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Lock Monsters Tie Springfield
by Alex Pufhal
The Lowell Lock Monsters didn't get a win tonight but they did continue their unbeaten streak. They have not lost since losing to New Haven on the 17th.

AHL player of the week Oli Jokinen opend the scoring at 1:23 of the first, with his 3rd goal of the year. Dean Malkoc knocked home his first goal of the year at 3:23 of the 2nd with assists to Sean Haggerty and Yevgeny Namestikov.

Haggerty then netted his 3rd of the season at 18:40 of the 2nd with assists from Mike Kennedy and Dane Jackson.

Chris Schmidt scored at 3:47 of the 3rd to tie the game. Springfield's Robert Esche made 34 saves taking his record to 1-1-2, Marcel Cousineau made 36 stops improving to 5-1-1.

2,209 witnessed the game tonight, the two teams travel to Springfield on Friday night at 7:30. LW Ryan Huska and D Jeff Libby made their Lock Monsters debuts tonight.

Lowell Sun:

Nothing special to the Monsters
Thursday, October 29, 1998
Sun Staff

LOWELL -- On one of those rare nights in the rough-and-tumble world of pro hockey where a team could actually play pure hockey, the Lowell Lock Monsters almost forgot how.

In an AHL game in which just eight minor penalties were whistled -- three in the first 50 minutes -- the Lock Monsters had to settle for a 2-2 overtime deadlock with the Springfield Falcons in front of a turnout of 2,209 last night at the Tsongas Arena.

The tie extended Lowell's unbeaten streak to four games (3-0-1).

"This is my second year as a pro," said former University of Michigan star Warren Luhning, who scored the first Lowell goal and just missed netting a game-winner near the end of regulation. "And it seems every game is dominated by special teams.

"It was nice to play five-on-five."

But the Lock Monsters all too often played nervously, as if they expected to be boarded, slashed, high-sticked, or mugged at any moment, and they needed a sharp 36-save effort from goalie Marcel Cousineau to escape with a point.

"I'm still looking for the perfect game," said coach Frank Anzalone. "We're playing about 38 good minutes right now, but it's coming around.

"We can be rock solid for 11 minutes and then be Swiss cheese for the next six minutes," he added. "AHL hockey is all about momentum swings. It's fun, entertaining, and scary all at the same time."

The Falcons led 1-0 just 83 seconds into the game after Olli Jokinen put a rebound behind Cousineau, and they could have quickly been ahead by three goals were it not for his superb goaltending.

"Cousineau is the major reason we've had such a good homestand," said Anzalone. "He has given us a chance to win every game, and that's all you can ask of your goaltender."

The Lock Monsters came back with a pair of second-period goals by Luhning at 3:32 and Sean Haggerty at 18:40 to take a 2-1 edge. But the third period was characterized by a number of missed opportunities.

After having been held to six shots in the second period, Springfield outshot Lowell 8-0 in the opening minutes of the third period and tied the game at 3:47 when Cousineau couldn't find a loose puck at his feet. Chris Schmidt jammed it into the cage.

The Lock Monsters went on a power play two minutes later, and defenseman Mike Gaul was twice perfectly set up for goals. But he tipped a feed by former UMass Lowell star Craig Charron wide to the near side, then fanned on another pass through the crease with Springfield goalie Robert Esche helpless both times.

Gaul set up Luhning with a pass through the crease from the opposite direction on another power play with three minutes left in regulation, but Esche was able to block the shot.

"I got good wood on it," said Luhning, "but the goalie got his pad on it. Maybe I should have stopped before shooting."

Each team had a power play in overtime but failed to cash in.


Lawerence Eagle-Tribune

Springfield rallies to tie Lowell

By John McLaughlin

Eagle-Tribune Correspondent

LOWELL -- The Lock Monsters may have put in some overtime, but they still haven't turned in a full night's work.

''We played really good for about 38 minutes,'' said Lowell coach Frank Anzalone, whose club lost a one-goal lead in the third period and had to settle for a 2-2 tie against Springfield last night.

''That's better than the 22 minutes we put in against New Haven, but it's still not good enough. We're still fighting to put together that total game.''

The Lock Monsters missed the early part this one, as Springfield punched in a goal just 1:23 into the game to take the quick lead.

Springfield continued its initial onslaught on Lowell goalie Marcel Cousineau, who had to turn aside four more shots, including a point-blank effort by Falcon center Chris Schmidt, to keep his team in a game that was less than three minutes old.

Lock Monster center Craig Charron nearly evened the score seven minutes in, drilling the puck off the post to the left of Springfield goalie Robert Esche.

The second period proved much better for Lowell, which pulled even thanks to some determined work from left wing Sean Haggerty.

With his linemates making a change, Haggerty chased the puck deep in the Falcon zone and wreaked havoc, finally forcing a turnover for Lock Monster defenseman John Namestnikov.

Namestnikov found winger Warren Luhning alone in front of Esche, and Luhning banged home the equalizer 3:32 into the second stanza.

The rest of the period was fairly uneventful, one penalty and no fights, until the waning moments.

Haggerty gave the Lock Monsters their first lead of the game just 1:20 before the break, finishing off a feed from fellow winger Mike Kennedy.

Haggerty, named the number one star for the second straight game, beat Esche between the pads to make it a 2-1 Lock Monster lead heading into the final frame.

The lead was short-lived, however, as Springfield fired the first seven shots of the third period, connecting on its seventh.

Falcon center Chris Schmidt had two straight cracks camped right in front of Cousineau, and made the second one count with 16:13 to play in the game.

The Lock Monsters had the only other true scoring chances late in the game on a power play, one each by Haggerty and Luhning, but Esche was equal to the task.

The overtime, during which each team had a power play, produced no real scoring threats.


Thursday, October 29, 1998
Falcons still locked up on road, by Fran Sypek, staff writer

LOWELL - The Falcons haven't wandered very far from The Nest this season, but the road has been anything but kind for them.

The Lowell Lock Monsters, the American Hockey League's newest team, kept the Falcons winless on the road with a 2-2 tie last night befor 2,209 at Tsongas Arena.

The Falcons fell to 0-3-1 on the road. And they could've easily been 0-4 if it weren't for two clutch saves late in the third period by rookie goaltender Robert Esche.

"He saved our bacon," Falcons defenseman Brad Tiley said. "Goaltending has been the best part of our game."

The Lock Monsters were on a power play when Esche made terrific saves on Sean Haggerty and Warren Luhning, who both scored earlier in the game. The Falcons also killed a Lowell power play during overtime.

The good news for the Falcons is their next two games are at home, where they are undefeated (2-0-1) at Springfield Civic Center, known as The Nest. The Falcons will play host to the Lock Monsters tomorrow night, and the Saint John (New Brunswick) Flames Saturday afternoon.

Ollie Jokinen, the AHL Player of the Week, and Chris Schmidt scored for the Falcons. Jokinen extended his scoring streak to five games.

Schmidt, with assists from Barry Nieckar and Rob Murray, tied the score 2-2 with 3 minutes, 47 seconds left in the third period.

Schmidt fired a shot that was stopped by Marcel Cousineau. There was a scramble in front of the crease and the Lock Monsters thought Cousineau had covered the puck long enough to get a whistle. But the puck squirted out to Schmidt, who banged it in.

Haggerty snapped a 1-1 tie with 1:20 remaining in the second period. Mike Kennedy set up the goal by forcing the puck away from defenseman Richard Lintner.

The turnover enabled Kennedy and Haggerty to break in alone on Esche. Kennedy dished off to Haggerty, who fired a wrist shot through Esche's pads to break the tie.

The second period was a sharp contrast to the first period, which belonged to the Falcons. Lowell oushot them 12-6, and responded with a better physical effort than they did in the first period.

"We forgot to hit during the second period," Falcons coach Dave Farrish said. "That took us right out of our game."

The Lock Monsters tied the score 1-1 at 3:32 of the second period when Luhning scored on assists from Craig Charron and Haggerty.

The Falcons let Luhning camp out in front of the crease, and he was able to knock a Haggerty pass by Esche.

The Falcons played their best first period of the season. They dominated the opening 20 minutes, but they had only a goal by Jokinen to show for their effort.

The Falcons had the Lock Monsters on the run for most of the period. They outshot them 17-11, and only some clutch saves by Cousineau keeping the game close.

Jokinen's goal came on a rebound. Radoslav Suchy received a pass from Tavis Hansen and rang a shot off the right post. Jokinen was in position to bang in the rebound to give the Falcons a 1-0 lead at 1:23 of the first period. It was Jokinen's third goal of the season.

DATE: 10/28/98
OFFICIALS: Degrace, Demers ATT.: 2,209
1 1:23 Springfield Oli Jokinen (3) Radoslave Suchy Tavis Hansen
2 3:32 Lowell Dean Malkoc (1) Sean Haggerty Yevegeny Namestikov
2 18:40 Lowell Sean Haggerty (3) Mike Kennedy Dane Jackson
3 3:47 Springfield Chris Schmidt (3) Barry Nieckar Rob Murray


GOALS 1 2 3 O T
1 0 1 0 2
0 2 0 0 2
Robert Esche SPR 65:00 36 34 1-1-2
Marcel Cousineau LOW 65:00 38 36 5-1-1
SHOTS 1 2 3 O T
17 6 14 1 38
11 12 11 2 36

1 15:48 Lowell Vladimir Orszagh Charging
2 7:59 Springfield Richard Linter Holding
3 5:31 Springfield Brad Tiley Holding
3 10:01 Springfield Joe Dziedzic Roughing
3 10:01 Lowell Zdeno Chara Roughing
3 15:01 Springfield Sean Gagnon Elbowing
O 1:26 Springfield Sean Gagnon Cross-Checking
O 3:55 Lowell Vladimir Chebaturkin Holding

Three Stars of the Game (Selected by Alex)

1. Marcel Cousineau Lowell
2. Robert Esche Springfield
3. Sean Haggerty Lowell