Moose Recap: Manitoba 3 vs. Grand Rapids 1By: Anthony Fusco | Published: April 7th 2023
- Leon Gawanke notched three points (1G, 2A) for Manitoba
- Ville Heinola posted two points (2A) for the Moose
- Arvid Holm ended with 22 saves and the Moose home victory
The Manitoba Moose (35-24-5-4) rematched with the Grand Rapids Griffins (28-33-4-4) on Friday evening at Canada Life Centre. Manitoba was coming off a 5-2 defeat at the hands of the Griffins the previous evening.
Manitoba opened the scoring 2:09 into the contest. Greg Meireles pulled up at the wall in the offensive zone and found Leon Gawanke trailing the play. The defenceman stepped in and wired a shot off the rush past John Lethemon. His 17th goal of the season tied the all-time Moose franchise record (AHL/IHL/St. John’s) for most goals in a single season by a defenceman. Both power plays got one opportunity to work in the opening frame, but neither side could break through. Arvid Holm ended the frame with seven stops, while Lethemon was called upon to make 10 saves.
Grand Rapids tied the contest on the power play at the six-minute mark of the middle frame. Jared McIsaac’s point shot was redirected by Carter Mazur on the way through and tumbled past Holm. The Moose restored the lead with a power play goal of their own. Ville Heinola fired a slap shot on goal, and Dominic Toninato swept the loose puck into the goal. Manitoba outshot Grand Rapids 11-10 in the second stanza and carried a 2-1 lead into the final 20 minutes of play.
Manitoba went looking for insurance in the third period and found another goal on the power play. With the Moose on a four-on-three advantage, Gawanke set up Jansen Harkins, who wired a shot past Lethemon from the high slot. As time ticked down, the Griffins called Lethemon to the bench in favour of the extra attacker on the power play. The Moose, despite being shorthanded late, held firm and prevented the Griffins from drawing any closer. Holm picked up the home win and ended the contest with 22 saves, while Lethemon was hit with the loss and made 29 stops of his own.
Moose Defenceman Leon Gawanke (Click for full interview)
“It was kinda similar to last night, with the big difference being the third period. I think that we came out pretty strong. They pushed back a little bit in the second. We stuck with it and kept our game the same. Obviously in the second intermission we talked about yesterday and I think everyone was on the same page. I don’t think they had too much in the third.”
- Leon Gawanke’s goal tied Brett Hauer for the most goals in a single Moose season by a defenceman (AHL/IHL/St. John’s)
- Gawanke recorded three points (1G, 2A) for his 10th multi-point game of the season
- Gawanke is the fifth Moose skater this season to crack 40 points
- Greg Meireles has two points (1G, 1A) his past two contests
- Ville Heinola tallied two points (2A) in the win
- It’s the 15th time this season the Moose have scored two or more goals on the power play
- Jansen Harkins leads the Moose with 22 goals on the season=