Crunch edged by Senators, 3-2

The Syracuse Crunch were edged by the Belleville Senators, 3-2, tonight at the Upstate Medical University Arena.

The loss moves the winless streak to six games and drops the Crunch to 5-7-2-1 on the season.

Goaltender Amir Miftakhov started in net for the Crunch and turned aside all five shots he faced before being relieved by Max Lagace six minutes into the game. Lagace went on to stop 14-of-17. Mads Sogaard made 38 saves on 40 shots between the pipes for the Senators. Syracuse went 1-for-3 on the power play and 1-for-2 on the penalty kill.

The Senators struck first while on the man-advantage 7:15 into the game. After Lagace made the initial save, the rebound was loose for Chris Wilkie to eventually send in during a scramble in the crease. Belleville doubled their lead three minutes later. The Crunch broke up an odd-man rush, but Cedric Pare followed behind the play and chipped the puck in.

Belleville added another one 5:11 into the second stanza when Jake Lucchini poked the puck off a defender’s stick and across the goal line.

The Crunch finally responded with a power-play goal at the 12:36 mark of the second period. Gabe Fortier left a drop pass in the slot for Gabriel Dumont to fire home.

Syracuse came back within one halfway through the third. Sogaard turned aside Jimmy Huntington’s shot, but the rebound came out for Fortier to score from the bottom of the left circle. The Crunch fired off 21 shots in the third period, but the Senators staved off a comeback and took the game.

The Crunch are back in action when they host the Lehigh Valley Phantoms on Friday.

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