Griffins push Marlies to the brink


Game 4

The Grand Rapdis Griffins closed in on a trip to the Western Conference Finals with a 4-1 win over the visiting Toronto Marlies on Friday night at Van Andel Arena.

With a 3-1 series lead, the Griffins can close out the defending conference champions with another home-ice win in Game 5 on Saturday night.

Toronto scored first for the first time in the series as Carter Ashton‘s bad-angle shot trickled past Petr Mrazek at the 18:05 mark of the opening period.

Tomas Jurco tied things at 1-1 with 5:15 gone in the second period, burying a shot off a pass from Luke Glendening during a Griffins power play.

Landon Ferraro put Grand Rapids on top with 9:47 left in regulation when his centering attempt from behind the net hit Marlies goaltender Drew MacIntyre and caromed in.

As Toronto pressed for the equalizer, Jeff Hoggan and Jan Mursak added empty-net goals 17 seconds apart to provide the final margin.

Mrazek finished with 17 saves as the Griffins outshot the Marlies, 36-18. MacIntyre stopped 32 of 34 shots in the loss.

Western Conference Semifinal – Series “L” (best-of-7)
2-Toronto Marlies vs. 3-Grand Rapids Griffins

Game 1 – Fri., May 10 – Grand Rapids 7, TORONTO 0
Game 2 – Sat., May 11 – TORONTO 4, Grand Rapids 2
Game 3 – Wed., May 15 – GRAND RAPIDS 5, Toronto 4
Game 4 – Fri., May 17 – GRAND RAPIDS 4, Toronto 1
Game 5 – Sat., May 18 – Toronto at Grand Rapids, 7:00
*Game 6 – Tue., May 21 – Grand Rapids at Toronto, 7:00
*Game 7 – Wed., May 22 – Grand Rapids at Toronto, 7:00