Marlies Win Fourth Straight by Defeating Griffins in Grand Rapids

Deschamps, Mueller each have three point nights to lead Marlies over Griffins

Canadian Press
April 6, 2012

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. _ Nicolas Deschamps had a goal and two assists and Marcel Mueller added three assists as the Toronto Marlies defeated the Grand Rapids Griffins 4-2 in American League Hockey action Friday.

The Griffins grabbed the lead just 41 seconds into the game when Chris Minard and Jamie Johnson teamed up on a give-and-go, culminating in Minard's 21st goal of the season from the top of the crease.

Toronto answered with two goals of its own to take the lead before the intermission. Nazem Kadri slid across the slot to beat Griffins goaltender Tom McCollum top-shelf at 4:30, and Ryan Hamilton jammed home a rebound during a power play at 10:11.

Philippe Dupuis pushed the Marlies' lead to 3-1 just 51 seconds into the second period.

Tomas Tatar gathered a loose puck in the slot and quickly turned to shoot past Toronto goaltender Jussi Rynnas at the 5:39 mark to cut Grand Rapids' deficit back to one.

Toronto had a chance to add to its lead with a penalty shot 10:58 into the second period, but Jerry D'Amigo's backhand attempt bounced harmlessly off the right post.

Deschamps made it a 4-2 game by beating McCollum with a shot from the right side that snuck inside the far corner at 7:33 of the third period.

The Griffins appeared to score a goal off a deflection by Francis Pare at 12:26, but the referees ruled that the puck was played with a high stick, negating the goal.

The Griffins could get no closer, despite pulling McCollum for an extra attacker with 1:32 remaining and finishing the game with a 6-on-3 advantage in skaters thanks to two late Toronto penalties.

Rynnas earned the win behind 33 saves, and McCollum made 23 saves in defeat while logging his ninth consecutive start.

Grand Rapids (32-29-1-) will face the North Division champion Marlies (42-23-7) on Saturday at Toronto's Ricoh Coliseum.

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