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Game Recap: Solar Bears Quiet Thunder in 5-3 Win

Sunday, March 20th
Game Recap: Solar Bears Quiet Thunder in 5-3 Win

March 20, 2016

ORLANDO, Fla. – The Orlando Solar Bears (30-24-3-5), proud affiliate of the NHL’s Toronto Maple Leafs and AHL’s Toronto Marlies, recovered from a first period deficit to close out their weekend series with a 5-3 win against the Adirondack Thunder (35-23-2-4) in front of 6,117 on Sunday night at the Amway Center.

The Thunder opened the scoring when Greg Wolfe used a cross-ice feed to set up Ryan Constant in the high slot, and the defenseman snapped the puck through the pads of Ryan Massa at 7:05.

The Solar Bears responded a little over a minute later when T.J. Foster sent a pass from the right circle into the slot, allowing Rylan Schwartz to redirect the puck past Drew Fielding at 8:11.

Orlando took the lead shortly afterward when Brady Vail scooped up a loose puck at the hash marks and drifted to the left circle before ripping a shot above Fielding’s blocker at 9:40.

Rory Rawlyk extended the lead for the Solar Bears at 17:38 after Vail moved the puck at the blueline to the right circle for Eric Baier, who hit Rawlyk for a pass at the opposite circle for the back door tap-in.

The Solar Bears carried the offense into the second stanza, as Chris Bradley broke in on a 2-on-1 with Erik Bradford and wristed the puck through the five-hole of Fielding just 34 seconds into the frame for his first professional goal and second point in as many nights. That prompted the Thunder to replace their starting goaltender for the second straight evening, as Mavric Parks took over in between the pipes.

Luke Curadi replied for Adirondack after the puck rolled between the circles and the defenseman fired a shot past Massa at 13:16.

Midway through the frame Greg Wolfe had a breakaway chance for the Thunder but Massa raced out from his crease to poke the puck away from the oncoming forward.

Orlando regained its three-goal edge in the third period on the power play, as Brenden Miller dished the puck to Denver Manderson at the left face-off dot for a one-timer that beat Parks stick side at 11:35.

The Thunder managed a late goal with Parks pulled for an extra skater while already on the man advantage, as Peter MacArthur found the back of the net at 19:21.

Massa earned the win with 37 saves on 40 shots against for his fourth consecutive victory in as many starts; Fielding took the loss with five stops on nine shots against in 20:26 of action.

NOTES:

  • With the win Orlando (68 points) moves ahead of Atlanta (67 points) for ninth place in the Eastern Conference with two games in hand. The Solar Bears are four points back of the Elmira Jackals (72 points; idle) with three games in hand for eighth place and a spot in the 2016 Kelly Cup Playoffs.
  • Bradford’s assist on Bradley’s goal extended his point streak to seven games (2g-5a).
  • Rodewald’s assist on Vail’s goal extends his point streak to five games (3g-5a).
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