Dec 29, 2018

SYRACUSE, N.Y. - The Springfield Thunderbirds (15-11-3-3) tied the score three separate times, but never could get the tie-breaking goal,  as they fell to the Syracuse Crunch (20-8-2-0) by a final score of 4-3 on Saturday night at The Oncenter War Memorial Arena.


The Crunch got on the board first, tallying the game’s first goal just 1:32 into the game. After Alexander Volkov launched a shot off Sam Montembeault’s left pad, the rebound kicked directly to Ross Colton who shot the loose puck into the yawning net from short range, giving Syracuse a 1-0 lead early in the first period. Alex Barre-Boulet picked up the secondary assist.


5:36 later, Bobby Farnham took advantage of a misplay in the Syracuse defensive zone by and beat Syracuse goaltender Eddie Pasquale on a backhand move on the short side, tying the score at 1-1.


The Crunch retook the lead at the 13:20 mark when Andy Andreoff tapped home a rebound from a similar spot to Colton’s goal earlier in the period. Dennis Yan’s initial try hit off Jacob MacDonald and Montembeault in front of the net before bouncing to Andreoff’s stick. Dominik Masin picked up the additional helper on the play, which took Syracuse into the intermission with a 2-1 edge.


After a tightly-checked second period with nearly 19 minutes of nothing on the score sheet, the T-Birds tied the score up at two goals apiece the 18:52 mark when Matt Mangene took the puck up the far wall by himself, cut to the net, and beat Pasquale on a second chance, double move to complete the sensational individual effort.


The goal came just as 4-on-4 time expired and turned into a 10-second Springfield power play, making the marker a power play strike.


With the score 2-2 into the third, Syracuse vauled back to the lead when Colton scored his second goal of the game, batting the puck out of mid-air to beat Montembeault at 3:04 of the third.


The T-Birds answered right back three minutes later at the 6:16 mark when captain Paul Thompson picked up a loose puck and jabbed it home for his 14th goal of the season after Jonathan Ang was tripped up right in front of the net. The 3-3 tie carried into overtime.


Springfield could not find the overtime winner on this night, however, and Syracuse potted the game-winner at 2:22 of overtime when Andreoff wristed home his second goal of the game off a centering feed by Cory Conacher.


Montembeault finished with 21 saves in the losing effort. Springfield earned a point for the first time in four games to bring their season point total to 36.


The Thunderbirds close the three-game weekend with their first trip to Hartford for a 3:00 p.m. matinee on Sunday against the Wolf Pack.


Springfield Thunderbirds fans are encouraged to visit to learn more about 2018-19 Thunderbirds Season Ticket Memberships. Packages include a wide range of benefits, including the lowest prices for the 2019 Lexus AHL All-Star Classic presented by MGM Springfield. For more information or to order now, call (413) 739-GOAL (4625) or visit

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