TORONTO– The Toronto Marlies were able to split a pair of games this week against North Division rivals, despite nearly dropping both contests.
Jerry D’Amigo’s sixth goal of the season was all the Marlies could come up with on Friday in a 5-1 defeat to the host Rochester Americans.
Dating back to last season, including playoffs, it was Toronto’s first loss to Rochester in 10 games and they are now 8-1-1 in games where they allow four or more goals.
Jussi Rynnas stopped 24-of-29 in defeat.
The Marlies failed to score on three chances with the man advantage while Rochester went 1 for 5.
The loss drops Toronto to just 10-11-3 on the road.
On Saturday Nicolas Deschamps scored the winning goal and added two assists as the Marlies came from behind to beat the visiting Hamilton Bulldogs.
Spencer Abbott, Carter Ashton and Simon Gysbers also scored for Toronto, which found itself down 2-0 before scoring four unanswered goals.
Rynnas made 26 saves to pick up his first win in five starts.
The Marlies went 1 for 6 on the power play while the Bulldogs failed to score on either of their chances with the man advantage.
Toronto is now 14-3-1 at the Ricoh Coliseum and its .806 home-ice win percentage is best of any club in the AHL.
Paul Ranger sat out both games as he is still battling with a concussion and has no time line for a return.
With just four wins in their last 10 outings, the Marlies are now 24-14-3 on the season and sit fifth in the Western Conference Standings. Their 52 points leave them one behind the Abbotsford Heat for first in the North Division.
Toronto’s next game is Feb. 6th when they host the Bulldogs in their 10th meeting of the season.
Here are the Toronto Marlies hot and cold performers for the week of Jan. 28th to Feb. 3rd.
Season Stats: 38 GP 7 G 7 A 14 PTS
With only one goal in his last 15 games, Deschamps broke out with his first multi-point performance of the season against the Bulldogs. He scored the winning goal 3:45 into the third period and chipped in with two assists and with a depleted Marlies roster, head coach Dallas Eakins will expect the 22-year-old’s production to pick up.
Season Stats: 30 GP 4 G 6 A 10 PTS
Gysbers is back to his style of play from last season and is running the Marlies power play alongside Jake Gardiner. He set up D’Amigo’s goal against Rochester and then scored on the PP against Hamilton. A healthy scratch to start the year, the defenceman could be logging major minutes down the stretch.
Season Stats: 2 GP 0 G 0 A 0 PTS
In just his second game since being re-called from the ECHL, Devane squared off with Hamilton’s veteran agitator Zack Stortini. With Toronto lacking in toughness, especially with Mark Fraser up with the Leafs, the 21-year-old may have to keep players honest to keep himself in the lineup.
Season Stats: 25 GP 9 G 9 A 18 PTS
In three games with the Marlies since his demotion, Gardiner has one assist and is minus-4. The Leafs will expect him to be ready to make the jump back to the NHL sooner than later so he will have to keep working at getting his legs under him.
Season Stats: 37 GP 5 G 6 A 11 PTS
Centering the Marlies shut-down line, Acton was caught on the ice for three of Rochester’s goals and is minus-5 in his last three contests. Eakins gave the free-agent walk-on the day off against Hamilton to refresh.
Season Stats: 19 GP 1 G 0 A 1 PTS
The rookie has seen an increase in ice time since the Leafs summoned players in early January, however he hasn’t been able to produce and has gone 12 games without a point. At this point in time Ross may still be adjusting to his role as a bottom-six guy while in junior he spent his time as a top-six goal scorer.
Look for the Toronto Marlies hot and cold performers every Monday.