Tag Archives: Michael Morrissey

Knights Close Out 2017 With Sweep

Saturday brought with it the Knights final game of the 2017 calendar year. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton entered the tilt with the opportunity to gain sole possession of first place in the NAHL’s East Division with a win. Their opponent for the second straight day was the Kenai River Brown Bears.

After a strong offensive showing in a 5-2 win, the Knights looked to their forecheck to lead the way again on Saturday. After a quiet first seven minutes in which each side traded an unsuccessful power play, the Knights awoke.

At 7:25 Adrian Danchenko kicked off an impressive outing when he fired a shot through a screen to best Kenai River goalie Gavin Enright. Anthony Firriolo picked up his 12th assist, while Gabe Temple added his sixth to set up the game’s first score.

31 seconds later Temple would fill in the goal column as well as the Knights first-round pick willed a puck through Enright on a wraparound set up by Danchenko and Tomas Koblizek. The 2-0 lead held through the end of the period as Christian Stoever, fresh off a stint in the USHL, coupled with the Knights defense to hold the Brown Bears off the board.

A quiet opening to the second frame gave way to a penalty parade featuring 11 combined infractions. Both power plays were stymied by steady penalty kill play on each side of the ice, holding the score in place at 2-0. A fight between Michael Morrissey and Michael Spethmann kicked up the intensity in what had already proven to be a chippy weekend just past the halfway point of play.

As the second wound down, 4-on-4 play ensued at 16:49 following a Kenai River penalty. With added space on the ice, Tom Farrell and Luke Robinson set up an Adrian Danchenko deke and drive to the net where he bested Enright for his eighth goal of the year, his second of the day.

Leading 3-0 to start the the third, the Knights penalties finally came back to bite them, as former Wilkes-Barre/Scranton blue-liner Markuss Komuls cashed in a perfectly placed power play goal at 5:46 (Zach Krajnik, Filip Karlsson).

The Knights would bounce back, capitalizing on a power play of their own when Curtis Carlson fired a puck home at 11:29 from Jack Olmstead to re-gain a three-goal lead. Olmstead would combine with Matt Kidney to put the game to rest a few minutes later. Just past 17:40, Kidney executed a brilliant poke check in neutral ice before carrying the puck back the other way to create an odd-man rush. In front of the net, Kidney faked to Curtis Carlson before passing back to Jack Olmstead in the slot where the latter buried the puck for a 5-1 lead.

Christian Stoever would close out the contest with a stellar 32 saves on 33 shots in his first game back, on his way to his 11th win of the season. Gavin Enright was solid, despite the five goals allowed, making 36 stops on 41 shots. The Knights and Brown Bears both went 1/7 on the power play and 6/7 on the penalty kill on the afternoon. The win and subsequent two points puts the Knights ahead of the Philadelphia Rebels in the East by one point.

The Knights will look to continue building on a three-game winning streak with a two-game series against the midwest-leading Fairbanks Ice Dogs next weekend. The first will take place on Friday, January 5th and 1:00 pm. The second will be played on Saturday the 6th at 6:30 pm. Both games will be broadcast on hockeytv.com. Stay tuned to www.wbsknights.com and Knights social media for all news and updates!

On behalf of the entire organization, the Knights would like to wish all their fans, players, families, and staff a very healthy and happy New Year and look forward to bringing you more wins in 2018!

Donovan, Penalty Kill, Tomeo Lead Knights Past Tomahawks

Following a weekend away from the rink, the Knights returned to East Division play against the Johnstown Tomahawks Friday. It was fitting that the most recent meeting between the pair was yet another closely fought contest. Four of the prior six tilts were decided by two goals or less.

Round seven of Knights-Tomahawks pitted David Tomeo anchoring the crease for second-place Wilkes-Barre/Scranton against Kade Phipps in goal for fifth-place Johnstown. Both netminders were supported by solid defensive efforts in a true-to-form blue collar battle.

In an opening period that saw just 12 combined shots on goal, the Tomahawks cashed in on their very first, courtesy of Samuel Solensky. At 1:59, the Tomahawks leading-scorer was assisted by Donovan Ott and Chase Davidson on the tally, Solensky’s sixth against the Knights this season. The remainder of the period saw both teams limited by steady back-checking and play in net, leaving the score at 1-0 after 20 minutes.

The second period saw an uptick in shots and as well as penalty minutes, as both sides took unsuccessful turns on the man-advantage. Both Phipps and Tomeo remained steady in net to keep the score 1-0 three quarters of the way through the middle frame. Tyrone Bronte ended the drought at 16:15 off a wrister set up by Reed Robinson.

The tie would linger well into the third with more failed power plays and saves coming on both ends of the ice. The Knights would at last find their go-ahead goal at 16:55 when Mike Morrissey led Shay Donovan over the blue line where the latter hammered slap shot past Phipps. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton would go on to withstand the Tomahawks extra attacker for the final 1:17 of play to earn a 2-1 victory.

In Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s third-straight win, Tomeo made 27 saves on 28 shots, good for his sixth win of the season. Phipps stopped 19 of 21 in his first loss. Both teams were 5/5 on the penalty kill.

Knights in the USHL: Stoever Stays Steady

Knights fans may have noticed the absence of Christian Stoever from the Wikes-Barre/Scranton lineup card Friday. Stoever is currently playing for the Des Moines Buccaneers in the USHL. In his first start last night, the ’00 goalie stopped 19 of 22 shots on goal on his way to his first USHL win. The third round pick has a 10-2-2 record with a 3.00 GAA and .908 save percentage with the Knights this season.

Next Up:

The EHL Knights will kick off a two-game home stand this afternoon against the New England Wolves at 3:45 pm EST. Free admission will be granted to any fans attending the Revolution Ice Centre. The game will be available on hockeytv.com. Follow @WBSKnightsEHL on twitter for updates.

The NAHL Knights will take on the Tomahawks again tonight at 7:00 pm EST. The game will also be broadcast on hockeytv.com. Follow Knights social media and visit www.nahl.com for live updates!

 

 

 

 

Stellar Stoever Lifts Knights Over Rebels

It wasn’t pretty, but it was two points. The Knights can hang their hats on a gritty, albeit non-traditional win following their 2-1 victory Sunday afternoon. For the third-consecutive game, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton played host to the Philadelphia Rebels following last night’s 5-3 Knights victory.

The Rebels entered play Sunday having several regulars return along the blue line that had missed several games prior. The influence was apparent, as Philadelphia got off to a suffocating start. Their forecheck was again fast and physical as they hemmed the Knights in their own zone for much of the first period. In net for his second start of the three-game series was Christian Stoever, who was nothing short of spectacular on Sunday.

Mounting 18 shots on net in the first frame, the Rebels could only push one puck by the 2000 goalie, with that tally coming at 18:10 on the power play. The sequence was started by point play from Carson Moniz and Diarmad DiMurro before Moniz ripped a shot and rebound to Adam Peck, who promptly buried the goal to give the Rebels the 1-0 lead. Beyond that point, the Rebels simply could not solve Stoever.

The second period fell in line with the first, where the Rebels again controlled play and time of possession. Neither team found the twine in the middle frame, with Stoever stopping eight shots, and Rebels goalie Ryan Keane saving six. A late period surge by the Knights forecheck made the latter netminder make a few quality stops, but did set the table for things to come in the third.

Down 1-0 with 20 minutes to play, the Knights would again find themselves under heavy pressure from the Rebels attack. Though Philadelphia had the overwhelming majority of chances, the difference in the final period was that the Knights were able to finish on their own.

Around the 9:30 mark of the third period Jack Olmstead, Curtis Carlson, and Matt Kidney set up shop in the Philadelphia zone. With Luke Robinson and Tom Farrell on the back end, the Knights cycled effectively until Kidney put a shot on goal that pulled Keane out of the net and generated a heavy rebound that Carlson buried to tie the game at one.

The Rebels were quick to mount pressure in response, but Stoever continued to stand on his head, denying Philadelphia all 20 shots they put on his plate in the third.

In the final minute of regulation, the Knights again would again stand up on the puck in the attacking zone. This time it was Reed Robinson feeding a pass to Luke Robinson, who turned a shot in front which was re-directed to twine by a camped out Michael Morrissey.

Suddenly on the wrong end of the scoreboard in a game they largely controlled, the Rebels pulled Keane for an extra attacker. In the final 51 seconds, they could not solve Stoever as the Knights stole a game on Sunday to improve to 16-6-3. Their 35 points as a team give them a three-point advantage in the East Division standings heading into a weekend off. The total also moves them into a tie with the Shreveport Mudbugs for most points in the entire NAHL.

The Knights will be back in action on December 8th and 9th, when they travel to Johnstown for a pair of road games at the 1st Summit Arena. Stay up to date with all Knights news by following team social media and checking back at www.wbsknights.com.

NAHL: Knights Roar Back with 5-3 Win over Rebels

Following a tough home loss to the Rebels Wednesday, the Knights looked to bounce back in game two of three against Philadelphia with relatively high stakes on the line. The winner of Saturday night’s contest would head into Sunday in first place in the east division.

With puck drop came a blistering pace from both forechecks, as each team traded rushes down the ice. David Tomeo was stellar in between the pipes as he fended off a healthy offering of quality chances from the Rebels attack in the opening five minutes.

Rallying behind their netminder’s steady work, the Knights counter-offensive was led by their starting line of Justin Engelkes, Tyrone Bronte, and Mike Gelatt. Just past the 5:00 mark, Gelatt pushed a puck off the  half-wall to Engelkes, who’s rebound found Bronte alone in front for the game’s first goal.

Just prior to the halfway point in the first period, Mike Morrissey flipped a puck to the corner where Reed Robinson dug it loose through a battle and centered it perfectly to Adrian Danchenko in the slot. Danchenko ripped a shot past Rebels goalie Eli Billing to build the Knights a 2-0 lead that would hold through the end of first period.

The Rebels opened the second with a furious pace, attacking and testing Tomeo repeatedly. Through a scrum in front, Adam Peck finally cracked the scoreboard for Philadelphia as Tomeo was screened through traffic. Jensen Zerban and Konour Peterson were credited with the assists.

Philadelphia continued to pressure through the first ten minutes of the period, forcing a Knights penalty at 6:15. 53 seconds later Jensen Zerban collected a rebound from Aaron Maguyon and threw a puck to the twine over a diving Tomeo. Dusan Kmec picked up the secondary assist on the game-tying goal.

Just over a minute later, the Knights retook the lead after catching the Rebels in a line change. Shay Donovan saw a waiting Matt Kidney at the Philadelphia blue line while the Rebels cleared off for the switch. From deep in his own territory, Donovan threaded a perfect pass for Kidney as he gained the zone. Kidney pulled back in front of a back-checking Rebel and fed Jack Olmstead moving toward the net. Olmstead fired a wrister past Billing to take a 3-2 lead.

Kidney would play catalyst again in the period’s final minute. As a stretch pass came up the boards in neutral ice, Mike Gelatt tapped the puck to Kidney, who dragged it free through traffic and fed a streaking Tyrone Bronte. The Australian forward beat all parties back to the net where he deked around Billing and buried his second goal of the game.

A two-goal lead is hardly a safe advantage in hockey, and against a Rebels team that had already erased one such deficit, the Knights entered the third wary of a comeback. Philadelphia continued their high-paced attack through the opening ten minutes and were rewarded at 9:21 with a goal that trimmed the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton lead to one. Set up by a Jensen Zerban takeaway, Alex Frye found Andrew Bellant over the Knights blue line where the latter burned through the last line of defense, and placed a puck past Tomeo for the Rebels third goal.

Each side proceeded to trade chances down the stretch of regulation. It wasn’t until the clock read 1:19 before the Rebels were able to pull Billing for an extra attacker. Though they were able to push the puck deep, Philadelphia couldn’t solve Tomeo. With 32 seconds to go, the Knights goalie kicked a save over to Mike Gelatt deep in his own corner. Gelatt proceeded to fire the puck down the sheet and find the open net, securing a victory for the Knights.

Back in first place in the East, the Knights will have little time to rest. The Rebels are back at the Revolution at 2:00 PM EST this afternoon. The game will be broadcast on hockeytv.com. Follow Knights social media and visit nahl.com for updates!

Knights Jump to First Place with Shootout Win Over Johnstown

On Friday, the Knights entered Johnstown with the NAHL’s and East Division’s second-highest point total. They left the 1st Summit Arena at the Cambria County War Memorial in first place across the board. Getting there wasn’t easy.

A back-and-forth first period saw Wilkes-Barre/Scranton mount 11 shots on Johnstown’s veteran goalie Britt League. He answered them all. The Tomahawks responded with seven offerings on Knights starter Christian Stoever. Tomahawks forward Christian Gorscak squeezed the lone goal of the first past Stoever at 9:08 on the set up by Andrew Andary and Pavel Kharin.

In the second period the Knights would continue to plug away, increasing their shot total to 24 on League, while Stoever turned away all eight shots sent on his net in the frame. The Knights continued pressure was rewarded when at 6:31, when Michael Morrissey found Reed Robinson with space above the circles on a power play. The big-bodied forward continued his stellar season when he walked the puck down, picked his spot and fired a dart past League to tie the game at one with his 10th goal of the season.

The game went to the third period gridlocked 1-1. The Knights broke the tie when Jack Olmstead lofted a long stretch pass to Matt Kidney behind the defense. Kidney marched in on goal alone and ripped a shot by League to give the Knights the 2-1 lead.

It appeared the advantage would be the final score as time ran down to the final seconds with Tomahawks still trailing and their net emptied. Instead, in regulation’s final moments, Samuel Solensky dug a puck out of a pile on the Knights half wall, sent it behind the net, where Andy Nedeljkovic centered it in front to a crashing Toby Sengvongxay. Sengvongxay pushed the puck past Stoever with 0.2 seconds left on the clock to force OT.

In the three-on-three extra time, neither side could solve each other’s netminder as Stoever and League stood down all chances on goal. The game moved to the shootout, and with the transition continued each goalie’s stellar play. Through the first two rounds, neither team scored. In round three, Reed Robinson buried his chance to give the Knights an opportunity to win. Andy Nedeljkovic kept his clutch night going by tying the shootout with a last-chance effort in the bottom of the third.

In hockey’s version of extra innings neither team found the net in the next three rounds. Christian Stoever made two incredible saves in rounds five and six  to rob Sam Solensky and Donovan Ott. Stoever’s save on Solensky came off a great move in front, while Ott was robbed with a mid-air puck deflection off of Stoever’s stick.

In the top of the 7th round, Knights first-round pick Gabe Temple ripped a puck past League to again move his team into the lead. Faced with another last-chance, down the ice came Tomahawks captain Cade Groton to attempt to tie the contest once more. He drove hard to the front of the net, but Stoever went down and turned the puck away for the Knights victory.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s fifth-straight win, and 10th-straight game with a point or more, now moves the team to 13-3-3. Their 29 points leads the East Division and the NAHL. They’ll look to keep their hot streak going with another competition in Johnstown tonight. Puck drop is at 7:00 pm EST. The game can be viewed on http://www.hockeytv.com. Stay tuned to Knights social media and nahl.com for updates!

 

 

Knights Finish Showcase with Shootout Thriller

Kidney, Morrissey, Goaltending the way as the Knights leave Minnesota with three more victories.

The Knights final showdown in Blaine saw an 9:30 am start against the Corpus Christi Ice Rays. For the Knights, the game was their sixth in nine days. Goalies Dave Tomeo and Chad Veltri exchanged saves in a scoreless opening period that saw both teams struggle to consistently attack from the middle of the ice.

The following period saw more of the same, until Matt Novo fired a puck past Tomeo (Moncovich, Osmundson) to put the Ice Rays on the board. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton was given a break when it appeared that Corpus Christi scored a third goal not long after Novo’s score, but the officials deemed that the net came its moorings prior to the puck crossing the goal line. In response, the Knights mounted shots but couldn’t solve Veltri until 16:55, when Thomas Farrell found a streaking Matt Kidney behind the defense, and the forward potted the breakaway equalizer.

The gridlock returned for the first 10 minutes of the third, but the Knights took their first two penalties of the game to aid the Ice Rays offensive presence. They were finally rewarded at 10:21, when on a power play, Angus Scott flipped a slick backhand shot to beat Tomeo and regain the lead.

Following the score, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton pushed their way back into the attacking zone but still found issue in finding the spaces around Veltri. With time winding down in the final minutes, tensions flared on a pile up in front of Tomeo. In the ensuing scrum, Tomeo removed his helmet and was assessed a game misconduct. The remaining penalties created 4-on-4 hockey for the rest of the third, but the Knights were forced to put Christian Stoever in off the bench with just over a minute left in regulation.

Stoever’s stay was brief as the Knights quickly pulled him in favor of the extra attacker. All appeared lost as a turnover near the Knights net looked all-but destined to result in a Corpus Christi empty-net tally. Instead, Matt Kidney made a last-second stick lift and pulled the puck back to his possession. His exit pass started a rush back to Corpus Christi’s end of the ice where Curtis Carlson rang a shot off the post. In the ensuing tangle for possession, Mike Morrissey planted the game-tying goal past Veltri with 46 seconds left on the clock.

Headed for overtime, the Knights were called for tripping with just two seconds left in the third, giving Corpus Christi the 4-on-3 for an extended period in the extra time. The Knights, led by Stoever’s excellent work in net, were able to kill the penalty and rob the Ice Rays of several grade-A chances. Once play returned to 3-on-3, Veltri stood tall to turn away a handful of quality Knights chances to force a shootout.

In the best-of-three shootout Stoever stopped the first two shots for the Knights, while Veltri fended off Olmstead. In the Knights second attempt, Matt Kidney ripped a shot top shelf to gain the lead. On Corpus Christi’s last chance, Stoever went all the way to the ice and stonewalled Matt Novo to lock down the win.

The Knights move to 5-1 on the year, finishing 3-1 in Blaine. They are now 1-0 in games settled by both overtime and shootout. Dave Tomeo was stellar in 58:51 before his removal. Stoever was a perfect 4-4 in relief and then 3-3 in the shootout. They are currently tied for first place in the NAHL East division with 10 points. The two goalies have combined for a  .932 save percentage through six games. They’re next game will come at home against the Philadelphia Rebels on October 6th at the Class of 1923 Arena at 7:10 pm.

Knights Charge through Day One of Showcase

Photo Credit: NAHL.com

Led by Steady Stoever, Knights withstand Bulls to improve to 3-0

The NAHL Showcase kicked off Wednesday, and in the Knights third trip to the event, they looked to stay undefeated on the young season.

Their first opponent, the Amarillo Bulls, also entered competition without a loss. Things started quickly for the Bulls. At 5:48, Michael McPherson put a pass from the corner on a line back to the top of the slot to find an open Marcus Chorney who fired a shot past Knights goalie Christian Stoever.

Stoever, in his first start with the Knights, didn’t blink. A third-round pick in this year’s NAHL Entry Draft, the ’00 goaltender made a slew of impressive saves throughout the afternoon to keep Amarillo flustered, even during their heaviest shifts of offensive pressure.

The Knights attack got its start in the second half of the opening frame. After minutes of sustained offensive pressure, Tyrone Bronte continued his stellar start to the season. The Australian import extended his point streak to three games after he ripped a Jack Olmstead offering off the doorstep and past Amarillo goalie Jason Grande.

34 seconds later, Matt Kidney led Curtis Carlson to the net where Carlson slipped his way around Grande for the 2-1 lead.

Fueled by their physicality and improved puck possession, the Knights continued to apply pressure in the game’s middle frame. They were rewarded in the period’s first minute when Mike Morrissey and Reed Robinson drove hard to the and planted a rebound beyond the reach of Grande to build a Knights 3-1 lead.

Robinson was credited the goal while Morrissey collected the primary assist, with the secondary serving as Blake Kryska’s first point of the season. Robinson and Morrissey’s battling was a staple of the Knights consistent attack through the second, with both players displaying their size and veteran status by winning up and down the ice.

The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton defense, in-step with its quick-paced forecheck, won puck battles, made exit passes quickly, and kept the middle of the ice clear. Only in the second period’s final five minutes was the unit heavily tested in the form of two power plays in which they held Amarillo scoreless. Though they did not find the net, the Bulls power play pressure would be set the table for the third period.

In the final 20 minutes of regulation, Amarillo would regain the speed and pacing that enabled them to score the game’s opening goal. The Bulls consistency on the attack built as the clock wound down, while the Knights struggled to clear their own zone.

The culmination of Amarillo’s pressure and earlier power play efforts would converge at the 11:27 mark of the third period. Colin Price and Alex Truscott would combine to generate a loose puck in front of Stoever that was ultimately squeezed through by Jon Russell for the power play goal.

The score brought the Bulls within one, and the momentum fully to their cause. Despite this, the Knights defense and goaltending made plays when they had to, keeping their lead into the game’s final two minutes.

It was as the Bulls began to contemplate pulling their goalie for the extra attacker that they took a late penalty for head contact. In the game’s final minute, down by one, they had no choice but to trade their goalie for just a fifth skater.

With the crease vacant, Amarillo fought valiantly to tie the game. They were largely successful in keeping play in the offensive zone for the remainder of regulation, but the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton defense, coupled with Stoever withstood Amarillo’s rally long enough to secure the win.

Stoever earned his first victory in his Knights regular season debut, stopping 23 of the 25 shots he faced. Though he has had a head start on most of the league, Knights forward Tyrone Bronte is third in the NAHL in scoring with two goals and three assists through three games played.

The Knights will take their 3-0 record into a contest with the Shreveport Mudbugs tomorrow at 12:30 pm EST. The game can be viewed at HockeyTV.com. For real-time updates, follow @WBSKnights on Twitter and visit www.nahl.com/scores.