Devils Feel The Crunch *5 – 3

Trevor Smith of the Syracuse Crunch scored three goals but was ultimately credited with four as they defeated the Devils in Albany.  Even in 2011 the Devils still can’t seem to catch a break at home.  My guess is if New Jersey doesn’t want to play Brian Rolston that Albany fans would be more than excited to see him back in town.

Albany got jump-started in the first by a Chad Wiseman slapper from the point on the power-play, his third from Matt Anderson and Adam Henrique.  But it wasn’t all peaches and cream on the man advantage for the Devs.  A giveaway midway through the period led to a two-on-one breakaway resulting in a MacGregor Sharp shorthanded tally to knot things at 1-1.

Then the controversy came late in the first.  On what was thought to be an icing call, Devils defenseman Alexander Urbom gave up on the play after touching up.  Syracuse then took the puck from behind the net and it was Trevor Smith who beat Mike McKenna for the goal.  Mckenna was irate soon thereafter and rightfully so as the replay showed the net came off its moorings before the puck crossed the line.

The Devils would rally though within the period’s last 24.8 seconds with the “return of the Mac” David McIntyre on the doorstep roofed his seventh marker on the year from Louis Robatille and Urbom, sending the contest tied to the locker room.

In the second two power-play goals by Trevor Smith hit the jackpot for Syracuse and put the Crunch up 4-2.  It was certainly not a period the Devils would wish to re-tweet.

The third and final stanza saw Michael Swift continue his hot streak.  Swift registered his eleventh goal on the power-play out front on a pretty pass from behind the net from Captain Stephen Gionta with Urbom picking up his second secondary assist.  For Swift it was also his eighth straight game with a point and the Devils trailed by a count of 4-3. 

The Devils would later have a 5-on-3 power-play and had a golden opportunity but Alexander Vasyunov couldn’t handle a bang-bang pass down low. 

Finally the salt city Crunch salted the game away with Smith recording a shorthanded empty net goal for his fourth on the night and a 5-3 victory for Syracuse over Albany.

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