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Game Recap

Belleville Sens out-skate Marlies to earn franchise’s first Calder Cup Playoff victory

April 24, 2024

The Belleville Senators earned their first-ever Calder Cup Playoff victory in dominating fashion, out-skating the rival Toronto Marlies to a 3-1 win at CAA Arena on Wednesday night.

Toronto got a bit of luck and a fortunate bounce, to open up the scoring about three and a half minutes into the game. Marshall Rifai’s wrist shot from the point hit a leg and snuck past Mads Sogaard. But Belleville would get even about 13 minutes later when Zack Ostapchuk busted over the Toronto line and snapped a low shot past Dennis Hildeby to tie the game 1-1. The B-Sens controlled the play in the first period as well and outshot the Marlies 13-4.

Belleville nudged in front inside the opening minute of the second period, by way of a nice passing play between Garrett Pilon and Tyler Kleven. The veteran forward, Pilon, rushed up the left side and cut to the middle, then fed the puck back left for the rookie defender. Kleven went to the backhand and popped the puck upstairs on Hildeby. Ostapchuk would get on the scoresheet again about 10 minutes later feeding Currie who was able to put his first of the playoffs past Hildeby. The Senators again had the shot count in their favour in the period, with 15 to Toronto’s eight.

There was no scoring in the third, with Sogaard stopping six more shots and Belleville putting another 10 on Hildeby. The two teams will tangle again on Friday in Toronto, with Belleville having a chance to wrap up the series with a win.

Fast Facts:

  • #6 Donovan Sebrango picked up his first career AHL playoff point, with an assist, in his first career Calder Cup Playoff game.
  • #9 Angus Crookshank made his Calder Cup Playoff debut.
  • #10 Zack Ostapchuk made his Calder Cup Playoff debut and contributed a goal and an assist. He was named the game’s first star.
  • #17 Stephen Halliday made his Calder Cup Playoff debut.
  • #18 Josh Currie picked up a goal and an assist. He was named the game’s second star.
  • #21 Max Guenette made his Calder Cup Playoff debut and had an assist.
  • #22 Garrett Pilon chipped in an assist, along with three shots on net.
  • #23 Cole Reinhardt had a game-high four shots on goal.
  • #25 Tyler Kleven made his Calder Cup Playoff debut and scored his first career postseason goal.
  • #39 Jiri Smejkal made his Calder Cup Playoff debut.
  • #40 Mads Sogaard earned his first Calder Cup Playoff win, in his first game, stopping 17 of 18 shots he faced.
  • #45 Ryan MacKinnon made his Calder Cup Playoff debut.
  • #52 Nikolas Matinpalo made his Calder Cup Playoff debut.


Sound Bytes:

Belleville Sens forward Zack Ostapchuk on the win and carrying the momentum from a strong regular season finish, into tonight’s win:

“It was fun. Playoffs are always the best time of the year and I thought our team brought a lot of energy tonight, it was a good start to the playoffs. I think we’ve really nailed down our identity these last few games of the year. I think we played hard, we played fast and did what we needed to do.”

Belleville Sens forward Zack Ostapchuk on looking ahead to Game 2 on Friday.

“I think we’ve got to play the same way and even if we can crank it up a notch. I think if we bring the same effort and attitude into Friday’s game, I think we’ll be alright.”

Belleville Sens forward Josh Currie on being a part of the first playoff win in franchise history, despite being in his first year in Belleville:

“It’s special. Any time you can be a part of the first of something for an organization, it’s definitely a special moment. We definitely feel it in there, but the job’s not finished. We still need to get one more and that’s where our mindset is, but it’s definitely exciting, for sure.”

Belleville Sens forward Josh Currie on passing playoff experience along to the Senators younger players:

“You just tell them to enjoy it. This is the best time in hockey to be playing and just play your game because it’s no different. The intensity picks up a little bit, but just play your game, nothing changes and just enjoy it. I think the guys did a great job, everybody picked each other up, we’ve got a great group in there and it was fun to see.”

Belleville Sens goaltender Mads Sogaard on the fan support:

“It’s awesome. Every time we’ve been in Toronto we’ve always seen some Belleville shirts and heard them during the games. The support we get is unbelievable, especiallly the last little bit here has been the best I’ve seen in my time in Belleville, and it goes a long way. It’s something that means a lot to us as players, something that can pick you up on a night where you’re not 100% feeling it and it’s amazing to have that kind of support. It’s almost like having an extra body on the ice.”

Media Availabilities:

Up Next:

  • Calder Cup Playoffs First Round Game 2: Friday, April 26, 2024 – Belleville @ Toronto (7:00 p.m. ET – Coca-Cola Coliseum)
  • * Calder Cup Playoffs First Round Game 3: Sunday, April 28, 2024 – Belleville vs Toronto (3:00 p.m. ET – CAA Arena)
    *If necessary

Ticket info:

Tickets for Belleville Sens 2024 Calder Cup Playoff first-round home games are now on sale, via Ticketmaster or the Belleville Sens Ticket Hub. Fans can also purchase tickets by visiting the Belleville Sens Box Office at the Quinte Sports & Wellness Centre, which is open from Noon until 7:30 p.m. today, or by emailing

Fans with further questions about playoff ticketing, or those looking for information on premium seating or group tickets, can also email

Details on 2024-25 season seat memberships, 2024-25 Group Experiences or 2024-25 Business Elite memberships, are available via the Belleville Sens website, or by emailing

Follow the action:

Tonight’s game starts at 7:00 p.m. (ET) and can be seen on AHL TV, or heard free on the Belleville Sens Entertainment Network, with pregame coverage on both platforms beginning with David Foot and Brock Ormond, at 6:45 p.m. (ET), from the CAA Arena, in Belleville, Ontario.

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