Barons regain 3rd place with win over
Record crowd on hand
1/4/04 - by Craig Haueter
The Cleveland Barons
jumped over St. Johns into third place in the North Division with a
spirited 5-1 victory over their division rival before a franchise record crowd
of 7,876 at Gund Arena Saturday night. Dimitri Patzold made 35 saves on the
night for the Barons to pick up his eighth win of the season.
defensive first period saw both teams manage just 15 shots on goal combined.
Lynn Loyns was able to feed Jon DiSalvatore in the slot midway through the
period and DiSalvatore fired a low hard shot that trickled through the pads of
Maple Leafs goalie Mikael Tellqvist for a 1-0 Barons lead. Coming off a very
disappointing performance the night prior, Patzold was sharp for the Barons,
turning away several point blank shots.
Play turned more wide-open in
the second period as Cleveland would outshoot St. Johns 15-13. Despite
the increased offensive opportunities, the only goal of the period belonged to
the Barons. Forward Marcel Goc picked up a head of steam through the neutral
zone and fired a hard blast between the legs of Tellqvist for his third goal of
the season and put the Barons on front 2-0. The turning point in the game may
well have been four minutes into the period when Cleveland found itself on the
short end of a 5-on-3 advantage. With the Leafs looking to tie it up, the
record crowd got behind their team and helped support the Barons as they killed
both penalties successfully.
The Maple Leafs would come out hustling in
the third period and their pressure was rewarded with a power-play goal from
leading scorer Kyle Wellwood to cut the Barons lead to 2-1. However, from that
point on, Patzold did his part to maintain the lead, turning away a total of
twelve shots in the period. Rookie forward Grant Stevenson picked up a loose
puck and scored his third goal of the season to push the lead for Cleveland out
to 3-1. Less than two minutes to play, Miroslav Zalesak added a power play goal
on the heels of Carlo Colaiacovos vicious boarding penalty against Jon
DiSalvatore of the Barons. Grant Stevenson would finish the scoring on a nifty
short-handed goal off a faceoff with just 37 seconds remaining for his second
goal of the night. The Barons return to action Sunday night in Syracuse as they
embark on a 6-game, 14-day road trip.
Defenseman Matt Carkner, who leads the Barons in
plus/minus at 10, missed the game with a hand injury. Defenseman Jim Fahey was
recalled by San Jose and the Barons called up defenseman Dan Watson from
Columbus of the UHL. Due to the leg injury to goalie Seamus Kotyk Friday night,
goalie Bujar Amidovski was signed from Dayton of the ECHL. Amidovski was
previously signed as a backup in Grand Rapids earlier in the season.
Forward Miroslav Zalesak continues to make a case for promotion to the NHL as
he has now scored in 12 of his last 13 games.
The Barons clearly enjoy
getting out in front and staying there as they now are 13-3-1-2 when they score
the first goal. When Cleveland has a 2-0 lead, it is 9-0-1.
wont show up in any boxscore, Jon DiSalvatore gets the hustle award for
Saturday night for his effort catching Josh Holden on mini-breakaway in the
second period and poking the puck away from Holden to break up the
3rd Star Grant Stevenson (CLE),
2nd Star Marcel Goc (CLE), 1 goal
1st Star Dimitri
Patzold (CLE), 35 saves
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