Heat slip by Marlies in Toronto to grab lead
By Cam Tucker, Vancouver Sun
May 2, 2012
The Abbotsford Heat got scoring from a rookie forward, a sophomore defenceman and a grizzled veteran, to go along with clutch goaltending from Danny Taylor.
All totalled, the Heat scored a 3-1 road victory Tuesday over the Toronto Marlies to take a 1-0 series lead in the best-of-seven American Hockey League Western Conference semifinal. The win makes it 11 in a row for the Fraser Valley franchise, dating back to the regular season.
Chris Breen's first goal of the playoffs at 8: 17 of the second period proved to be the winner. Now in his second full season with the Heat, Breen's goal - his first since Dec. 29 - came just over two minutes after Abbotsford successfully killed off a J.P. Testwuide minor for tripping.
Rookie Max Reinhart, the Calgary Flames third-round pick in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft who joined the Heat after the Kootenay Ice were eliminated from the WHL playoffs, opened scoring late in the first period.
Reinhart was the beneficiary of some good work around the net from linemates Greg Nem-isz and Hugh Jessiman, eventually lifting a loose puck over a sprawled-out Ben Scrivens for his first goal of the Heat's play-off run.
The Vancouver product now has three goals and four points in two games, regular season and playoffs, against the Marlies since being recalled from the WHL.
Guillaume Desbiens scored the insurance marker into an empty net with 1: 21 left in the third period.
His first goal of these play-offs, Desbiens slid the puck into a wide open cage from around the centre red-line.
It wasn't at all pretty, but what a goal it turned out to be, as the Heat withstood almost 20 minutes of pressure from a Marlies team desperate for the equalizer.
Toronto cut Abbotsford's two-goal lead in half just 1: 27 into the third period. Matt Frattin neatly deflected home a Joe Colborne centring pass to give the Marlies life.
Game 2 of the series goes Thursday (4 p.m. PDT) in Toronto.
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