TORONTO– With their roster far from being finalized, the Toronto Marlies took to the ice in Schomberg, Ontario and fell to the Syracuse Crunch 4-1.
After a scoreless first period, Crunch forward Nick Bonino opened the scoring in the second followed by another Crunch goal from Patrick Maroon before the period was through.
Entering the third down by two, Marlies forward Will Acton put his team on the board to cut the lead in half however it was as close as they could come as Dan Sexton and Kyle Palmieri added singles to put Toronto away.
The game marked the opening of pre-season hockey for the Marlies and head coach Dallas Eakins used it to examine some less familiar faces as they entered play without notables Marcel Mueller, Ryan Hamilton, Joe Colborne, Korbinian Holzer, Jeff Finger and Ben Scrivens.
Simon Gysbers and Josh Engel were the only defence men from last season’s roster who suited up for the tilt and it showed as the Crunch went three for four on the power-play.
Goalie Jussi Rynnas started the game for the Marlies and allowed two goals in 40 minutes before Mark Owuya took over for the final frame; also allowing two to get past him.
Luca Caputi left the game midway through the second period for an undisclosed reason but returned for the third and showed no signs for concern which is fortunate considering he spent much of last season injured.
After the game Chad Painchaud, Raymond Macias, Denny Urban and Dave Cowan were all assigned to the Reading Royals of the East Coast Hockey League.
With pre-season consisting of just two games, it’s expected that Eakins will dress Sunday’s scratches when these two teams meet up again on Tuesday night in Syracuse. However, until the Toronto Maple Leafs make their final cuts, which will be no later than Wednesday, the Marlies will have to wait to finalize their roster.
Opening night for the Marlies is October 8th when they head to New York to face the defending Calder Cup champion Binghamton Senators.
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