It was a tough weekend for the Belleville Senators as they faced off against the Toronto Marlies and Syracuse Crunch in back-to-back games at CAA Arena. Both North Division rivals, this was an important pair of games for the BSens, who have been hovering in the middle of the division standings for the last few weeks.
On Friday night, with Toronto in town, Belleville came out flying. The first period was scoreless, which you wouldn’t expect given the 6-1 beating the BSens handed to the Marlies. It was the second period where things started to heat up with Belleville scoring four unanswered goals to take a commanding lead. The party started with Egor Sokolov splitting the defenders and scoring this absolute beauty.
Rourke Chartier, Ridly Greig and Cole Cassels were the other three goalscorers for the good guys. Early in the third, Toronto got themselves on the board but that was the only marker they could manage, with Belleville adding two to their total before the final buzzer.
While Toronto didn’t appear to come all that prepared for their trip to Belleville on Friday, Syracuse was playing at the top of their game on Saturday. In fact, just as Belleville did to Toronto, the Crunch tallied four goals to kick off the game, putting Belleville well behind through the first ten minutes of the opening period. Cole Reinhardt managed to break through and score one of his own, making it 4-1, in the final few minutes of the first. Reinhardt’s third of the year was courtesy of yet another beautiful Philippe Daoust assist.
Kicking off the second period, Chartier grabbed his ninth of the year, narrowing Belleville’s deficit to just two goals. Five minutes later, however, the Crunch regained their three goal lead with Daniel Walcott’s fifth of the year. Belleville was able to add two more but didn’t quite complete the comeback, falling 5-4 to the Crunch.
- Antoine Bibeau, back from injury, was solid this weekend, stopping 50 of the 52 shots he faced for a sterling 0.961 SV%.
- Egor Sokolov scored three goals and an assist this weekend, bringing him to 16 points through his first 15.
- Ridly Greig has been on a heater as well, of late, as his goal and assist this weekend bring him just shy of point per game territory (10 points through 11 games). The rookie has three goals and three assists in his last six games.
- From the back end, Maxence Guénette contributed three assists this weekend. With Jacob Bernard-Docker in Ottawa, the right shot defender has taken advantage of his opportunity with five points in his last five games.
- Speaking of right shot defenders, Lassi Thomson had a pair of assists himself this weekend, giving him a goal and four assists through his last five.
- Last week, Belleville added Brennan Saulnier to the lineup in a deal with the Laval Rocket and he has been the definition of instant dividends. Saulnier, 28, was acquired in exchange for future considerations as he’d been playing with Laval’s ECHL club in Trois-Rivieres to start this season. With Belleville, he’s compiled a goal and three assists through just three games, taking advantage of the opportunity Head Coach Troy Mann has placed before him.