Mar 4, 2022

Arttu Ruotsalainen’s second goal of the game with 21 seconds remaining in overtime capped a three-point night and his third straight two-goal outing to lead the Rochester Americans (27-20-3-2) to a 3-2 come-from-behind win over the Belleville Senators (24-21-1-0) in the first of back-to-back meetings between the two teams Friday at CAA Arena.


Rochester 0 1 1 1 -- 3
Belleville 0 1 1 0 -- 2


                                                                               GAME SUMMARY  PHOTO GALLERY


The contest was the 23rd all-time meeting and fifth this season between the North Division rivals. Rochester has points in seven of its last 12 games while Belleville, which entered the contest 7-3-0-0 in its last 10 contests, suffered its first defeat beyond regulation.


Ruotsalainen tallied his third straight two-goal outing and eighth multi-point effort since Jan. 1 as he factored in on all three Rochester goals, earning the primary assist on the Amerks’ first of the night before scoring back-to-back goals. Over his last 27 games since the turn of the New Year, the Finnish forward has tallied 27 points on 12 goals and 15 assists, including three straight multi-goal games for the first time in his AHL career.


Linus Weissbach booked his 10th tally of the campaign while Brett Murray, JJ Peterka and Jimmy Schuldt all recorded assist in the overtime victory. Jack Quinn returned to the lineup after missing the previous 17 games due to injury and recorded a team-high four shots.


Goaltender Aaron Dell stopped 31 of the 33 shots he faced to improve to 8-3-1 on the season. In 10 of his 13 appearances this season, he has made 25 or more saves while also averaging 30 shots-against.


Belleville’s Cole Reinhardt and Andrew Agozzino both scored in the overtime loss while goaltender Filip Gustavsson (4-3-1) suffered the defeat in his 10th appearance of the season.


Just 45 seconds after the Senators took their second lead of the contest, Rutosalainen stole the puck inside the far blueline and carried it the length of ice before flipping a shot over the glove of Gustavsson to even the score at 2-2. As the Finnish forward carried the puck into the offensive zone, he shielded the defenders away from his body and his stick before roofing a shot under the crossbar 4:14 into the third period.


The teams drew penalties later in the third but neither could capitalize on the man-advantage and the overtime period was required to determine a winner.


The Amerks maintained much of the play in the opening portion of the extra session, but Quinn and Murray’s attempted were both denied by Gustavsson.


Belleville nearly had a breakaway in the last 40 seconds of overtime, but the outlet pass was just out of the reach of the skater and Dell pushed the puck into the corner for Peterka. In one motion after getting the puck, the rookie produced a quick pass to Schuldt in the neutral zone.


Schuldt turned up the ice and pushed the puck forward to Ruotsalainen, who was coming up the ice with speed out of the defensive zone. Ruotsalainen raced in-behind a Senators skater before firing home the overtime-winner into the upper corner with just 21 seconds remaining.


Over his last three games, Ruotsalainen has tallied six goals and two assists for eight points while helping the Amerks to two wins.




In the opening period, neither team found the scoresheet despite Belleville firing 10 shots in the opening 20 minutes while the Amerks did not get their first until the 8:26 mark.


The contest remained scoreless until the midway point of the middle period as Reinhardt capitalized on a loose rebound from Del Zotto and Logan Shaw.

Prior to Reinhardt’s eighth tally of the season with 10:43 left in the frame, after collecting the puck atop the left point and with bodies in front of Dell, Del Zotto fired a shot off the end boards. The puck banked off the boards and directly onto the stick of Reinhardt, who tucked it in-between Dell’s left leg and post for the first goal of the night.


Near the end of the stanza and a face-off win inside the defensive zone, Murray sprung Ruotsalainen free with a pass as he sprinted through the center of the ice. Eventually, Weissbach collected the puck from Ruotsalainen and stopped after crossing the opposing blueline. His seemingly innocent shot through traffic caromed off the stick off a Belleville defenseman and in for his 10th goal of the season.


Weissbach becomes the third Amerks rookie this season to reach double digits in goals, making Rochester one of just three teams to have three rookies reach the 10-goal mark, joining Charlotte and Toronto.


The two clubs went into the intermission break even at 1-1 before Belleville grabbed a one-goal lead 3:36 into the stanza.


Rochester countered back with a pair of Ruotsalainen goals, including the final one late in the overtime period to complete the 3-2 win.


The Amerks go for the weekend sweep as the same two teams square off for the second time in as many nights on Saturday, March 5 at CAA Arena. The rematch gets underway at 7:00 p.m. and will be carried live on The Sports Leader 95.7FM/950 AM The Fan Rochester as well as AHLTV.





Reinhardt (8), Agozzino (15)


Weissbach (10), Ruotsalainen (11, 12 – OT GWG)

Gustavsson – 18/21 (OTL)


Dell – 31/33 (W)










Back to All