Jean-Sebastian Dea and Scott Wilson led the Rochester Americans (3-1-0-1) to a shootout as they each scored a goal with an assist, but a three-goal second-period for the Amerks wasn’t enough as the home team came away with a point in a 4-3 loss to the Cleveland Monsters (3-2-0-0) Friday at The Blue Cross Arena.
While Dea and Wilson each recorded their first multi-point outing of the campaign, Dalton Smith was credited with his first goal of the season in the second period for Rochester, which has earned seven out of a possible 10 points to start the season. Amerks netminder Andrew Hammond (3-0-1) made 16 saves in his fourth appearance of the campaign.
Cleveland forwards Nathan Gerbe (0+3) and Stefan Matteau (2+0) both contributed a multi-point game while Kevin Stenlund completed the scoring as he netted his first marker of the slate. Goaltender Matiss Kivlenieks stopped 28 of the 31 shots he faced in addition to denying all three Amerks shooters in the shootout.
With the game tied at 3-3 following regulation, the contest went into a five-minute, sudden-death overtime period. Both teams traded serval scoring changes during the extra session, including a pair of grade-A looks from Rochester’s skaters, but the goaltenders prevailed, forcing the shootout competition.
Unlike Sunday’s skills competition in Hartford, Tage Thompson was denied by Kivlenieks as was Dea and C.J. Smith while Gerbe found the back of Hammond’s net, giving Cleveland the extra point.
Following a scoreless first period, where Cleveland was held without a shot until the near the 4:00 mark of the frame, the two North Division rivals exploded for five goals in the middle stanza.
“While it was not the results we wanted tonight, it was a good night,” said Dea. “We can take a lot of good things from the game and we can build off it.”
Matteau opened the scoring just 2:11 into the second period but Rochester quickly tied the contest 25 seconds later as Dalton Smith redirected a Casey Nelson point-shot behind the Monsters’ netminder for his initial tally of the season.
Midway through the period, Cleveland again grabbed a one-goal lead, but Dea knotted the score at two goals apiece as he picked the top corner at the 10:17 mark from Zach Redmond and Wilson.
The Amerks rode the momentum from Dea’s second goal of the season as he won a face-off back to Wilson, who wasted no time in wiring a shot past the unsuspecting Cleveland goaltender nearly two minutes later to give the home club a 3-2 lead going into the final period of regulation.
“It’s one of those plays that even if I miss the net, the puck will still rim around the boards to our other D-man,” explained Wilson on his goal off the face-off win by Dea. “Oglevie did a great job of boxing the other forward and I just tried to get the puck on net.”
The game remained a one-goal affair until late in the third period as Matteau and Gerbe again teamed up to force overtime while on the power-play.
In the overtime frame, the two clubs, who combined for 16 penalties, exchanged scoring opportunities but the neither grabbed the extra point and the shootout soon followed.
Rochester elected to shoot first in the skills competition, but Kivlenieks stood tall as he made all three saves while Gerbe sealed the win for Cleveland as the lone goal-scorer in the opening round.
The Amerks close out the weekend with a 7:00 p.m. face-off against the Utica Comets on Saturday, Oct. 19 at the Adirondack Bank Center.