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Three Fish tally four points as Walleye clinch season series with Cyclones

Friday, February 16th
Three Fish tally four points as Walleye clinch season series with Cyclones

CINCINNATI, OH – The Toledo Walleye defeated the Cincinnati Cyclones 6-4 on Friday night at the Heritage Bank Center.

What Happened:

The Toledo Walleye went South to begin their weekend by facing off with the Cincinnati Cyclones.

John Lethemon started between the pipes for the Walleye. Riley McCourt and Grant Gabriele manned the defence while Sam Craggs, Conlan Keenan and Brandon Kruse led the Toledo attack.

Rylan Parenteau defended the home net for the Cyclones. Josh Burnside and Jalen Smereck staffed the defence while Zack Andrusiak, Patrick Polino and Sahil Panwar filled out the Cincinnati attack.

The action began with a Cyclones power play at 6:13 after Orrin Centazzo was sent to the Walleye penalty box for Cross-Checking. The Walleye killed off the power play.

The Fish got their first power play chance at 11:57 when Nick Isaacson was hit with a Roughing penalty for the Cyclones. The Cyclones killed off the power play.

The Walleye started the scoring at 15:53 when Craggs found the net. Keenan and Trenton Bliss assisted the icebreaker to start the Walleye on top 1-0.

The Cyclones came right back to tie the game at 1-1 at 17:07 when Ben Hawerchuk scored his first goal of the season in his Cyclones debut. Aaron Miller tallied the solo assist in his debut after being acquired from Norfolk.

That wrapped the first period action with the Walleye and the Cyclones tied 1-1.

The Walleye outshot the Cyclones 9-8 in the period. Both Toledo and Cincinnati were 0/1 in the period on the power play.

The second period began with a Walleye man-advantage at :33 when Smereck was assessed an Interference penalty.

The Walleye converted the power play in short order at 1:17 as Brandon Hawkins buried his 26th goal of the season to reclaim a 2-1 lead. McCourt and Centazzo added assists to the score. Speaking of the score, the goal by Hawkins was his 100th as a member of the Walleye, and was also his 35th power play goal with the Walleye which moves him past A.J. Jenks for second-most all-time in that mark.

The Cyclones got their next power play chance at 2:25 when the Walleye were caught with Too Many Men on the ice. Chase Gresock would serve the penalty for the Fish. The Walleye killed off the power play.

The Walleye stretched it to 3-1 at 7:56 when Hawkins found paydirt again for his 27th goal of the season. Bliss and Centazzo each added their second assists of the evening.

Cincinnati shortened it to 3-2 at 9:44 when Smereck flipped one past Lethemon. Shaun Miller and Colton Kalezic added assists to the score.

The Walleye re-extended the gap to two at 4-2 at 10:01 when Bliss lit the lamp for his third point of the night. Gabriele and Hawkins assisted the score with Hawkins’ assist also being his third point of the night.

The Walleye got their third power play chance of the night at 16:07 after Cole Fraser was hit with an Unsportsmanlike Conduct Bench minor.

The Walleye converted the power play with Hawkins’ third goal of the night and his fourth point of the game at 16:28. Kruse and McCourt assisted the score to make it 5-2 Walleye. Hawkins is the seventh Walleye to record a hat trick this season. That marked Hawkins’ fourth point of the game, tying the team-high set by Alexandre Doucet back on October 27th against Fort Wayne.

That wrapped the second period action with the Walleye leading the Cyclones 5-2.

The Walleye outshot the Cyclones in the period 13-6 and 22-14 cumulatively. Toledo was 2/2 on the power play in the period while Cincinnati was 0/1.

The third period action was a lot of quick and quiet hockey until the Cyclones scored at 12:14 to make it 5-3. Kalezic found the twine with Aaron Miller and Hawerchuk assisting. All three landed their second point of the evening on the score.

The Fish tacked on another when McCourt sniped a score from the blue line to make it 6-4. Bliss and Centazzo assisted the score. McCourt and Bliss each recorded their fourth point of the night on the score, matching Hawkins and Doucet for the team-high, while Centazzo netted his third point.

A line brawl would ensue at 16:39 with a handful of penalties and a Walleye power play. Adrien Beraldo was given a five-minute major for Fighting, while Keenan was given a Roughing minor and a ten-minute Misconduct. On the flip side, Ole Julian Bjorgvik-Holm was given a five-minute major for Fighting and Sean Allen was given a Double Minor for Roughing and a ten-minute Misconduct, putting the Walleye on the power play.

The Walleye power play was cut short as Mitch Lewandowski was sent to the penalty box for Slashing at 17:53, giving the Cyclones another power play chance.

Cincinnati converted the man-advantage at 19:22 when Isaacson found the net to make it 6-4 Walleye. Andrusiak and Smereck assisted the tally for the Cyclones.

The horns sounded with the Walleye claiming a 6-4 win over the Cincinnati Cyclones. The win was also the seventh against Cincinnati this season, clinching the season series between the two clubs.

The Walleye outshot the Cyclones 8-5 in the third period and 30-19 overall. Toledo was 0/1 on the power play in the period and 2/4 overall, while Cincinnati was 1/1 in the period and 1/3 overall.

Hawkins was awarded the game-winning goal, marking his 17th with the Walleye, moving him past Evan Rankin and Shane Berschbach for sole possession of second-most game-winning goals in Walleye history.

Three Stars Sponsored by Local 245:

  1. Brandon Hawkins (3G, 1A; GWG; 100th Walleye Goal)
  2. Trenton Bliss (1G, 3A)
  3. Riley McCourt (1G, 3A)

What’s Next:

The Toledo Walleye will head back to Kalamazoo to do battle with the Wings for the third time in four games tomorrow, Saturday, February 17, 2024 at Wings Event Center with puck drop coming at 7:00 pm ET.

Upcoming Home Games

Full Schedule
Playoffs: Round 1, Game 5 (C)
Saturday, April 27th
Playoffs: Round 1, Game 5 (C)
Puck Drops:
7:15 PM EDT
Huntington Center
Kalamazoo Wings
KAL Kalamazoo Wings
at
Toledo Walleye
TOL Toledo Walleye
Huntington Center
Playoffs: Round 1, Game 7 (D)
Wednesday, May 1st
Playoffs: Round 1, Game 7 (D)
Puck Drops:
7:15 PM EDT
Huntington Center
Kalamazoo Wings
KAL Kalamazoo Wings
at
Toledo Walleye
TOL Toledo Walleye
Huntington Center

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