Toronto Marlies open round two with a bang versus Chicago
TORONTO – On Friday night the Toronto Marlies and the Chicago Wolves kicked off their round two Calder Cup matchup in Chicago. Toronto, coming off a long layoff after their 3-0 sweep over the Milwaukee Admirals, were looking to make sure that the Wolves bark was louder than their bite. Friday was also the first post-season game for both Spencer Abbott and Peter Holland. Abbott had been sidelined with an upper body injury since the beginning of April, while Holland missed the last few games of the regular season with a minor injury.
In the first, it was the Marlies who would strike first. Just under 10 minutes played in the first, Toronto would head to the man advantage with Brent Regner in the box for holding. At 10:54 of the opening frame, the Marlies quickly solved Jake Allen. Spencer Abbott created a tic-tac-toe passing play which led to Josh Leivo and Peter Holland working the puck to an open Trevor Smith crashing the net who beat Allen for his 1st of the post season, 1-0 Toronto. Still in the first, with less than five to go, it was the duo of Abbott and Holland contributing once more. On the two-man advantage, Peter Holland lifted a backhand shot in tight over Allen making it a 2-0 Toronto lead which they would take into the dressing room. The Marlies had a lot of great chances in the first period and led the shots 14-13 after one.
In the second period, Josh Leivo decided it was time to show off his speed. 5:02 into the frame, after breaking into the offensive zone and missing his shot, Leivo collected the puck and skated with possession all the way back to centre ice. Leivo then re-entered the zone with Greg McKegg on his left side who beat Allen with a laser of a wrist shot for his 2nd of the post-season extending the Marlies lead to 3-0. Five minutes later though, the Wolves would get one back. Former Maple Leaf and Marlie Christian Hanson was left all alone on the door step as the puck ricocheted off the boards and right onto his stick and easily beat a surprised Drew MacIntyre to bring the Wolves back into the game, 3-1. Still in the second, after Spencer Abbott chased down a loose puck into the centre ice area, the Marlies were caught on a bad change where Michael Davies took advantage. Davies broke in behind Andrew MacWilliam and Stuart Percy and beat MacIntyre with nice shot, 3-2 Toronto after 40 minutes of play.
In the third the Marlies once again found the scoreboard. Three minutes into the final frame, Peter Holland and Spencer Abbott found Carter Ashton alone on the wing who powered his way to the net. Ashton actually fanned on the shot but confused Jake Allen enough that he put the puck into his own net. Ashton would get credit for his 1st of the post season, 4-2 Toronto. With less than five to go in the third, a Jerry D’Amigo stretch pass to Sam Carrick went wide, but with nobody around Carrick, he skated into the offensive zone, retrieved the puck off a ricochet off the boards and walked around Jake Allen for his 4th of the post-season sealing the victory for the Marlies. 5-2 the final score.
- Powerplay was 2/5 while the PK was 3/3
- Spencer Abbott and Peter Holland looked good in their returns. Holland recorded three points (1G 2A) while Abbott recorded two assists
- Drew MacIntyre stopped 37 of 39 shots he faced. He was the game’s 3rd star
- The Marlies kept the Wolves best player in Dimitri Jaskin off the board. He was a -1 with 5 shots on goal