Tampa Bay Lightning AHL affiliate Syracuse Crunch sweep the Rochester Americans in spectacular fashion in the first round of the Calder Cup Playoffs
Just three games into the postseason, the Syracuse Crunch are already moving on to the next round. The Crunch made quick work of the Rochester Americans, the AHL affiliate of the Buffalo Sabres, and are waiting for their next opponent.
What’s especially impressive about this sweep is that the Crunch scored at least 6 goals in every game. They have become the first team since the 1988 Hershey Bears to accomplish this feat. Their scoring came in large part to Matthew Peca, who had two goals and six assists in the three games.
Gabriel Dumont, who was claimed off of waivers by the Ottawa Senators and then reclaimed by the Lightning earlier this year, has also been lighting it up for the Crunch with three goals and two assists. The Lightning’s first-round pick in last year’s draft Cal Foote also has a goal and an assist in his first trip into the AHL postseason.
Eddie Pasquale got the nod for two of the three games and while he has won both, has a postseason save percentage of .873%. Pasquale was acquired from the Edmonton Oilers earlier in the season for future considerations. At the age of 27, Pasquale isn’t expected to make a difference on the Bolts roster but instead was added to do exactly what he is doing now, win with the Crunch.
In the last game of the series, Connor Ingram got his first start of the postseason and made 33 saves on 36 shots to power the Crunch to a 6-3 win. The 21-year-old goaltender appeared in 35 regular season games for the Crunch this year and posted a .914 save percentage and four shutouts en route to a 20 win season.
The Syracuse Crunch will face either the Utica Comets or the Toronto Marlies in the second round. The teams are the affiliates of the Vancouver Canucks and the Toronto Maple Leafs respectively. Currently, the Marlies lead the best of five series two games to one with Game 5 taking place on Friday.