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Marlies Change Attitude, Trump Americans in Third

Marlies Change Attitude, Trump Americans in Third

TORONTO – There’s something to be said about a home opener. For the fans, many of the regulars will find themselves meeting and talking to those faces that they haven’t seen since the spring; maybe it’s time to meet the new seatmate next to you. For the Marlies and Americans, it meant the second of a home-and-home series. The Americans doubled up on the Marlies, thanks to solid goaltending from Saturday’s starter Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen just one night prior.

This Rochester team knows how to work the puck, and the Marlies were caught staring at it when the Americans scored their first goal of the game. Great passing work by Rochester led to Filip Cederqvist feeding Lukas Rousek in the slot, leaving no choice for starter Keith Petruzzelli, who was left somewhere on Younge Street to dry.

With the first period completed, it was hard not to think about the previous game, where the Marlies gave up six power plays, three of those with goals. The Marlies carried their sticks carelessly and ran around acting like they were the only ones on the ice. For the Americans, who were already leading the shot clock, the last 40 minutes were about continuing to hammer quality shots and bating the Marlies.

The second period started to show how close these two teams really were. Quick moving pucks by both, and the Marlies found their feet, which equated to solid chances for the baby buds in the o-zone. While both made questionable plays in the opening 40 minutes of the game, one thing was clear; this was to be decided in the final 20.

And that quick feet from Toronto equated to a goal at their first chance in the third. When Alex Steeves drew a penalty for an awkward trip, it was a power play in the third that tied the game. Set up on a silver platter, Semyon Der-Arguchintsev found Nick Robertson, who buried the puck as quick as an Air Canada jet. The goal sparked momentum, and it couldn’t be long before they notched their second.

That second goal? Look to Steeves for that. The Marlies, who were on the power play for their second goal, showed Rochester just how critical these power plays can be, and a 50 percent success rate to that point gave that an exclamation point.

A final goal from Adam Gaudette made it a 3-1 final on a night where the Marlies gave up critical power plays during the game, which led to potentially dangerous plays. The Amerks simply lost their footing, and the Marlies spoiled their once-perfect 1-0 record.

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    Zack Power covers the Toronto Marlies for Field Pass Hockey. Follow and interact with him on Twitter @FPHMarlies.

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