(Albany, NY) – A late third-period push by the Rochester Americans fell short of time on Saturday as the Amerks could not overcome a four-goal deficit and dropped a 4-2 decision to the North Division-leading Albany Devils at the Times Union Center. With the loss, Rochester falls to 0-2-0-0 in the season series with Albany and 7-11-0-1 overall.
Albany built a 4-0 lead before Mike Aviani and Evan Rodrigues scored within 1:23 of each other to cut the deficit in half. Tyson Strachan and William Carrier, who was one of three reassigned to the Amerks earlier in the day from the Buffalo Sabres, each recorded assists while goaltender John Muse made 26 saves on shots he faced in what was just his second start of the season.
John Quenneville led the way offensively for Albany with a three-point night (1+2) and Brian Gibbons tacked on a pair of assists for the Devils, who extended their winning to streak to three games and improved to 8-1-0-0 on home ice. Albany goaltender Ken Appleby was had 19 stops before seeing his shutout bid denied in the final 2:34 of regulation.
The first period was scoreless until just after the 17:00 mark, when Albany’s Petr Straka fired a shot on Muse that was deflected before being knocked in by forward Miles Wood for a 1-0 Devils lead. The power-play goal marked Wood’s third the season and second in as many nights.
With just over a minute left of play in the first, Cole Schneider and Rodrigues took consecutive penalties and it didn’t take long for the Devils to capitalize on the 5-on-3 advantage. Quenneville found Joe Blandisi, who fired it to the back of net for his fifth goal of the season with 10 seconds remaining in the opening frame.
Five minutes into the second, the Devils added to their lead. Vojtech Mozik fired a shot from the point, which was redirected off Blake Coleman for his fourth goal of the season. Later in the period, Gibbons sent a backhanded pass up the middle of the ice which found Quenneville streaking towards the net. Quenneville slipped past the Rochester defense and tallied his third point of the night, increasing Albany’s lead to 4-0.
Rochester mounted its comeback attempt with 2:34 remaining in the game as Aviani slipped one by Appleby to score his first as an Amerk. Just over 80 seconds later, Albany’s Reece Scarlett had control of the puck near his net, but stumbled and lost the puck to Rodrigues, who capitalized to bring the Amerks within a pair.
The Amerks pulled Muse for the extra attacker in an attempt to make it a one-goal game, but it would be as close as they would get.
Rochester closes out the month of November on the road as they travel to face the Utica Comets for the third time in 12 days on Wednesday, Nov. 30 at the Utica Memorial Auditorium. Game time is slated for a 7:00 p.m. start and will be carried live on The Sports Leader 95.7 FM/950 AM ESPN Rochester.
RCH: Aviani (1), Rodrigues (4)
ALB: Wood (3), Blandisi (5), Coleman (4), Quenneville (6)
RCH: Muse – 26/30 (L)
ALB: Appleby – 19/21 (W)
RCH: PP (0/5) / PK (4/6)
ALB: PP (2/6) / PK (5/5)