Byron Froese tied it late and T.J. Brennan scored in overtime to lead the Toronto Marlies to a 3-2 win over the visiting Albany Devils at Ricoh Coliseum on Saturday.
The third straight win for the Marlies (3-0-0) was the second game this season that required extra time, this one being settled during the five minute three-on-three overtime format.
— AHL (@TheAHL) October 17, 2015
“I think it’s exciting,” said Marlies defenceman Brennan after the game. “I think it’s a great way to finish the game for both the players and the fans.
“There’s a lot of room out there, but if you want to look at it as a bad thing, a lot of scoring chances, or you can look at it as you get a lot of scoring chances.
“We have a pretty skilled team, so we try to take advantage of that. I’m sure sometimes it will come up and bite us, but we’ll try to end up on top most of the time.”
Toronto was not at its best through two periods of play and trailed Albany 2-1 for the majority of the game.
Froese (3) beat Devils goalie Yann Danis (0-1-1) with 1:57 left in the third to tie it in a period that saw Toronto outshoot its opponent 14-3.
“It seemed like we had a real good third even though the first and second weren’t great,” said Brennan of the team’s slow start. “But that’s the good thing, it seems that we have a good team that if we put it all together we can kind of come back from anything, so it was a good character win by us.”
Forward Connor Brown had a solid game for the Marlies, assisting on the game-winning goal and was a plus-3 on the night.
He shared the same opinion as Brennan when analyzing the team’s play throughout the game.
“Yeah, I thought we got better as the game went on,” said the Toronto, Ont., native. “We had a bit of a slow start there. I thought we had a really good third period, but we have to come out of the gate stronger.
“We were kind of forcing plays up the rush that weren’t there, so instead of that we kind of extended our possessions in the zone and we were hard on them.
“The type of play when you play with desperation at the end. We needed a goal, so we put the pedal down, but we have to get back to doing that earlier in the game.”
Albany started the scoring at 7:48 with Corey Tropp’s first of the season on the Devils’ only shot on Marlies goaltender Antoine Bibeau to that point. The goal came just moments after Richard Clune and Chris McKelvie dropped the gloves during a scrum in front of the visitor’s bench.
William Nylander (2) squared things up with just 1:10 remaining in the frame to send the teams to their dressing rooms tied 1-1. Marlies defenceman Justin Holl assisted on the goal for his first AHL point in his fifth game in the league.
Early in the second with Viktor Loov in the box for tripping, Albany forward Mike Sislo (1) scored to regain the lead for the Devils at 1:55.
Sam Carrick took back-to-back penalties mid-way through the second, first for slashing at 10:24, then again for tripping at 12:40, just 16 seconds after serving his first infraction.
The Marlies controlled the play to begin the third as they pushed for the equalizer, outshooting Albany 8-2 at the half-way mark of the frame.
The Devils were forced to use their timeout with 7:32 remaining after a tired group iced the puck, but Toronto was unable to keep the play in its offensive zone following the faceoff.
Antoine Bibeau (2-0-0) made 19 saves in his second start of the year while Devils netminder Danis stopped 34.