T-Birds Make Lone Visit to Toronto SaturdayMar 25, 2017
Toronto, ON- The Springfield Thunderbirds (27-27-9-2) will take to the ice with a bounce-back on their minds as they visit the Toronto Marlies (35-26-4-1) at the Ricoh Coliseum for a 5:00 p.m. ET puck drop.
Springfield fell victim to a major penalty midway through the third period of the club's 4-3 overtime defeat on Friday in Rochester against the Americans. Leading 3-1, the Thunderbirds were forced to go a man down for five minutes due to a boarding major on Tony Turgeon.
Rochester scored once on the ensuing power play, and then Derek Grant added a second goal in the third period to tie the score with just over two minutes to go in regulation.
The Americans went empty on a power play that stretched into the beginning of overtime, but Rochester would complete its sixth overtime win of the season on a goal by Cole Schneider in the back half of the extra period.
Springfield, despite the loss, holds an impressive 10-2-1-0 mark in its last 13 games in 3-in-3 situations.
The Marlies, meanwhile, have turned their season around in the last two months. On Jan. 21, Toronto sat near the bottom of the North Division with a 16-20-2-1 mark. Since then, the Marlies have gone 19-6-2-0 to catapult themselves into playoff positioning.
Toronto's power play has been its lethal weapon this season, ranking 4th in the league at a clip of 23.6%. Nine different Marlies have registered at least 29 points on the season, led by former Rochester American Cal O'Reilly, who hasn't skipped a beat since joining Toronto. The veteran center has six assists in six games since being acquired by Toronto at the trade deadline. O'Reilly has 39 assists in just 53 games played this season.
Former Springfield Falcon Kerby Rychel has been a menace to opposing goaltenders on the power play, scoring 11 times and adding 16 helpers with the man advantage to lead all Marlies.
Springfield will return to the Blue Cross Arena on Sunday to close the season series with Rochester for a 3:05 p.m. ET matinee. The Thunderbirds will then close their regular season with six of the final nine games at the MassMutual Center, beginning on Wednesday, March 29 against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers at 7:05 p.m. ET.
Interested in being part of the next era of AHL hockey in Springfield? Springfield Thunderbirds 2017-18 Ticket Memberships start as low as $12 per game and feature the most exclusive benefits, including a commemorative jersey and brand new Collectors Mug. For more information, fans may call the Thunderbirds ticket office at (413) 739-GOAL (4625) or visit www.SpringfieldThunderbirds.com.