The Laval Rocket picked up their third road win in four nights as they defeated the Rochester Americans 4-2 at the Blue Cross Arena.
An undisciplined first period from the Rocket forced Charlie Lindgren to make several spectacular saves early in the evening as the Rocket were outshot 15-7 while killing off three penalties that included two minors picked up by Michael McCarron.
Halfway through the period Nikita Scherbak had a dangerous rush and shot that end up rebounding to Chris Terrry, and the AHL’s second-leading scorer fed Adam Cracknell for his seventh goal of the season.
Jordan Boucher added to Laval’s lead with his fourth of the season halfway through the second, picking up Kyle Baun’s rebound and shooting the puck into an open net. However, even though they couldn’t capitalize on the Rocket’s first period penalty woes, a late holding penalty against Antoine Waked allowed Rochester to bring the game within one on a power play goal from Zach Redmond.
Chris Terry restored Laval’s two-goal lead with a little more than five minutes to play with assists from Cracknell, who would go on to score an empty-net goal for his second of the night.
Scherbak picked up two assists on his 22nd birthday, giving him 14 helpers in just 14 games this season. Lindgren ended the game with 36 saves on 38 shots, picking up the game’s first star for his superlative performance.
Laval’s successful road stand raised their record to 14-14-5-2, good for fourth place in the North Division in a very tight race where the club is now tied for the eighth and final playoff spot in the conference.
Noah Juulsen continues his progression on the defensive side of the puck, playing a mistake-free game and showing off nice mobility and poise in just his 14th game as a pro. His mobility and puck-moving skills will be a welcome addition at Montreal’s training camp next season, and if he can add another 5-10 pounds of muscle this offseason look at him to get a very long look next September.
Lindgren looks like a completely different netminder than the one who couldn’t stop a beachball the first few weeks in Laval. His callup to Montreal seemed to do wonders for his confidence, and he has now moved his save percentage up to a respectable .903.
The Rocket will be back at Place Bell on January 3, hosting the Toronto Marlies for their first game of 2018.
LAV: Cracknell (22, 17), Boucher (12, 38), Terry (27, 17), Cracknell (22, 40)
RCH: Redmond (39, 10), Gill (45, 24)
LAV: Lindgren – W (36/38)
RCH: Wilcox – L (19/22)
Rocket Power Play: 0/1
Rocket Penalty Kill: 3/5
1. Charlie Lindgren – LAV / 2. Adam Cracknell – LAV / 3. Chris Terry – LAV