SYRACUSE, N.Y. (SYRACUSE CRUNCH) –
The Syracuse Crunch claimed the North Division title with a 4-3 victory over the Rochester Americans tonight at the War Memorial Arena.
The Crunch put up three third-period goals to advance to 47-21-4-3 on the season and split the 12-game season series against the Amerks, 6-4-1-1.
Eddie Pasquale earned the win with 23 saves in net for the Crunch. Scott Wedgewood turned aside 28-of-31 shots between the pipes for the Amerks. Syracuse was unable to convert on two power power play opportunities, while Rochester went 1-for-2.
The Amerks were first on the board with a power-play goal 9:39 into the opening frame when Victor Olofsson fired a wrister from the right circle with the help of Danny O’Regan.
The Crunch knotted the game less than a minute later. Wedgewood made the stop when Mitchell Stephens tipped Dominik Masin’s shot down low, but he left the rebound loose for Taylor Raddysh to chip into an open net.
Syracuse took the lead 2:30 into the third period. Stephens stole the puck along the goal line and snuck it in five-hole. Assists went to Raddysh and Hubert Labrie.
Just 17 seconds later, Rochester tied the game at 2-2. Olofsson potted his second of the night from a sharp angle along the goal line. Rasmus Asplund and Kurt Gosselin tallied points on the goal.
The Crunch built a two-goal lead with back-to-back goals 1:27 apart. At the 16:39 mark, Carter Verhaeghe scored from the high slot off a feed from Alex Barre-Boulet. Gabriel Dumont then added an empty-netter with the help of Cameron Gaunce.
Rochester tried to start a late comeback when the team pulled back within one with 17 seconds remaining in the game. Pasquale caught a piece of Dalton Smith’s shot from the slot, but it found the back of the net. Syracuse stifled the effort to take the win.
The Crunch close out the regular season in Utica tomorrow at 5 p.m.