Saturday, December 12, 2009

Damn you Justin Peters

For the second time in a week Justin Peters and the Albany River Rats completely shut down the AHL's highest scoring team. 36 shots by the Bears last night and 36 saves by Peters to earn the shutout.

Even with the additions of Alexander Giroux and Chris Bourque the Bears could not muster enough offense to beat the Albany goalie. Honestly though I thought the offense was average at best. The stats say 36 shots but I don't think half of those even got to the goalie. Although in the third period Peters made a few spectacular saves.

Hershey's goaltender, Jason Bacashihua, didn't do too much worse. He made two phenomenal saves early in the 2nd period to keep the Bears in the game but in the end he wasn't as good as his counterpart.

Even without a few good players the Rats still came up with enough offense to cut the Bears division lead to only 3 points. Albany got goals from Chris Terry, Nick Dodge, and an empty netter from Mike Angelidis to send the Bears back to Hershey on a sour note.

It was just the second time this season that the Bears have been shutout. And while Peters definitely played great the Bears didn't exactly help themselves. They only registered 5 shots in the first period to Albany's 15 and 2 goals. You can't give a goalie like Peters a period off and then start playing down 2 goals in the 2nd period.

And the power play...I shouldn't even get started....7 chances and not too much coming from them. Referee Frederic L'Ecuyer gave the Bears numerous opportunities but the Bears found ways to fumble the puck around in the offensive zone. But you do have to give the Rats some credit as they clogged passing lanes and took away what the Bears wanted to do.

These two don't meet again til mid January (15th) again in Albany. Maybe by then the Bears will have figured out a way to beat the Rats.

My Three Stars of the Game:
  1. Justin Peters - 36 saves and his second straight A+ against the Bears
  2. Jacob Micflikier - primary assist on all 3 goals
  3. Chris Terry - first goal of game, game winning goal as it turns out and an assist

Grading the Performance:
  • Offense | B | The first period was pathetic but they got their game going in the 2nd and 3rd but couldn't beat the Rats. Seemed to wait too long to shoot sometimes....always looking for that perfect pass. A hot goaltender will do that to a team...they think they need to make the perfect play to beat them.
  • Defense | B | The blueline units seemed to do okay. No major gaffes, not too many problems. 2 goals allowed but that's okay in most cases. Has been a consistent source of steady play this year in my opinion.
  • Goaltending | B | Not bad. Cash played well...some big saves and a couple goals allowed. Definitely not his fault they couldn't score at the other end.
  • Power Play | F | Horrible in my opinion. Not shooting 5 on 5 is a little more understandable cause you don't have time but there was WAY too much passing on the power play last night. Instead of getting pucks at the net they were looking for the perfect pass all night long.
  • Penalty Kill | A | The only goal they allowed was the empty netter at the end and that really can't be held against them.
  • Overall | B | Not a bad game honestly. I thought they had their chances and played well in their own end. Sometimes you just run into a hot goaltender. Unfortunately they have run into the same hot goaltender twice in a week.

No comments: