Manousos Records First Win in 6-3 Syracuse Victory
By Owen Sienko
Syracuse, N.Y. -- The Syracuse Orange (6-9-3) swept their home-and-home series against the University at Buffalo Bulls (10-12-0) with a 6-3 victory on Sunday, January 12. The Syracuse Blazers AA Squirts attended the game and joined the players on the ice for the National Anthem as part of the club’s second Youth Hockey Day of the season.
With senior goalie Eric Parker out with an injury, the Orange rolled a three-man goaltending tandem of Nik Manousos, Jordan Edelstein, and Cal Stewart. While Edelstein and Stewart manned the bench, Manousos started in the first game of his career.
“I was just very excited to get going and get started,” Manousos said. “Obviously there are always some nerves with a first start on a new team, but the second I made a few saves and got settled I felt great.”
Undisciplined play throughout the game spelled out disaster for Buffalo, allowing Syracuse to bombard Bulls goaltender John Krause with 48 shots. Syracuse’s penalty killing woes did not evade them, but they minimized this problem by staying out of the box for the most part.
After struggling on Saturday, the Syracuse penalty kill passed an early trial just 1:38 into the game when forward Connor Preston took a roughing penalty. They would not be so lucky on the next one, though, as Buffalo’s William Schaffer capitalized on another Preston penalty just over halfway through the frame.
The Orange turned on the jets with back-to-back goals in the waning minutes of the period. With 1:23 remaining, senior captain Peter-Owen Hayward found himself on a breakaway and made no mistake sending it past Krause’s blocker. Then, 32 seconds later, Lucas Prestamo received a pass from Ryan Dowd and took the lead for his team.
The Bulls took the lead from the Orange early in the eventful second period with two unanswered goals, their first even-strength tallies of the series, courtesy of forwards Shane Tyrie and Jon Czeckowski.
Forward Colin Morrow struck back for the Orange on a feed from Syracuse point leader Lucas Prestamo at about the halfway mark to tie the game back up at 3-3.
Chaos ensued in the final minute of the second period.
With 1:04 on the clock, Buffalo’s Matthew Bevilaqua received a five-minute major penalty for slashing. Hayward capitalized on the opportunity 16 seconds later for his second goal of the night.
Following the goal, the Bulls bench seemed frustrated with the officiating and began throwing milk crates, water bottles and harsh words on the ice with 30 seconds left in the period. The shenaniganry earned the Bulls three minor penalties for unsportsmanlike conduct and delay of game, a game misconduct, and an ejection for Head Coach Grant Ledyard.
Syracuse enjoyed an almost four-minute two-man advantage to start the third period, but John Krause was on fire in net, carrying his team through the long penalty kill with an outstanding performance in net.
About halfway through the frame, Buffalo was assessed yet another major penalty when William Shaffer was ejected for kneeing. Tim Kalinowski used the opportunity to put the game away as a 6-3 victory for the Orange with two back-to-back goals at 7:23 and 5:18 respectively. Kalinowski said scoring those goals was a monkey off the whole team’s back.
“Honestly I didn’t wanna have to hear it from the rest of the team if we let all those major penalties go by without scoring so mostly I was just relieved,” he said.
When the Orange return to the ice, they will be skating two time zones away for a three-in-three weekend in Colorado.
“We’re all very excited. These types of trips are awesome because you’re with your teammates for four full days,” Kalinowski said. “I’m excited to get even closer with all of my teammates.”
Fans can tune in to the first game of the weekend at the team’s YouTube channel on Friday, January 17, at 8:00 p.m. MST.
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