Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Suns Hockey Summary


GUTTER SNIPES 10, SUNS 9 (OT)

FRIDAY, MARCH 14

East Coast Gutter Snipes 3 4 2 1 10
Sun Valley Suns 5 3 1 0 9

FIRST PERIOD—(1) SV, Bryan Winkler 3 (Gunnar Gladics), 2:22, power play goal. (2) SV, Chris Warrington 8 (Jeremy Schreiber, Charles Friedman), 4:16. (3) SV, Friedman 4 (Schreiber, Winkler), 9:18. (4) East Coast, Igor Larionov (unassisted), 10:22. (5) SV, Jon Duval 3 (Schreiber), 10:37. (6) East Coast, Bernie Haffey (Reece Pacheco, Nick Sinerate), 12:30. (7) SV, Ivars Muzis 3 (Cody Lampl, Vilnis Nikolaisons), 15:02. (8) East Coast, Sean Haggerty (Andy Pearsall, Norton), 18:09, power play goal.

SECOND PERIOD—(9) SV, Nikolaisons 11 (John Stevens, Lampl), 0:54. (10) SV, Friedman 5 (Duval, Schreiber), 5:16. (11) East Coast, Bryan O'Connell (Bill Kelleher), 7:14. (12) East Coast, Larionov (Haggerty), 11:22, power play goal. (13) SV, Schreiber 5 (Friedman, Duval), 12:54, power play goal. (14) East Coast, O'Connell (Jay Snell, Kelleher), 17:32. (15) East Coast, Pat Walsh (Larionov, O'Connell), 19:47.

THIRD PERIOD—(16) East Coast, O'Connell (Pacheco, Kelleher), 1:21, hat trick goal. (17) East Coast, Haggerty (Larionov), 6:17, shorthanded goal. (18) SV, Lampl 12 (Stevens, Nikolaisons), 15:25, power play goal.

OVERTIME (5 minutes, 4-on-4)—(19) East Coast, Larionov (Norton, Simpson), 0:54, shorthanded, game-winning hat trick goal.

SHOTS ON GOAL—East Coast 15-13-12-2 for 42; Sun Valley 16-19-19-1 for 55.

GOALIES—East Coast, Bobby Farrelly (46 saves); SV, Ryan Thomson (32 saves, 6-3-0 record).

OFFICIALS—Referee, Jim Kimball; linesmen, John Heinrich and Bobby Noyes.

NOTES—With Spring Break and Jamie Ellison becoming a father for the second time, the Suns (wearing their black jerseys) were short quite a few players, like Ellison, Ryan Enrico, Paul Baranzelli, Adam Swain, John Miller, Jeremy Mylymok and Mike Hanson..... So, Suns forward lines for head guest coach Glenn Hunter and assistant coach John "Cub "Burke" were Cody Lampl-Vilnis Nikolaisons-John Stevens, Charles Friedman-Jon Duval-Jeremy Schreiber, Gunnar Gladics-Bryan Winkler-Chris Benson. The defensemen were Ivars Muzis, Eric Demment, Chris Warrington, Kris Webster and Trevor Thomas. Tony Benson was the back-up goalie..... Gutter Snipes forward lines for most of the weekend were Sean Haggerty-Igor Larionov-Reid Simpson, Bryan O'Connell-Bill Kelleher-Peter Smith, Nick Sinerate-Chris Dussault-Bernie Haffey. Defensemen were Jeff Norton, Pat Walsh, Reece Pacheco, Andy Pearsall, Jay Snell and former Suns skater Frank Salvoni.....

Leading the way for the Gutter Snipes was captain Jeff Norton, 42, a 6-2, 200-pound native of Acton, Mass. who played 797 NHL games from 1987-2002 for eight different teams, most prominently the New York Islanders, San Jose Sharks, St. Louis Blues and Edmonton Oilers. Norton played three years at the University of Michigan from 1984-87 and was a member of the U.S. Olympic hockey team at Calgary in 1988. Another prominent Gutter Snipes skater playing on Sun Valley ice was Sean Haggerty, 32, from Rye, N.Y. who played minor league hockey from 1995-2002 and ended up with the AHL Providence Bruins. Here for the first time was 38-year-old wing Reid Simpson, a 6-1, 210-pounder from Flin Flon, Manitoba who played for 9 NHL teams between 1991-2004 and also skated two seasons for Chekhov Vityaz in Russia from 2005-07, notching lopsided totals of 13 points and 506 penalty minutes in 77 games. Another newcomer was Bill Kelleher from North Reading, Mass., a senior for Dartmouth College in 1996 and the Big Green's second-leading scorer in 1993. He is still Dartmouth's seventh-leading all-time assists man with 76 in 115 games........

Fifth-year Suns goalie Thomson (38-12-0, 6-4-0 OT) has played in the goal in 11 of the last 13 Suns overtime games. The Suns are now 31-25-20 in 76 OT games over 33 seasons......

Gutter Snipes goalie Bobby Farrelly seems to be getting better between the pipes as he gets a little older. Farrelly, 50 in June, comes from Cumberland, R.I. and went to RPI on a hockey scholarship. He and his older brother Peter made their first feature film, "Dumb and Dumber," in 1994 and have since made movies like "There's Something About Mary," "Kingpin," "Shallow Hal," and "Fever Pitch." Tonight, Farrelly saved the game for the Gutter Snipes when he robbed Cody Lampl with his left foot on a near-certain goal just 13 seconds into the 4-on-4 five-minute overtime period. The winning goal came just 41 seconds later. The Suns had a 4-on-3 power play with Andy Pearsall in the box for hooking. Lining up for the Suns in the Gutter Snipes zone were Nikolaisons, Lampl, Demment and Schreiber. Killing the penalty for the Snipes were Larionov, Reid Simpson and Norton. For the Suns, Schreiber got the puck on the right point and let loose with a shot. Norton went down to successfully block the shot and then leg-whipped Schreiber in the same motion, bringing down the Suns defenseman, but there was no whistle. The puck came off the side boards and the only way Simpson could advance it the other way was with a hand pass. That's what he did, and it went out to Larionov. It turned into a breakaway and "The Professor" tallied the game winner, shorthanded....Hat trick scorer Bryan O'Connell played as a freshman at Castleton State in Vermont, but said the coaching staff was apparently looking for someone with more "juniors experience." He's now selling cars in Hanover, Mass. and playing with Farrelly's pickup hockey team whenever he can.

GUTTER SNIPES 9, SUNS 7

SATURDAY, MARCH 15

East Coast Gutter Snipes 3 5 1 9
Sun Valley Suns 3 2 2 7

FIRST PERIOD—(1) East Coast, Peter Smith (Bill Kelleher), 4:20. (2) East Coast, Frank Salvoni (Reece Pacheco, Bryan O'Connell), 4:58. (3) SV, Ivars Muzis 4 (Jon Duval, Jeremy Schreiber), 5:29. (4) SV, Eric Demment 7 (Charles Friedman), 8:26. (5) East Coast, Nick Sinerate (Chris Francione), 14:12. (6) SV, Trevor Thomas 1 (John Stevens), 17:24.

SECOND PERIOD—(7) SV, Demment 8 (Vilnis Nikolaisons), 3:37. (8) East Coast, Chris Dussault (Sinerate), 4:31. (9) East Coast, Reid Simpson (Sean Haggerty, Igor Larionov), 5:23. (10) East Coast, Kelleher (O'Connell, Francione), 5:40. (11) East Coast, Haggerty (unassisted), 9:31, power play goal. (12) SV, Ryan Enrico 11 (Demment, Jamie Ellison), 15:07. (13) East Coast, O'Connell (Jay Snell), 17:27.

THIRD PERIOD—(14) East Coast, Haggerty (Andy Pearsall, Simpson), 9:43. (15) SV, Duval 4 (Demment, Chris Warrington), 13:02. (16) SV, Nikolaisons 12 (Enrico), 14:13.

SHOTS ON GOAL—East Coast, 16-17-12 for 45; Sun Valley 11-13-18 for 42.

GOALIES—East Coast, Bobby Farrelly (1st period, 8 saves) and Dave Espley (2nd and 3rd periods, 27 saves); SV, Ryan Thomson (36 saves, 6-4-0 record).

OFFICIALS—Referee, Jim Kimball; linesmen, Curt Martin and Ajax Dempsey.

NOTES—Prior to tonight, the Suns and Farrelly's Boston squad had played three straight overtime games. Last year the Suns won the first meeting 5-4 (OT) and dropped the Saturday night game 7-6 (OT shootout)....

The Suns wore either #17 or the initials "MH" on their helmets in memory of Senior Hockey League player Mark Hutchison, who died earlier this winter after playing the game he loved at Sun Valley Skating Center......

Hockey players form a relatively small fraternity, so it was no surprise that virtually all of the Gutter Snipes players knew George Gund III during one of the intermissions. Gund, former San Jose Sharks owner and longtime Suns benefactor and supporter, was walking under the balcony during one of the intermissions, just as the Gutter Snipes came off the ice and went to their changing room. One by one, the Snipes said hello to the man they called "Mr. Gund."....

Nikolaisons, celebrating the first birthday of his daughter Aija today, said about the Suns season, "We had a few injuries that slowed us down a little and we didn't skate for three weeks, which broke things up. We struggled on the power play as well. It is what it is."......Suns forward lines were Ryan Enrico-Jamie Ellison-Vilnis Nikolaisons, Cody Lampl-Jon Duval-Charles Friedman, Cody Proctor-John Stevens-Trevor Thomas. The defensemen were Jeremy Schreiber, Ivars Muzis, Jeremy Mylymok, Chris Warrington and Eric Demment. Back-up goalie was Billy Cook.......

The Suns were 0-for-4 on the power play tonight and 3-for-10 for the weekend. East Coast was 1-for-2 tonight and 3-for-6 on the power play for the weekend...

The low total of weekend penalty minutes was Sun Valley 14 and East Coast 22...

After 18 games this season, the Suns all-time record in 784 games over 33 seasons is 546-209-29.....Top Suns scorer for the weekend was Jeremy Schreiber (1 goal, 5 assists), followed by Nikolaisons (2-3), Jon Duval (2-3) and Charles Friedman (2-3).....

Larionov (3-3) and Sean Haggerty (4-2) each had 6 points for the Snipes, and Bryan O'Connell led the way with 7 points......

For the second straight year, Suns fans and players marveled at the talents of center Igor Larionov, 47, of Russia, winner of three Stanley Cups and called by many the finest playmaker that the European game has ever produced. Diminutive at 5-9, 170 pounds, Larionov has often been compared to Wayne Gretzky for his situational skills and instinct. Suns wing Vilnis Nikolaisons of Latvia has said about "Iggy," "He is the best Russian player ever." One of the best passers of all time, Larionov was Russia's Player of the Year in 1988 as well as being a huge contributor to Olympic gold medals for the Soviet Union in 1984 and 1988. When the Iron Curtain fell, Larionov and Vyacheslav Fetisov were pioneers in breaking the barrier that had prevented Soviets from joining the National Hockey League. To this day, Larionov has said there has never been a better three-game series than the 1987 Canada Cup final won by Team Canada over the Soviet Union. A 27-year professional hockey player prior to his retirement from the NHL in 2004 at age 44, Larionov played 921 NHL games with 169 goals and 475 assists from 1989-2004. The skilled pivot was always at his best in the playoffs. He won the Stanley Cup with the Detroit Red Wings in 1997, 1998 and 2002—and carried the Cup on its first-ever tour of Russia in the summer of 1997. Nicknamed "The Professor," Larionov was the oldest player in the NHL at 41 when he scored the triple overtime goal that broke the Carolina Hurricanes back in the 2002 Stanley Cup final. He's an expert on wine, and has marketed his "Triple Overtime Shiraz" all over the world....

The last time the Suns lost two games in a row was March 31-April 1, 2006 at McCall, by 4-3 and 5-2 scores to the Mountaineers. The last time the local Town Team dropped two home games was March 10-11, 2006 to the Jackson Hole Moose by 4-3 and 5-3 scores.




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