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CRUNCH DOWNED BY THUNDERBIRDS, 4-2

SYRACUSE, N.Y. – The Syracuse Crunch were downed by the Springfield Thunderbirds, 4-2, tonight at the Upstate Medical University Arena.

Despite rattling off 55 shots on goal, Syracuse fell to Springfield and moved to 18-12-2-2 on the season.

Crunch goaltender Matt Tomkins turned aside 22-of-25 shots. Malcolm Subban stopped 53-of-55 shots in net for the Thunderbirds. The Syracuse power play converted on 1-of-4 opportunities, while the penalty kill went 2-for-3.

The Thunderbirds opened scoring with back-to-back goals from Adam Gaudette to start the game. The first came at the 18:13 mark when a blocked shot ended up in the slot for Gaudette to sweep in while on the power play. Then, with just four seconds remaining in the frame, he beat Tomkins on a breakaway to double the lead.

The Crunch responded with back-to-back goals by Waltteri Merela in the second period. Sean Day skated the puck across the blue line and dropped a pass back for Merela to score with a wrister from the right circle at 8:01. Five minutes later while on the man advantage, he got a stick on the rebound from Jack Thompson’s point shot and fired it in to tie the game, 2-2.

Springfield went back on top just 2:11 into the final frame. Wyatt Kalynuk skated down the left side and netted a shot from the face-off dot to lock. Gaudette locked in a Thunderbirds victory when he hit the empty net late in the game to complete his hat trick.

The Crunch hosts the Cleveland Monsters tomorrow.

Single-game tickets and ticket packages for the 2023-24 season are on sale now and can be purchased in person at the Crunch office located inside the Upstate Medical University Arena at Onondaga County War Memorial at 800 S. State St. in Syracuse, by calling the office at 315-473-4444 or online through Ticketmaster. For the latest Crunch news, visit www.syracusecrunch.com or follow the club on Facebook (www.facebook.com/syracusecrunch), Twitter (@SyracuseCrunch) and Instagram (@syracusecrunch).

Crunchables: The Crunch have set new season highs with the most shots in a period (21) and in a game (55)…Waltteri Merela recorded his first two-goal game tonight.

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