Manitoba Moose (11-6-1) @ Belleville Senators (9-9) Recap - Dec 4th
Credit: Jonathan Kozub/Manitoba Moose
The Manitoba Moose made the announcement that for the first time since Peter Stoykewych left the team in 2020, they would have a player with a "C" on his jersey when they faced off against the Belleville Senators on Saturday evening. Instead of the usual rotation of 3 assistant captains they had been using, Manitoba has indicated that going forward veteran defenseman Jimmy Oligny will now be the team captain, with forwards David Gustafsson and Cole Maier designated as assistant captains.
The 5 days off since the Moose's last game paid dividends, as speedy forward Mikey Eyssimont is set to return to the line-up from his most recent injury. His addition should help Manitoba get more scoring from the bottom 6, which should make the team very dangerous offensively since the 1st (41 pts) and the 2nd (24 pts) lines are currently playing well. Mikhail Berdin will get the start in this one, looking for his 8th win of his season.
Both Manitoba and Belleville have been hot of late, winning 4 of the last 5 games and 7 of the last 10.
The Belleville Senators' leading scorer is forward Jake Lucchini (18 pts), with Egor Sokolov (13 pts) and Pontus Aberg (11 pts) trailing. Former Stanley Cup winner Matt Murray will start in net for the Senators tonight.
The Senators have the following noteable players on their roster:
- Former NHLers Matt Murray (G) and Andrew Agozzino (LW)
- Former Manitoba Moose Logan Shaw (RW)
5 former 2nd round draft picks:
- Roby Jarventie - LW - 33rd overall in 2020
- Mads Sogaard - G - 37th overall in 2019
- Pontus Aberg - LW - 37th overall in 2012
- Dillon Heatherington - D - 50th overall in 2013
- Egor Sogolov - LW/RW - 61st overall in 2020
Moose Projected Line Up
1st Period Recap:
- After losing the draw, the Moose were able to regain possession in their own end. A nice play from Malott allowed Manitoba to gain the offensive zone, setting up a long shot from Heinola that was tipped wide by Reichel. Suess jumped on the rebound and skated around the net and as he started heading towards the blueline, he slipped a pass through the defense to a pinching Heinola. Matt Murray was able to come across and get a pad on Heinola's shot from just outside the crease.
- Kovacevic made a diving poke check to break up a Belleville rush led by Sabourin, who Reichel ended up hooking for the 1st penalty of the game.
- Berdin called on to make a save off a Shaw deflection after the Moose lost the opening face-off. Jones used his speed to get a break the other way and after a nice toe-drag move got a quality chance on Murray. The Senators had possession for the last 45 seconds, but couldn't manage a dangerous shot on Berdin.
- Belleville kept on the pressure on the following shift, with Berdin called on to make a couple saves.
- The 1st line created a turnover with a forecheck and it resulted in a chance from the low slot for Chisholm, but once again Murray was there to make the save. 3rd line came over the boards and kept the puck in the Senator's zone.
- Manitoba defenders beat with a long stretch pass and Belleville had a breakaway with Reinhardt missing the net after a backhand-forehand move.
- As the game reached the midway point of the period, the Moose held a slight edge in shots (6-4).
- Gawanke rushed end-to-end and blasted a shot that caught Murray off guard, but he was able to get a shoulder on the puck to deflect it wide.
- While battling Kovacevic along the boards, the Senator's Agozzino missed a stick lift and ended up cutting the German defenseman. Manitoba went to a 4 minute PP with just under 7 minutes to go.
- The 1st unit struggled to gain the zone for a bit before getting set up. A couple glorious chances early for Reichel (stopped from in close) and Perfetti (blasted a shot off the post). The 2nd unit came on just before they entered the second part of the PP. A turnover when trying to enter the Senators zone led to another breakaway, but Berdin was able to stretch to make the pad save after a good move by the shooter. The 1st unit came back on and started to push for the game's opening goal. Gustafsson failed to capitalize on a rebound and Heinola let a cannon go from the point. The 2nd unit couldn't create anything with the final seconds and the Moose fail to take advantage of the opportunity.
- A nice stretch pass from Samberg sent Eyssimont in on a partial breakaway, but the defender played it well forcing a shot that Murray was able to stop & cover.
- A turnover by Eyssimont at his own blueline sent Reinhardt in on another breakaway. After a quick move to the backhand, he brought the puck back to his forehand to lift the puck over Berdin's pad & into the top corner to give Belleville a 1-0 lead with 2:24 left.
- Senator's Goal: Reinhardt (3) unassisted
- Moose give up a 2 on 1 and Heinola was able to slide to break up the cross-ice pass.
- 1st line brought the puck into the Senator's end and Perfetti danced around until he drew a cross-checking penalty with only 2 seconds left in the period.
- After the opening frame, Belleville had the lead on the scoreboard (1-0), but trailed in the shot count (13-8).
- Manitoba Shot Leaders: Gawanke/Reichel/Eyssimont/Heinola (2)
2nd Period Recap:
- Manitoba opened the period on the PP and the 1st unit was able to put on some pressure. A rebound of a point shot resulted in a scramble for the rebound, but Poganski wasn't able to corral the puck. Later, Poganski slid a pass just in front of Murray, but Perfetti's shot was stopped by a pad. Belleville did a good job killing of the remainder of the man advantage.
- On a rush, Reichel was able to find Malott splitting 2 defenders, but he lost the puck when he tried to pull it to his backhand for a shot.
- A good forecheck by the 3rd line (Jones) led to a turnover to Eyssimont in the slot. He quickly let a shot go that hit Murray up high and bounced to the right of the net. Cole Maier was Johnny-on-the-spot and banged home the puck to tie the game with 14.5 minutes left in the 2nd.
- Moose Goal: Maier (6) from Eyssimont (3)
- Berdin had a slap shot from Sokolov in the slot deflect off his helmet. Shortly later, the Russian goalie was called on to stop Sokolov again when he was able to cut by Chisholm.
- Teams trade chances for a bit and Berdin had to make a couple saves on quality shots.
- A Gustafsson pass found Perfetti in the high slot and he danced around for a bit before testing Murray with a wrist shot through traffic.
- As we approached the mid-point of the period, the game was deadlocked and the Moose were leading in shots (19-14).
- Murray was tested on a good deflection of a Heinola shot by Maier.
- Samberg broke up a 3 on 2 with a pokecheck when he predicted where the pass was going to go.
- The 1st line was pinned in their own end, but didn't give up any quality looks. However, Samberg got a little overzealous with his defending and was called for interference.
- Manitoba won the opening draw and were able to ice the puck. They continued to make it hard for Belleville to gain the zone with the puck, killing off the opening minute. Eventually the Senators were able to set up and tested Berdin on a 1 timer from the slot. They kept pushing and after some quick passing, Berdin had to come across the net to take a shot off the shoulder, then pounced on te rebound. Jones and Maier were able to block the last 2 shot attempts of the PP and both teams were back at even strength.
- Things started to get a bit rough, as Samberg leveled a Belleville player and Jones got caught with his head down by a Senator.
- A Senator was called for holding with 3:12 left in the period and the Moose went back to the PP.
- The 1st unit lost the draw and had to go back to their end to start over. Perfetti carried the puck through the neutral zone before hitting Reichel in stride at the Belleville blueline. He made it look like he was going to drive through the 2 d-men before passing to Poganski on the right side of the ice. He took a step in before firing a wrist shot just inside the post to give Manitoba a 2-1 lead with 2:53 remaining.
- Moose Goal: Poganski (4) from Reichel (6) and Perfetti (9) - PowerPlay
- Samberg stepped up in the neutral zone to nail Logan Shaw with a bodycheck.
- After a turnover when Suess lost an edge coming into the offensive zone, the Senators broke out on an odd man rush. Gawanke made a nice play to step up and pressure the puck carrier, resulting in the Moose regaining possession.
- Just prior to the end of the 2nd, a Belleville player (Kelly) thought he caught Suess with his head down but he was proved wrong when Suess exploded to make the first contact, sending him to the ice. Manitoba was leading 2-1 after 2 frames and were controlling the shots as well (26-17).
- Manitoba Shot Leaders: Heinola/Eyssimont (4), Jones (3)
3rd Period Recap:
- Manitoba exploded right off the hop in the 3rd when Suess and Malott broke out on a 2 on 1. Suess showed shot all the way before flipping the puck to Malott for a 1 timer that was able to find a way by the sprawling Murray. Moose took a 3 to 1 lead just 15 seconds into the period.
- Moose Goal: Malott (5) from Suess (5) and Reichel (7)
- Eyssimont set up Jones on the doorstep, but Murray committed highway robbery when he slid across to make the save.
- Senators won the puck on a forecheck and quickly threw it out front. Berdin kicked out a pad to stop the quick shot and the Moose were able to clear their end.
- Belleville defenseman Jacob Bernard-Docker (1st round pick in 2018) made a great play to break up a play, robbing Reichel of a sure goal.
- The Senators took a hooking penalty and sent the Moose to the PP with 16:17 left in the period.
- Moose PP had difficulty setting up in this one, with the 2nd unit getting the best chance when Meireles fired a shot just over the net. The Senators successfully killed the penalty, but the Moose were finally able to control the puck and cycled along the boards on following shift.
- Egle caused a turnover on the forecheck and ended up setting Heinola up for a 1 timer that created a dangerous rebound.
- Poganski got caught for a trip and sent the Senators to the PP.
- A face-off win resulted in Berdin having to save a 1-timer from Lucchini. The Moose were able to briefly clear the puck before the Senators got set up. Good passing, but failed to find a clear shot lane. Good pressure by Gawanke & Gustafsson at the Moose blueline broke up the last attempt by Belleville to regain the zone with the man advantage.
- With 9 minutes to play, Manitoba held a 32-22 lead in shots and a 3-1 lead in goals.
- Belleville pressed and a Berdin save off a 1 timer, along with a block by Egle kept them from making the game closer.
- The Senators continued to push and Caron ended up putting the puck over the glass from the defensive end, sending Belleville right back to the PP.
- Manitoba did a great job early in the PK, not allowing the PP to enter the offensive zone for the 1st minute. A quick 2 on 1 chance was turned aside by Berdin and the Moose were able to clear the zone again. Suess got a stick on the puck before a 1 timer could be let go and the Moose were able to kill off the last few seconds.
- Belleville was starting to tilt the ice in their favour and with 5:25 left, they were finally able to break through when a point shot was deflected in front of Berdin. The puck went behind Berdin but the ref quickly waved off the goal indicating contact with a high-stick. (It definitely wasn't egregiously high, looked near crossbar height, but the closest ref seemed pretty sure of himself)
- Samberg was able to bat a pass out of the air to break up a 2 on 1. Heinola had a turnover in his end, but quickly ran over Shaw before he regained possession.
- Belleville pulled their goalie with 2.5 minutes to play. Berdin called on to make a save on a cross-ice pass. 4th line stuck on for a long period, as the Senators passed it around. Berdin made another save, this time off a 1 timer from Shaw. Sokolov sent a 1 timer just over the net and the Moose finally able to clear their end with a minute left.
- Gustafsson took a shot at the empty net from the wrong side of center and when the puck missed the net, Belleville had an offensive zone face-off with 40 seconds to play.
- After a time-out from the Senators, a big face-off was won by Gustafsson over Shaw, but Heinola wasn't able to clear the puck by the defenseman at the blueline. Gawanke was able to kill most of the remaining time by pinning the puck to the boards in the corner and final horn ended the game before the Senators managed another shot.
- Manitoba Shot Leaders: Heinola (5), Eyssimont/Jones (4), Meireles/Gawanke (3)
- Final Score: MANITOBA 3 BELLEVILLE 1
- Shots: MANITOBA 33 BELLEVILLE 28
- Coming into today's game, the Manitoba Moose have:
- Gone 10-0-0-0 when scoring first and are 7-1-0-0 when leading after the 1st period.
- Gone 10-0-0-0 when leading after the 2nd period and a perfect 4-0-0-0 when tied after the 1st.
- A power play ranked in the top-10 in the league and boasted a top-5 penalty killing unit.
- Unsurprisingly, Cole Perfetti received an invitation to Team Canada's selection camp for the World Junior Championship. He's a lock to make the squad this year and the coaching staff will look to Perfetti to help lead the way offensively.
- After giving up way too many high quality chances in the first period, Manitoba played a lot better defensively in the final 2 frames. Berdin played very well, turning aside dangerous shots and limiting the number of rebounds.
- Due to a fairly quiet night for the 1st line, I would say it was the 2nd and 3rd lines that were Manitoba's best in this one.
- Moose PP went 1 for 5 and the penalty killers didn't allow a goal against on 4 attempts.
- Some big hits in this game, with Samberg leading the way in physical play for Manitoba. Oligny, Suess, and Caron also played the body quite often.
3 Stars of the Game:
- 1st: Kristian Reichel - Manitoba (2 assists)
- 2nd: Mikhail Berdin - Manitoba (27 of 28)
- 3rd: Cole Reinhardt - Belleville (1 goal)
- Cole Perfetti took the point lead (15) with his assist on Poganski's PP goal. That goal was Poganski's 14th point of the year, bringing him into a tie with Gustafsson and Heinola.
- Up Next: Manitoba Moose@ Belleville Senators on Sunday, Dec 5th @ 2 PM CST.