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Monsters shutout Crunch to move onto the second round

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Photo Credit: John Saray/Cleveland Monsters

Syracuse Crunch (0) at Cleveland Monsters (3)

The Cleveland Monsters are headed to the second round of the 2019 Calder Cup playoffs after shutting out the Syracuse Crunch, 3-0.

In the words of Assistant General Manager Blake Geoffrin it was “Awesome! WOOO!”

Heading into tonight’s game, Head Coach John Madden decided to shake things up for the Cleveland Monsters. Kevin Stenlund and Sam Vigneault were replaced by Nikita Korostelev and Paul Bittner. While the forward lines were basically rebuilt.

“Well it wasn’t anything particular that Sam or Kevin did to take them out of the lineup. We just wanted some fresh legs.” – Head Coach John Madden

The best line move by Madden was placing Liam Foudy on the first line with Zac Dalpe and Ryan Macinnis. Foudy is definitely not a fourth liner and it showed. Playing with a fast, skilled guy like Dalpe enhanced Foudy’s game from the top down.

In fact, Foudy played a huge role in tonight’s win scoring two of the three Monsters’ goals. Alex Broadhurst was the other one who shined on the score sheet tonight with a goal sandwiched between Foudy’s goals.

Foudy put the Monsters on the board 6:36 into the first period. Mark Letestu wobbled his pass a bit. Luckily, Foudy was able to slam the puck into the net from the left side of the crease.

“The first one was a nice little back door pass from Testy. So, that felt good” – Liam Foudy

The Monsters extended their lead over the Crunch 4:31into the second period. Alex Broadhurst broke away from the pack and raced towards the net at break neck speed. Dominik Masin tried to stop him from shooting by gliding his body across Broadhurst’s path. This move caused Broadhurst to pause for a moment. When he paused Pasquale opened up the left side of the net just enough for Broadhurst to backhand the puck into the net.

With 1:58 left in the second period, Foudy extended the Monsters lead over the Crunch to 3-0. Sonny Milano decided t o pass the puck across the ice instead of taking a shot at the goal. Upon receiving the puck, Foudy swept it into the net for the goal.

“The second one, Sonny gave me a nice pass in the slot. I was lucky enough to put it in.” – Liam Foudy

Things got a little wild when the Crunch decided to pull Eddie Pasquale with nine minutes left in the game. They never put him back into the game thus forcing Brad Thiessen to experience nine solid minutes of 6-on-4 and 6-on-5 play.

“It didn’t feel like it was going to end. We kept going for the empty net. It wasn’t working out. The guys did a great job. There were a lot of great blocks there. A lot of long shifts where guys were really tired and dug deep to hang in there.” – Brad Thiessen

Despite have the man and two-man advantage for much of the third period, the Crunch were unable to post a tally on the score board. Being able to hold the Crunch to zero goals as time wound down on the third is a great testament to how the team played as a whole.

Amazing things happen when you can roll all four lines.

3 Stars

1st – Brad Thiessen (38 shots faced, 38 saves, 60:00 TOI)

2nd – Liam Foudy (2g, 0a)

3rd – Alex Broadhurst (1g, 0a)

Game Stats

Monsters Lines

MacInnis-Dalpe-Foudy
Broadhurst-Barach-Korostelev
Milano-Letestu-DeSalvo
Bittner-Scott-Sherwood

Monsters Pairings

Cross-Wade
Somerby-Collins
Carlsson-Simpson

What’s Next

The Monsters head to Toronto to take on the Marlies on Wednesday, May 1st and Friday, May 3rd. They return home on May 5th at 3pm and May 7th at 7pm.

We’ll keep you updated on if there needs to be a game five, six, or seven.