Preview: Second Helping of the SensBy: Colin Peterson | Published: March 2nd 2019
March 2, 2019 vs Belleville Senators
The Manitoba Moose (27-25-3-2) finish off their six-game road trip in tonight’s rematch with the Belleville Senators (29-23-3-4) at 6 p.m. CT. Tonight’s game will be available on TSN 1290, moosehockey.com/listenlive/, the Moose App, and streamed live on AHLTV.
Manitoba enters tonight’s action feeling comfortable at CAA Arena in Belleville. Since the Senators moved in last season, the Moose have collected a win in each of the three games played there, including last night’s 3-2 overtime victory.
Friday’s gameday started off with some scrambling, when Eric Comrie was brought back to Winnipeg on an emergency recall. Ken Appleby was called up from Jacksonville to backup, with Mikhail Berdin stepping in for the start.
Berdin showed no ill effects, stopping 34 pucks including a penalty shot in overtime to record his sixth win of the season. The rookie netminder from Ufa, Russia has built up a 0.932 save percentage and 2.28 goals against average in 11 appearances this season. Four of Berdin’s 10 starts have gone beyond regulation time, where he has a record of 3-1.
It was Seth Griffith who secured the win shortly after the OT penalty shot save from Berdin. Griffith’s game-winner was his second in as many games and his second overtime goal this season.
Griffith has looked like a whole new player since coming back from the holiday break on Dec. 30. In the 28 games since, the native of Wallaceburg, Ont. native has taken over the team scoring lead thanks to scoring at a point-per-game rate (7G, 21A). Tonight’s game will be the 300th AHL contest of Griffith’s career, and with two goals in each of his last two game, it couldn’t come at a better time.
Jansen Harkins opened the scoring against the Senators on Friday and sits tied with Griffith for second on the team with 12 goals. One of the most impressive Moose stats this season has been the team’s record when scoring first. Manitoba has scored the opening goal in 29 games in 2018-19, and hold a record of 22-3-2-2 in those games. That works out to a 0.828 winning percentage when scoring first, the second-best rate in the AHL.
The Moose head home after tonight’s rematch. Manitoba’s next six games will all take place at Bell MTS Place, starting on Saturday (March 9) with the club’s Autism Awareness Game against Rockford. For tickets to all home games, head to moosehockey.com/tickets.