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SYRACUSE, N.Y. – The Syracuse Crunch fell to the Rochester Americans, 4-2, in their first preseason contest tonight at Blue Cross Arena.

After Rochester opened the scoring, Daniel Walcott and Shawn Element found the back of the net for the Crunch in the third period.

Goaltender Hugo Alnefelt stopped 14-of-16 shots in net for the Crunch before trading places with Evan Fitzpatrick halfway through the game. Fitzpatrick went on to turn aside 13-of-15. Devin Cooley earned the win stopping 28-of-30 shots. Syracuse went 0-for-3 on the man advantage, while Rochester was 1-for-5.

The Amerks opened scoring with three minutes remaining in the first period. Alnefelt made the initial save on Viktor Neuchev’s left-side shot, but the rebound kicked out Zack Metsa to chip into the back of the net.

Rochester doubled their lead halfway through the middle frame when Michael Mersch got his stick on the puck during a battle in the crease and swept it across the goal line. They made it a 3-0 lead five minutes later on the power play. Filip Cederqvist got a stick on Ethan Prow’s long right-point wrister to redirect the puck past the netminder.


The Amerks added another just three minutes into the third period. Olivier Nadeau centered a pass for Damien Geroux to score as he came skating down the slot. The Crunch finally got on the board at the 4:15 mark. Cooley stopped Emil Lilleberg’s left-point shot, but Walcott tracked down the rebound and sent it in. Just over a minute later, Element fired a wrister from the right circle that skipped over the goaltender and into the net. Despite the late goals, Syracuse was unable to rally back and Rochester took the win.

The Crunch return home to host the Utica Comets on Saturday for the preseason finale.

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 or follow the club on Facebook (, Twitter (@SyracuseCrunch) and Instagram (@syracusecrunch).


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