Marlies dealt first home loss at hands of IceCaps

Photo Credit: Christian Bonin/

They say there’s no place like home, and for the Toronto Marlies, they haven’t had a chance to experience home in quite a while. That all changed tonight, though, as Ricoh Coliseum was once again filled up with fans while they took on the St. John’s IceCaps. Home ice advantage didn’t play out the way they figured it would, though, as the blue and white dropped local points for the first time this year in a 2-1 defeat.

The Marlies started the game off on a high note, though for a few seconds, the referees didn’t notice. With just three and a half minutes elapsed in the first period and Brett Lernout in the box for the IceCaps, a play initiated by Brendan Leipsic led to Kerby Rychel taking the puck into the slot and pulling it back out 

The lead held throughout the first period, but a pair of IceCaps forwards had no interest in keeping it that way. Seven minutes into the second period, Max Friberg set up Markus Eisenscshmid, and less than ten minutes later the duo performed the inverse, giving the IceCaps captain his third goal of the year and the away team a 2-1 lead.

Toronto put the pressure on throughout the third period, calmly outshooting their opponents in a valiant effort to restore balance to the scoreboard. They got the opportunity to open up the action with two and a half minutes to go when Viktor Loov and Sven Adrighetto took offsetting minors with two and a half minutes to go and pulled Antoine Bibeau for the goal to make it a de-facto powerplay. It certainly helped their cause, but nobody was able to beat Yann Danis, who dialed himself in to make 26 saves on the evening, including a gorgeous glove catch in the final seconds against Leipsic.

Also a focus point of the night was Josh Leivo, who was playing the last game of his conditioning stint. Heading into tonight, he had a few shots but no points to show for it. That continued tonight, as he had his share of scoring chances, but couldn’t convert anything into anything on the scoresheet. Adding to the cold streak was a hooking penalty that cancelled out a powerplay in the third period. Who knows what decision the Leafs to decide to make, but if the choice is waivers, then not ending the stint on a high note probably boosts his odds of clearing.

The Marlies return to the ice tomorrow afternoon to take on the IceCaps once again. Puck drop is at 3 PM.