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Rivermen Double Up Griffins 2-1
Another lethargic performance leads to loss...
By Jason Kasiorek
December 5th, 2012

Grand Rapids had a hard time finding their legs tonight and allowed the last place team in the division to waltz in and take two points away from them in a lackluster 2-1 loss. Rookie Riley Sheahan managed the only goal for the Griffins, scoring his fourth of the season, a shorthanded goal in the second period. The teams potent offense has gone quiet, and the vaunted powerplay went 0 for 4. Netminder Petr Mrazek absorbed the loss, his second of the season, making 21 saves on 23 shots.

Neither team came out of the gates with much jump and the lack of intensity is palpable. Jurco snuck a puck through a Peoria defenseman for a partial breakaway on McKenna, but was interfered with just enough to not get off a good shot. The only real excitement during the period came on the Griffins' powerplay where they had good puck movement and had a couple of nice chances. Shots on Goal: GR 11 - Peo 7.

Mrazek flashed the pad to take away what looked like a sure goal on the doorstep. Peoria opened the scoring just past the 4 minute mark of the period when Cracknell snared a loose puck and snapped it off the post and into the net behind Mrazek. Ferraro created some excitement when he split the defense and almost won a footrace to the puck for a great chance on McKenna. Grand Rapids got on the board midway through the period scoring a shorthanded tally. Sheahan stole the puck and turned it up ice for a 2-on-1, he made a nice move, sliding into the slot and ripped a high shot past McKenna. A minute later on the same powerplay, Peoria struck again. Hensick in the corner put a shot on net that was banged home by Schwarz to regain the lead. Shots on Goal: GR 11 - Peo 10.

The third period was slow paced with Peoria playing all back in their own end to sit on the lead. The Griffins managed some intensity in the last few minutes of the period, and then looked to be in good position to score the game tying goal. The Rivermen took a late penalty and coach balshill summoned Mrazek to the bench for the extra attacker, giving GR a 6-4 man advantage. The Griffins just couldn't get the puck past McKenna and the buzzer sounded on a 2-1 loss. Shots on Goal: GR 7 - Peo 6. For the Game: GR 29 - Peo 23.

Tatar/Pare - Andersson - Nyquist
Pare/Tatar - Sheahan - Jurco
Hoggan - Ferraro - Aubry/Tatar
Grant - Raedeke - Callahan
Tatar - Sheahan - Pare

Paetsch - Smith
Almquist - Lashoff
Billins - Evans

Starter: Mrazek
Backup: McCollum


Tatar - Andersson - Nyquist
Smith - Billins

Pare - Sheahan - Ferraro
Almquist - Paetsch

Sheahan/Andersson - Ferraro
Paetsch - Smith

Raedeke - Andersson
Evans - Lashoff

Sheahan - Aubry


Grand Rapids looked like they played down to the level of their competition the fifth place Peoria Rivermen. very little spark or intensity from Grand Rapids and almost no physical play until the last few minutes of the game. I credit Peoria for taking the lead and then playing in a defensive shell the rest of the game, but the Griffins had more then they showed tonight.

Official Game Sheet