AHL Morning Skate: April 28

Take a game-day spin around the AHL ice with latest news and notes from
the 2016 Calder Cup Playoffs in today’s Morning Skate.

Complete Schedule || Playoff Brackets || Today’s Scoreboard || League Leaders

Game 3 – 7:00 ET, AHL Live
(Series tied, 1-1)


Hershey and Portland move their series to Giant Center for Game 3 tonight after the teams split a pair in Maine over the weekend… The Bears’ 3-1 win in Game 2 on Saturday night evened the series… Rookies Riley Barber (1-1-2) and Jakub Vrana (2-1-3) each had a goal and an assist during the third period to break a 1-1 tie, and Justin Peters (1-0, 1.00, .969) stopped 31 of 32 shots in his first postseason appearance since 2010… Sena Acolatse (1-0-1), playing in the postseason for the first time in his five-year AHL career, netted his first playoff goal for Portland… Logan Shaw, who scored four goals in four games against Hershey during the regular season, has returned to the Pirates after skating for Florida in the Stanley Cup Playoffs — as have forward Greg McKegg and defenseman Mike Matheson… Hershey is 1-for-7 on the power play in the series; Portland is 1-for-10… Chris Bourque played his 102nd career Calder Cup Playoff game on Saturday, tying former Bears defenseman and AHL Hall of Famer John Stevens for 16th place all-time… The Pirates have lost five straight road playoff games.

Atlantic Division Semifinals – Series “A” (best-of-5)
A1-Hershey Bears vs. A4-Portland Pirates
Game 1 – Fri., Apr. 22 – PORTLAND 6, Hershey 4 
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 23 – Hershey 3, PORTLAND 1 
Game 3 – Thu., Apr. 28 – Portland at Hershey, 7:00 
Game 4 – Sat., Apr. 30 – Portland at Hershey, 7:00
*Game 5 – Sun., May 1 – Portland at Hershey, 5:00
   *if necessary… All times Eastern

Game 4 – 7:00 ET, AHL Live
(Albany leads series, 2-1)

Alexandre Grenier‘s goal 9:13 into overtime on Tuesday night extended Utica’s season, but Albany still holds a 2-1 series lead as the teams hit the ice for Game 4 tonight… It was the second career playoff OT goal for Grenier (1-0-1)… Jordan Subban (2-0-2), Utica’s leading scorer vs. Albany during the regular season with 1-5-6 in eight meetings, scored his second goal of the series in Game 3… Joe Cannata (1-0, 1.18, .950) made his first career AHL playoff start and turned aside 27 of 28 shots for the win, including all 18 shots he faced from the second period on… Mike Sislo (1-1-2), who led the AHL with 14 power-play goals during the regular season, picked up a power-play marker in Game 3… Damon Severson (0-4-4) tied for the AHL lead with his fourth assist of the postseason on Tuesday, and Reid Boucher (2-3-5) also picked up an assist and now has points in each of his last eight AHL games played (8-4-12)… Scott Wedgewood (2-1, 1.59, .925) made 28 saves in Game 3 and has now allowed two goals or fewer in 11 of his last 12 starts for Albany… The Devils are 4-for-12 on the power play in the series; the Comets are 0-for-8… Albany was 18-8-3-1 following a loss during the regular season… Tuesday’s game will be the 54th consecutive sellout at the Utica Memorial Auditorium, including all 14 of the franchise’s postseason contests.

North Division Semifinals – Series “D” (best-of-5)
N2-Albany Devils vs. N3-Utica Comets
Game 1 – Fri., Apr. 22 – ALBANY 3, Utica 2 
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 23 – ALBANY 5, Utica 1 
Game 3 – Tue., Apr. 26 – UTICA 2, Albany 1 (OT) 
Game 4 – Thu., Apr. 28 – Albany at Utica, 7:00 
*Game 5 – Sat., Apr. 30 – Utica at Albany, 5:00
   *if necessary… All times Eastern

Game 3 – 7:30 ET, AHL Live
(Toronto leads series, 2-0)

After taking both games in Bridgeport, Toronto returns home and can finish off the Sound Tigers with another victory in Game 3 at Ricoh Coliseum tonight… Since 2012, the Marlies are 13-3 in first-round playoff games, including 7-0 at home… Bridgeport was 7-10-2-0 in its first 19 road games of the season, but 11-5-2-1 in its final 19… The Marlies have scored the last seven goals of the series, blanking the Sound Tigers over the last 108:30 entering Game 3… Garret Sparks (1-0, 0.00, 1.000) answered Antoine Bibeau‘s 31-save effort in Game 1 with a 31-save shutout in Game 2… Connor Brown (3-0-3) scored twice in Sunday’s 3-0 win, and Ben Smith (1-1-2) added his first postseason goal since the 2014 Stanley Cup Western Conference Final with the Chicago Blackhawks (at Los Angeles)… Christopher Gibson (19-11-6, 2.70, .909 in the regular season), back with Bridgeport after spending the last three weeks with the parent New York Islanders, played 57 games in net for the Marlies from 2013-15.

North Division Semifinals – Series “C” (best-of-5) 
N1-Toronto Marlies vs. A5-Bridgeport Sound Tigers 
Game 1 – Sat., Apr. 23 – Toronto 4, BRIDGEPORT 1 
Game 2 – Sun., Apr. 24 – Toronto 3, BRIDGEPORT 0 
Game 3 – Thu., Apr. 28 – Bridgeport at Toronto, 7:30 
*Game 4 – Fri., Apr. 29 – Bridgeport at Toronto, 7:30 
*Game 5 – Sun., May 1 – Bridgeport at Toronto, 3:00
   *if necessary… All times Eastern

Game 3 – 10:00 ET, AHL Live
(Series tied, 1-1)


Ontario and San Jose resume their series tonight with Game 3 in the Inland Empire… The Barracuda bounced back from a Game 1 loss to defeat the Reign, 3-2, in Game 2 on Saturday night, squaring the series at 1-1… Ryan Carpenter (1-0-1), Bryan Lerg (1-0-1) and Nikolay Goldobin (1-0-1) all scored for San Jose in Game 2 and defenseman Joakim Ryan (0-3-3) assisted on all three goals… Aaron Dell (1-1, 2.01, .945) made 34 saves in Saturday’s win and has now allowed two goals or fewer in nine of 10 appearances vs. Ontario this season (4-3-2, 1.88, .944)… Dell has also assisted on two of San Jose’s four goals scored, ranking him second on the team in points… Kurtis MacDermid (2-0-2) and Jonny Brodzinski (2-0-2) have supplied all of Ontario’s offense in the series; MacDermid tallied four goals in 56 games during the regular season… Peter Budaj (1-1, 2.03, .909) has started 62 of the Reign’s 70 games since opening night, including 31 of 34 at home… Ontario won all six of the Barracuda’s visits to Citizens Business Bank Arena in 2015-16… Ontario was 22-8-3-1 on home ice during the regular season; San Jose was a .500 club on the road (13-13-6-2).

Pacific Division Semifinals – Series “G” (best-of-5) 
P1-Ontario Reign vs. P4-San Jose Barracuda
Game 1 – Fri., Apr. 22 – Ontario 2, SAN JOSE 1
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 23 – SAN JOSE 3, Ontario 2
Game 3 – Thu., Apr. 28 – San Jose at Ontario, 10:00
Game 4 – Fri., Apr. 29 – San Jose at Ontario, 10:00
*Game 5 – Sun., May 1 – San Jose at Ontario, 6:00
   *if necessary… All times Eastern

Game 3 – 10:05 ET, AHL Live
(Series tied, 1-1)


Texas got goals from five different players and rolled past San Diego, 5-1, to even the teams’ Pacific Division semifinal series at 1-1 heading to southern California for Game 3 tonight… Justin Dowling (2-1-3), Esa Lindell (1-2-3) and Curtis McKenzie (1-1-2) all had a goal and an assist each in Game 2 on Saturday… Jack Campbell (1-0, 1.00, .962) made 25 saves for the win in his first appearance of the series, and the 2010 first-round draft pick by Dallas is now 5-1-2 in eight games since returning from Idaho (ECHL) on Feb. 24… Nick Ritchie (2-0-2), who netted the winning goal for the Gulls in Game 1, scored their only marker of Game 2… San Diego, which owned the third-best power play in the AHL in the regular season (20.8 percent), is 0-for-7 in the series thus far… The Gulls were 20-10-3-1 at home in 2015-16, but lost all three of Texas’s visits to the Valley View Casino Center.

Pacific Division Semifinals – Series “H” (best-of-5) 
P2-San Diego Gulls vs. P3-Texas Stars 
Game 1 – Thu., Apr. 21 – San Diego 3, TEXAS 1
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 23 – TEXAS 5, San Diego 1
Game 3 – Thu., Apr. 28 – Texas at San Diego, 10:05
Game 4 – Fri., Apr. 29 – Texas at San Diego, 10:05
*Game 5 – Mon., May 2 – Texas at San Diego, 10:05
   *if necessary… All times Eastern

Tuesday’s Recaps
#MILvsGR: Griffins finish off Admirals in Game 3
#ALBvsUTI: Comets stay alive with OT win
Working Overtime
There have been 4 overtime games played in the 2016 Calder Cup Playoffs so far:

Apr. 26 – UTICA 2, Albany 1 (Alexandre Grenier, 9:13)
Apr. 23 – W-B/Scranton 5, PROVIDENCE 4 (Jake Guentzel, 33:52)
Apr. 21 – W-B/SCRANTON 4, Providence 3 (Daniel Sprong, 5:13)
Apr. 20 – W-B/SCRANTON 3, Providence 2 (Carter Rowney, 1:09)

Alumni Watch
In Stanley Cup Playoff action last night, two-time AHL All-Star Pekka Rinne made 36 saves as Nashville defeated Anaheim, 2-1, in Game 7 at Honda Center… Rinne’s win to eliminate Bruce Boudreau’s Ducks came 10 years after Boudreau’s Hershey Bears defeated Rinne and the Milwaukee Admirals in the 2006 Calder Cup Finals… 2014-15 Second Team AHL All-Star Shane Prince scored twice to lift the New York Islanders to a 5-3 win over Tampa Bay in Game 1 of their second-round series… AHL alumni Ben Bishop, Braden Holtby and Jonathan Quick were named the three finalists for the Vezina Trophy as the NHL’s outstanding goaltender for 2015-16; Holtby (2011) and Bishop (2012) are former AHL All-Stars.

AHL Live
Don’t miss a second on the road to the 2016 Calder Cup championship. AHL Live brings AHL action to your desktop, laptop, smartphone or tablet all season long with live video webcasts and free highlights of every AHL game… Visit ahllive.com for details.