ROCHESTER 5, SYRACUSE 2
Defenseman Keaton Ellerby, a former first-round draft pick who entered the night without a goal in his first 16 games this season, netted a hat trick to lead Rochester to a 5-2 win over visiting Syracuse at the Blue Cross Arena.
Ellerby, drafted 10th overall by the Florida Panthers in 2007, scored once in each period and registered a pair of power play markers in that contest. In one night, the second-year pro matched the three goals he scored in 75 games as a rookie for Rochester last season.
Shawn Matthias also put up three points (1-2-3) for the Americans, and Andrew Sweetland rounded out the offense. David Brine and defenseman Clay Wilson each posted two assists on the night.
Amerks rookie goaltender Alexander Salak earned the victory with 16 saves, helping his club move to 14-2-1-0 (29 points) for the campaign.
Dan Fritsche and Trevor Frischmon scored for the Crunch, who are winless in four straight games (0-3-0-1).
TORONTO 7, LAKE ERIE 1
Rookie Christian Hanson tallied three goals and an assist and fired a game-high seven shots on net as Toronto rolled to a 7-1 road win over Lake Erie before 8,116 fans at Quicken Loans Arena.
Hanson, who leads the Marlies with eight goals and 16 points in 16 games this season, completed the troika by scoring at even strength, on the power play, and shorthanded.
Alex Foster tallied a pair of goals in the victory, while Viktor Stalberg (1-1-2) and Ryan Hamilton also found the back of the net.
Jiri Tlusty and rookie Tyler Bozak each chipped in three assists for the Marlies, who entered the night having managed just three goals during a four-game winless skid (0-3-0-1).
Toronto goaltender James Reimer earned the win with 21 saves on 22 shots in net.
Marty Sertich scored the lone goal for the Monsters, who fell to 1-5-0-1 in their last seven contests.
BRIDGEPORT 3, ABBOTSFORD 1
Bridgeport goaltender Nathan Lawson made a season-high 47 saves on 48 shots to lead the Sound Tigers to a 3-1 road win over Abbotsford on Friday at the Entertainment & Sports Centre.
Lawson, an AHL All-Rookie Team member last season, stopped 41 shots over the first two periods alone and improved to 5-4-0 on the campaign.
Trevor Smith posted a goal and an assist for the Sound Tigers, who also received markers from Greg Mauldin and defenseman Mark Flood, who scored his first of the year.
Sean Bentivoglio chipped in two helpers in the victory, which extended Bridgeport’s point streak to four games (3-0-0-1).
Defenseman Matt Pelech registered the Heat’s lone goal with one second to play in the opening period. Abbotsford will seek revenge when it hosts the Sound Tigers in a rematch on Saturday night.
PROVIDENCE 5, SPRINGFIELD 2
Providence tallied three unanswered goals in the third period to skate off with a 5-2 win over visiting Springfield before 8,424 fans at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center.
Kirk MacDonald snapped a 2-2 tie for the Bruins at 5:25 of the third frame, Guillaume Lefebvre added insurance at the 12:45 mark, and Jamie Arniel sealed the win with an empty-netter at 19:01.
Arniel and Jeff LoVecchio each finished with a goal and an assist for Providence, and defenseman Andy Wozniewski also found the back of the net.
Providence goaltender Dany Sabourin made 19 saves in the winning effort, as the Bruins improved to 3-1-0-0 in their last four contests.
Ryan O’Marra and Colton Fretter netted goals for the Falcons, whose five-game points streak (4-0-1-0) came to an end.
GRAND RAPIDS 4, TEXAS 1
A three-goal second period vaulted Grand Rapids to a 4-1 win over visiting Texas before 7,087 fans at Van Andel Arena.
Jan Mursak, Patrick Rissmiller (1-1-2), and Kris Newbury tallied second-period goals for the Griffins, and defenseman Jakub Kindl added a marker in the third frame.
Defenseman Doug Janik and rookie Tomas Tatar each posted a pair of assists for Grand Rapids, and goaltender Daniel Larsson earned the victory with 24 saves on 25 shots on net.
The Griffins improved to 10-1-0-0 in their last 11 games and 9-1-0-0 on home ice this season.
Rookie Colton Sceviour netted a power play goal for the Stars, whose 12-game points streak (9-0-2-1) ended. Texas lost in regulation for the first time since a 4-0 setback to Lake Erie on Oct. 20.
LOWELL 2, NORFOLK 1
Lowell scored twice in the first period, and goaltender Mike McKenna made it stand up for a 2-1 win over visiting Norfolk at Tsongas Arena on Friday.
Vladimir Zharkov gave the Devils a 1-0 lead just 24 seconds after the opening face-off, and Michael Swift made it a 2-0 game at the 12:12 mark of the first period.
It remained 2-0 until Norfolk’s Brandon Bochenski tallied his league-leading 12th goal of the season 12:33 into the second period, but the Admirals were unable to get the equalizer.
McKenna (7-3-0) finished with 29 saves on 30 shots, helping the Devils move to 6-1-0-0 in their last seven games.
PORTLAND 3, WORCESTER 1
Portland scored a power play goal in each period to beat reeling Worcester by a 3-1 count on Friday at the Cumberland County Civic Center.
Reigning AHL Rookie of the Year Nathan Gerbe posted a goal and an assist for the Pirates, who also received tallies from Jeff Cowan and Philip Gogulla.
Rookie Tyler Ennis registered a pair of assists in the victory, giving him five points (1-4-5) in his last two outings. Goaltender Jean-Philippe Lamoureux earned the win with 32 saves on 33 shots on net.
Torrey Mitchell tallied a power play goal for the Sharks, whose franchise-record losing skid extended to seven games.
HERSHEY 5, BINGHAMTON 2
Alexandre Giroux registered a goal and two assists to lead Hershey to a 5-2 road win over Binghamton before 4,710 fans at the Broome County Arena.
Giroux, who played for the Senators from 2002-04, has now racked up eight points (5-3-8) in three visits to Binghamton this season, all of which have resulted in Bears victories.
Andrew Gordon posted a goal and a helper for Hershey, which also received markers from Boyd Kane and Trevor Bruess, who scored his first as a professional.
Keith Aucoin chipped in two assists, and Bears goaltender Jason Bacashihua earned the victory with 38 saves on 40 shots. Hershey extended its winning streak to five games and moved to 9-1-0-0 in its last 10 outings.
Ryan Keller and Martin St. Pierre netted goals for the Senators in the losing effort.
MANCHESTER 2, ALBANY 1
Bud Holloway’s goal at 11:24 of the third period broke a 1-1 tie and sent Manchester on its way to a 2-1 win over visiting Albany on Friday at the Verizon Wireless Arena.
Holloway, who had not scored since Oct. 24 vs. Providence, was assisted on the play by Oscar Moller and defenseman Joe Piskula.
The Monarchs took a 1-0 lead when Gabe Gauthier netted a power play goal at 8:13 of the second period, but the River Rats’ Steven Goertzen tied it just 2:14 into the third frame.
Manchester goaltender Jonathan Bernier earned the victory with 33 saves on 34 shots, improving to 8-4-2 on the campaign.
The Monarchs (12-4-1-2, 27 points) maintained their two-point lead on Lowell for first place in the Atlantic Division.
PEORIA 7, SAN ANTONIO 2
Peoria built a 5-0 lead after the opening period and cruised to a 7-2 road win over San Antonio at the AT&T Center on Friday.
Adam Cracknell led the way with two goals and an assist for the Rivermen, Julian Talbot and defenseman Brendan Bell each posted a goal and a helper, while Nicholas Drazenovic, Chris Porter, and Mitch Love also found the back of the net.
The Rivermen are now 2-2-0-0 in their last four games; they have outscored opponents 12-6 in the two victories and been outscored 7-0 in the two losses.
Peoria goaltender Ben Bishop earned the victory on Friday with 37 saves on 39 shots.
Kevin Porter and Chad Kolarik tallied third-period goals for the Rampage, who are winless in 10 straight games (0-8-1-1) and haven’t won a game since a 7-2 triumph over Grand Rapids on Oct. 18.
ROCKFORD 1, CHICAGO 0
Bracken Kearns tallied the game’s lone goal at 7:31 of the third period as Rockford edged visiting Chicago by a 1-0 count at the MetroCentre on Friday.
Kearns’ third goal of the season – and second game-winner – was assisted by Danny Bois and rookie defenseman Brian Connelly, who now has a point in three straight games (1-3-4).
The IceHogs poured 43 shots on Wolves goaltender Drew MacIntyre, including 23 in the second period alone. MacIntyre took the loss despite making 42 saves on the night.
Rockford goaltender Joe Fallon earned the shutout with 26 saves in net.
Chicago’s three-game winning streak came to an end.
MANITOBA 5, HAMILTON 3
Mario Bliznak and rookie Sergei Shirokov each registered a goal and an assist as Manitoba skated off with a 5-3 win over visiting Hamilton on Friday before 8,415 fans at the MTS Centre.
Erik Christensen also scored in his first game of a conditioning stint with the Moose, who brought a 3-1 lead into the late stages of the third period.
Captain Mike Keane added an empty-net tally at the 18:29, seemingly clinching the victory for Manitoba. But the Bulldogs climbed back into it on goals by Andrew Conboy at 18:41 and defenseman P.K. Subban at 19:19.
Hamilton could not find the equalizer, however, and Keane tallied another empty-net marker to finally seal the victory at 19:39.
Manitoba goaltender Cory Schneider earned the victory with 35 saves in net, helping the Moose to their season-high third straight win.
MILWAUKEE 3, HOUSTON 2
Milwaukee built a 3-0 lead early in the third period and held on for a 3-2 road win over Houston at the Toyota Center.
Robert Dietrich and Mike Santorelli netted first-period goals for the Admirals. After a scoreless middle frame, Ryan Jones, who assisted on Santorelli’s marker, extended the lead to 3-0 just 1:05 into the third frame.
The Aeros attempted a comeback, as Petr Kalus scored unassisted at 7:22 and Chad Rau followed with a power play tally at 15:17. But Houston could not pull even and fell to 1-2-0-0 on its four-game homestand.
Milwaukee goaltender Chet Pickard earned the win with 22 saves on 24 shots, helping the Admirals snap a brief two-game winless skid (0-1-1-0).
After they both enjoy Saturday night off, the teams will square off for a rematch in Houston on Sunday afternoon.