5-2 at the Wachovia Arena at Casey Plaza.

Marek Zagrapan and Kamil Kreps each recorded a goal and an assist and Anthony Stewart and David Brine both had two assists in the win for the Amerks.

Adam Dennis stopped 27 of 29 shots to earn his first win since Jan. 27, ending a personal seven-game losing streak.

Greg Jacina, Stefan Meyer and Janis Sprukts rounded out the scoring for Rochester, which closed to within two points of second-place Hamilton in the North Division.

Ryan Stone led the Penguins with a goal and an assist in the loss.


BINGHAMTON 7, TORONTO 4
The Binghamton Senators ended their 10-game losing streak with an offensive surge, defeating the Toronto Marlies, 7-4, at Ricoh Coliseum.

Andrew Ebbett led the way with two goals and an assist while Jeff Glass made 24 saves to earn his ninth win for the Senators, who had also lost their previous 10 road contests before Wednesday.

Cory Pecker, Jeff Heerema and defensemen Neil Komadoski and Charlie Cook all notched a goal and an assist for the B-Sens, who set a season-high with seven goals.

Alex Foster netted a pair of goals and Robbie Earl recorded a goal and an assist in a losing effort for the Marlies.


CHICAGO 4, PEORIA 3
Brett Sterling capped his third hat trick of the season with 51 seconds left in regulation, giving Chicago a 4-3 win over Peoria at Allstate Arena.

Sterling now has 49 goals on the season, and is one shy of becoming the fifth rookie in AHL history to net 50. He is also tied for second in the league with 82 points.

Darren Haydar assisted on all three of Sterling’s goals, increasing his league-leading totals to 67 assists and 99 points in 60 games.

Fred Brathwaite stopped 21 of 24 shots for the Wolves to earn his 20th win on the year.

Defenseman Andy Delmore registered the other goal for Chicago, which defeated Peoria for the seventh time in eight tries this season.

Yan Stastny and Charles Linglet each recorded a goal and two assists in a losing effort for the Rivermen.


OMAHA 3, MILWAUKEE 2 (SO)
Andrei Taratukhin played the hero for Omaha, recording a goal midway through the third period and scoring the game-winner in the 11th round of the shootout to lift the Ak-Sar-Ben Knights to a 3-2 win at Milwaukee.

Curtis McElhinney made 35 saves on 37 shots and stopped 10 of 11 players in the shootout to give Omaha its sixth consecutive win on the road.

Brandon Prust also tallied for Omaha, which remains three points behind first-place Chicago in the West Division.

Kim Staal scored both regulation goals for the Admirals, including the equalizer with 2:43 left in the third period.