Charles Lavigne sometimes has to wait between starts, and after a relatively long wait for a start, the Brampton Battalion netted 4 thrid period goals for a come-from-behind victory over the Rangers at Lavigne's expense. Perhaps Lavigne could be criticized for not coming up with the big stop, but at the same time the Rangers themselves struggled, and failed to finish off one of the weaker teams in the Eastern Conference. Now only week's later, Lavigne and his teammates had a shot at a little revenge. Charles Lavigne picked up the start inbetween the pipes for the Rangers against the Battalion and a chance at a little revenge for both the young netminder and the team infront of him that struggled immediately after the Christmas break before the return of some of the team's biggest stars along with additions of Steve Downie and Matthew Martello. With the reinforcements and some reinstored pride with the team now competing for the top spot in the conference.
The Battalion found themselves behind the eight-ball
early in this one. Mike Duco scored his 10th of the season on an
early power play to give the Rangers a 1-0 lead. John Hughes and
then Tomas Stryncl followed up with a pair of overlapping penalties putting
the Battalion in more peril, but Patrick Killeen, whom was very impressive
in the pre-season against the Rangers managed to hold the fort and prevent
the Rangers from jumping out to what could have very well been an insurmountable
lead. Killeen, the 16-year-old rookie that afforded the Battalion
the luxury of bringing utilizing Bryan Pitton as a starter without acquiring
a more experienced backup as many teams have done in desperation this season
with the flush of many of the league's top netminders from 2005-'06.
After running up their totals on the shot clock, the Rangers struck twice
late in the period. Peter Tsimikalis snapped in a feed from Henderson
and 14 seconds later Victor Oreskovich beat Killeen to give the Rangers
a commanding 3-0 lead. That third goal seemed to spark the Battalion,
rookie forward: Conor O'Donnell seemed like a man on a mission on the ensuing
faceoff, he took the puck over the Rangers' line made a few moves and then
using the defender as a screen beat Lavigne through the five-hole.
In all the two teams combined for three goals in 28 seconds late in the
Despite another barrage of shots in the direction of the Brampton net, the Rangers' second straight period where they directed 17 shots at Killeen, the one goal by Conor O'Donnell appeared to have turned the tide a little in the favour of the Battalion, that combined with some timely stops by the Brampton netminder kept at least an illusion that the Battalion might have an opportunity to score yet another come-from-behind win over the Battalion. Those hopes and dreams were dashed after a series of Battalion penalties late in the period. First, Ken Peroff chipped the puck into the crowd and soon afterwards Kevin Henderson scored on the power play. And with the Battalion already struggling, it might have been the straw the broke the cammels' back. Problems were only further compounded when another pair of overlapping penalties led to a Steve Downie tally on the power play.
In the third period, Nazem Kadri became the sixth Ranger to score, the Rangers' first-round draft pick netted his 6th of the season while skating alongside Downie as the lines were in the midst of a change. Waterloo native Kyle Sonnenburg wrapped up the scoring, during a late third period power play. For the second time in two road games, Steve Downie was the game's first star, he led the charge with 4 points, including a trio of assists, each while playing with different linemates, displaying his versatility, a trait that probably made him very sought after at the trade deadline- amongst other things. The announced crowd was just shy of 3,000, a very strong showing for the Battalion who currently sit 9th in their conference. The victory for the Rangers was their 5th straight and third on a three-day weekend.