Hamilton scored a pair of power-play goals, including the game-winner
midway through the first period, to help the defending Western
Conference champion Toronto Marlies defeat
the Rochester Americans 3-1 Saturday night at Ricoh Coliseum. With the
loss, the Amerks fall to 1-1-0-0 on the season as they bring opening
weekend to a close.
The Amerks and Marlies renewed a rivalry that last season saw the teams
meet 13 total times, with 12 of the games being decided by one goal. For
Rochester, Saturday's game was its first trip to Toronto since the
teams' first round playoff series last spring.
Marcus Foligno scored for the second time in as many days to bring
Rochester within a goal, but Hamilton's second marker of the night at
7:30 of the final frame proved to be the difference in the contest that
saw a combined four power-play goals from both teams.
Reigning team MVP David Leggio made his second straight start between
the pipes, stopping 34 of 37 shots he faced, including 15 of 16 in the
third period. Toronto's Ben Scrivens garnered his first win of the new
campaign with a 20-save effort.
Gardiner gave Toronto a 1-0 lead 5:17 into the opening period with a
wrist shot from high slot after he snuck in from the blueline during
a Marlies power-play. Nazem Kadri and former Amerk
Mike Kostka picked up the assists on the goal.
Later in the
first, Toronto struck again with the man-advantage. While working the
puck quickly around the offensive zone, Joe Colborne found Hamilton on
the weak side post for a tap-in goal to make it
a 2-0 game heading into the first intermission. Mike Zigomanis also
assisted on the goal.
Rochester cut its
deficit in half just under six minutes into the second period during a
power-play of its own. Foligno took a pass from Cody Hodgson and fired a
wrist shot from the slot that made its way
through traffic and into the back of the net for his second goal of the
season. Hodgson and T.J. Brennan, who also assisted on the goal, each
picked up their second helper in as many games.
The run of
power-play goals continued into the third period. Just 37 seconds after
Toronto had a goal disallowed, Hamilton scored his second of the game to
make it 3-1. Kostka found the Marlies captain alone
on the goal line, and while skating backwards along the line, Hamilton
collected the pass and stuffed it inside the post to put his team up by a
return home on Tuesday, Oct. 16 as the Binghamton Senators make their
way to The Blue Cross Arena. The 7:05 p.m. matchup will be the first of
eight get-togethers between the intrastate
rivals this season.