Bjork, Mersch each record three assists in heartbreaking 7-5 loss to Toronto

Jan 14, 2023

Despite three-point efforts each from forwards Mason Jobst (3+0), Michael Mersch (0+3) and Anders Bjork (0+3), the Rochester Americans (19-12-1-1) allowed three goals in the final four minutes, including the go-ahead goal in the closing seconds of regulation, in a heartbreaking 7-5 loss to the first-place Toronto Marlies Saturday at The Blue Cross Arena.


                                                  GAME SUMMARY   PHOTO GALLERY    POST-GAME REPORT


Despite the loss, however, the Amerks have recorded points in five of the last seven meetings between the two teams dating back to last season. Overall, Rochester remains in third place of the North Division with 40 points, four points behind Utica, who the Amerks have two games in hand on.


Jobst scored his first-career hat trick while also setting new a personal-best in goals on the season (6) while Mersch and Bjork each registered three assists for Rochester. Defensemen Jeremy Davies (1+1) and Lawrence Pilut (0+2) both notched two points while Jiri Kulich (1+0) and Linus Weissbach (0+1) added one to complete the scoring.



Goaltender Malcolm Subban (9-3-0) saw his career-long seven-game win streak halted as he suffered his first defeat since Dec. 7. The netminder, who shows a 9-2-0 mark over his last 11 games, made 26 saves.


Toronto captain Logan Shaw (1+4) posted a career-high five points while Nick Abruzzese (1+2) and Joey Anderson (1+2) both logged three points each. Noel Hoefenmayer (1+1), Marc Johnstone (2+0) and Joseph Blandisi (0+2) all collected multi-point performances. William Villeneuve completed the scoring as he scored his second goal of the season during the second period.



Netminder Joseph Woll manned the pipes for the Marlies, improving to 10-0-0 this season as he made 28 saves.


Two minutes after Jobst complete his hat trick, Hoefenmayer buried a rebound past Subban to even the score at 5-5 with 3:58 left in regulation.



As the period was in its final 30 seconds, Anderson controlled the puck inside the Amerks zone. The forward drove through the center of the ice before eventually passing it to Shaw along the left wall. Shaw then dished a one-time feed across the zone for Abruzzese to blast past Subban to give Toronto its first lead of the contest with just nine seconds to play.


Anderson sealed the victory as he scored an empty-net goal from Mikko Kokkonen and Shaw.



In the opening period, neither team capitalized on its first power-play of the night, but they went into the intermission deadlocked at 1-1 as Kulich and Shaw scored their seventh and 13th goals of the season, respectively.


With the assist on Kulich’s goal, Weissbach has 15 points (7+8) over his last 18 games, including seven in the last seven games (3+4).



Following the break, the two clubs exchanged goals to begin the middle period as Jobst scored 19 seconds into the frame before Villeneuve answered back four minutes later.


Later in the period, Pilut began a transition play inside the Amerks zone and sent Bjork the puck through the center of the ice. Pilut sprinted to catch up to the play and received a return pass from Bjork. The Swedish defenseman fired a shot from the top of the circles, and as bodies poked for a rebound, Jobst pushed it across the goal-line at the 12:56 mark.



By recording his second assist of the contest, Pilut has a pair of two-assist games over his last three games.


Rochester doubled its lead just 35 into the third period as Davies rifled a shot from atop the point for his fourth of the season from Mersch and Bjork but Johnstone tied the game with his first and second goals of the season with back-to-back strikes.



The scoring frenzy continued as Jobst beat Woll once again 44 seconds after Johnstone’s second to make it a 5-4 Amerks lead.


Prior to tonight’s contest, Jobst’s last multi-goal outing came back on May 1, 2021, as he posted two goals and two assists as a member of the Binghamton Devils.



Much like the entire game, however, Toronto responded as they scored three goals in a span of 3:56 to flip a one-goal deficit into a 7-5 victory.


The Amerks close out their three-game homestand as they welcome back the Laval Rocket to The Blue Cross Arena on Wednesday, Jan. 18 for a 7:05 p.m. face-off. All of the action will be carried on The Sports Leader 95.7 FM/950 AM The Fan Rochester as well as AHLTV.


Storyline Stripes:

Anders Bjork and Michael Mersch each recorded three assists to extend their current point streaks to four and three games, respectively. Mersch now has 11 points (6+5) over his last eight games. With a point in four straight games, it’s Bjork’s longest point streak in the AHL since the 2018-19 campaign. In 21 of the last 25 meetings, the winning team has scored at least four goals dating back to the 2017-18 season.


Goal Scorers

TOR: L. Shaw (13), W. Villeneuve (2), M. Johnstone (1, 2), N. Hoefenmayer (10), N. Abruzzese (10), J. Anderson (14)

ROC:  J. Kulich (7), M. Jobst (4, 5, 6), J. Davies (4)



TOR:  J. Woll – 28/33 (W)

ROC:  M. Subban – 26/32 (L)



TOR: 33

ROC:  33


Special Teams

TOR: PP (0/3) | PK (2/2)

ROC:  PP (0/2) | PK (3/3)


Three Stars

1. ROC - M. Jobst
2. TOR - N. Abruzzese
3. TOR - L. Shaw

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