BINGHAMTON – The Binghamton Devils couldn’t tie the game late in a 6-5 loss to the visiting Syracuse Crunch inside Floyd L Maines Veterans Memorial Arena on Saturday night.
The Devils grabbed the lead early in the first with Josh Jacobs’ fourth goal of the season just 1:35 into the game. Winding up in front of the blue line, Jacobs blasted the puck past Spencer Martin. The goal gave the Devils a 1-0 lead with assists from Ryan Schmelzer and Brandon Baddock.
Syracuse quickly answered by tying the score at one 6:01 of the first frame. Alexander Volkov’s one-timer bounced off the shoulder of Evan Cormier and slid just under the crossbar for his third of the season. The goal by Volkov was his third of the year, unassisted, to even the score 1-1.
Binghamton picked up a power-play goal of their own when Joey Anderson registered his 12th goal of the season. Nick Merkley brought the puck down the ice and slid a pass over to Brett Seney. Following the connection, Seney fired a shot that was deflected by Martin and finished by a tap in from Anderson. Credited with the assists on the Devils play that came at 8:08 in the first were Anderson and Merkley.
The Devils extended their lead to two with 9:39 remaining in the first. Colton White sent a pass up to Merkley who fired the puck into the back of the net from the right-wing circle. White and Seney logged the assists and Binghamton took a 3-1 lead.
The Crunch brought it back within one with just over a minute remaining in the action-packed first period. After a turnover by the Devils, Dennis Yan fired the puck over the left shoulder of Cormier for his ninth of the year from Otto Somppi and Daniel Walcott.
Syracuse tied the game up after another turnover with just 4.9 seconds left in the first. Volkov brought the puck down the right side and elevated a shot over Cormier’s shoulder for his second of the night, unassisted, and the game was tied 3-3 after one period of play.
Just 19 seconds into the second period, Mikhail Maltsev put the Devils back on top. Chris Conner brought the puck down the ice, ripped a quick shot that popped up off the pads of Condon and a waiting Maltsev out in front tapped it in. Conner and Anderson tallied the assists on the play to give the Devils a 4-3 lead.
Syracuse tied it up again with 7:40 remaining in the middle frame. Taylor Raddysh blasted a shot that hit the post and slid right into the back of the net. Mathieu Joseph and Devante Stephens recorded the assists on the second period goal to tie the game 4-4.
Following a high-sticking call that landed Merkley in the penalty box, the Crunch grabbed its first lead of the game. Volkov earned a hat trick with Syracuse’s fifth goal of the night after flipping the puck past Cormier off a pass from Cory Conacher. The play came with 5:07 remaining in the second and Conacher and Boris Katchouk collected the assists. Binghamton trailed 5-4 to start the third.
Syracuse extended their lead to two with 9:37 left in the third period. Starting with a Devils turnover, Volkov picked it up and poked a pass behind him to Ross Colton, taking Cormier by surprise. Colton was able to rocket one into the back of the net for the 6-4 Crunch lead and Volkov logged the sole assist on the play.
With the net empty late in regulation, Nathan Bastian scored to get the Devils back within one goal, 6-5. That held up as the final score as Cormier stopped 26 of 32 in the loss.
The Devils are back home next Saturday as they host the Laval Rocket at 7:05 p.m. Fans can arrive and enjoy Happy Hour specials and LIVE music from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. on the concourse between Section 19 and 20. Also, take advantage of $5 24-ounce Labatt draft beer!. Tickets are available by calling or texting “TICKETS” to 607-722-7367.
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