TORONTO– Despite showing signs of fatigue as they played three games in less than 48 hours, the Toronto Marlies were able to win two of the three and extend their lead atop the North Division standings to eight points with 11 games remaining in the regular season.
Ben Scrivens turned away all 31 shots he faced, picking up his third shutout of the season, as Toronto blanked the host Grand Rapids Griffins 2-0 on Friday.
Philippe Dupuis’s first period goal stood up as the winner for the Marlies, who beat Grand Rapids for the first time this season in five meetings, while Jerry D’Amigo added his 14th goal of the season into an empty net.
Mike Zigomanis, Jesse Blacker and Greg Scott each picked up an assist.
Ty Conklin stopped 20 of 21 shots for the Griffins, who sit fourth in the North, in a losing effort.
Toronto went 0 for 3 on the power play while their top-ranked penalty kill held Grand Rapids from scoring on either of their opportunities with the man advantage.
Nazem Kadri recorded his first multi-point game since November 29th as he scored two goals to lead Toronto over the visiting Milwaukee admirals 3-2 on Saturday.
Ryan Hamilton scored his team-leading 23rd goal of the season for the Marlies while Zigomanis assisted on all three goals.
D’Amigo, Dupuis and Simon Gysbers also picked up assists.
Brodie Dupont and Kyle Wilson each scored for the Admirals, who sit five points out of the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Jussi Rynnas turned away 24 shots for his ninth win of the season and second since returning from the Reading Royals of the ECHL, as Atte Engren made 23 saves in defeat.
Toronto went 1 for 4 on the power play while Milwaukee failed to score on three chances with the extra man.
Toronto’s four-game winning streak came to end on Sunday as the Chicago Wolves downed the host Marlies 3-2.
Michael Davies had a goal and an assist for the Wolves, who sit third in the West four points behind Toronto, as Bill Sweatt and Kevin Connauton added a goal apiece.
Nicolas Deschamps and Dupuis each scored their 1oth goals of the season for the Marlies, who fell behind 3-0 in the first period before Deschamps finally got them on the board 17:04 into the second.
Eddie Lack made 20 saves to record his 18th win of the year while Scrivens allowed three goals on 11 shots before getting pulled.
Rynnas came in to start the second period and stopped all 12 shots he faced in relief.
Chicago went 0 for 7 on the power play as Toronto scored once on six chances with the man advantage.
Toronto is off until Wednesday when they host the Lake Erie Monsters for their ninth meeting of the season. The Marlies lead the season-series 4-3-1.
The Marlies are now 1-3-1 against the Griffins and will play them three more times before the seasons through
The Marlies are 20-9-4 at the Ricoh Coliseum
If the playoffs started today, the Marlies and the Rochester Americans would be the only two clubs from the North Division to make the playoffs
Kenny Ryan played against the Griffins but was a healthy scratch against both the Admirals and the Wolves
In three games since returning from the ECHL Jussi Rynnas has stopped 54 of 58 shots with his only loss coming in a shootout
Rynnas and Ben Scrivens have combined for six shutouts this season. Mark Owuya also has one for a team-total of seven
Mike Zigomanis currently has a five-game point streak that includes two goals and eight points
Juraj Mikus leads the Marlies with a plus-18, which is good for 11th in the AHL