SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (Falcons Media) – The Springfield Falcons topped the Syracuse Crunch, 3-2, in overtime during a battle to lead the Northeast Division Sunday night at the MassMutual Center.
Denny Urban netted the game-winning goal 3:10 into overtime to give the Falcons 46 points and maintain sole possession atop the Northeast Division.
The victory moves the Falcons to 22-9-2-0 on the season and 3-2-0-0 in the eight-game season series with the Crunch. The Crunch drop to 20-8-4-0.
Falcons goaltender Anton Forsberg turned away 15 of 17 shots just hours after being reassigned to the Falcons from the Columbus Blue Jackets. Crunch goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 30 of 33. Springfield was able to convert on one of six power play opportunities with a power-play goal in the overtime frame. The team successfully killed all four Syracuse man-advantages.
The Falcons opened scoring early in the first period, but entered the intermission tied, 1-1, due to a late Crunch goal. Luke Adam lobbed the puck over Vasilevskiy that appeared wide, but caught the top right corner of the net and gave the Falcons a 1-0 lead just 39 seconds into the frame. Hubert Labrie and Dana Tyrell each grabbed a point for the assist.
The Crunch knotted the score with 5:12 remaining in the first period. Joey Mormina fired a shot from the left point off a feed from Dalton Smith. Forsberg made the save, but left the puck loose in the crease for Vladislav Namestnikov to shove across the goal line.
Syracuse took their first lead of the game with 2:28 remaining in the second period. However, the Falcons responded and evened the score less than a minute later. Yanni Gourde chipped a quick cross-slot pass to Mike Angelidis, who beat Forsberg glove side and gave Syracuse a 2-1 lead. Jonathan Marchessault earned credit for the secondary assist on the go-ahead goal.
Springfield was quick to even up the contest. Frederic St. Denis powered a shot from the right wing that was redirected by Jaime Sifers. The puck bounced off of Vasilevskiy’s pad and over to Adam to the left of the net. A quick rebound shot gave Adam his second tally of the contest with 1:43 remaining in the second.
A scoreless third period brought the Falcons into overtime for the fourth consecutive game. While on a 4-on-3 power play, Urban fired home a shot from the left circle off assists from Austin Madaisky and Adam to down the Crunch, 3-2.
The Falcons are back in action on Friday, Jan. 2 when they travel to face the Portland Pirates at 7 p.m.