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Game Recap

Del Zotto’s double not enough to help B-Sens past T-Birds

January 8, 2022

Michael Del Zotto scored twice, pacing the Belleville Senators in his return to the lineup Friday night at CAA Arena. Despite the extra offensive punch from the backend, the Atlantic Division-leading Springfield Thunderbirds improved their record in a 4-3 road victory.

Springfield opened the scoring just shy of the 7:00 mark on a goal by Peter Crinella. Andrew Agozzino tied the game, capitalizing on a power-play rebound at 17:27 of the first.

The second period was paced offensively with the man advantage as defenceman Michael Del Zotto recorded his first career AHL goal with a one-time blast from the point. Less than a minute later, Steven Santini tallied for the Thunderbirds with his own special team’s marker from the blueline. Just Forty-two seconds later, Del Zotto found the back of the net for the second time in the game. Sam Anas scored on yet another power-play at 13:03 to even the score at three apiece, capping off a highly entertaining second period.

Nathan Walker delivered the win, scoring at 7:01 of the third. The Australian netted the Thunderbirds’ seventh shorthanded marker of the season, beating Mads Sogaard on a breakaway with a high wrister over the glove.

Belleville was left looking for an equalizer in the end, with the goaltender pulled late but could not beat Charlie Lindgren again on the night.

Fast Facts

  • Mads Sogaard made 33 saves in his first start since December 5.
  • Michael Del Zotto recorded his first career AHL goal, two-goal game, and three point game.
  • Zac Leslie collected two assists for his second multi-point game of the season.
  • Rourke Chartier saw his five-game point streak and three game goal streak come to an end.

Sens on Special Teams: 

Power Play: 2/5 | Penalty Kill: 1/3

Sound Bytes:

Head Coach Troy Mann on the game:

“I thought it was a well-played hockey game. There were momentum swings for both sides. We had plenty of opportunities to score. It was nice to see the power-play come alive there was certainly some good movement and a couple of goals. It was unfortunate the game-winner came (against) on the power-play.”

“Overall, I thought there was good compete. We have talked a lot about if we can score three, we are going to win a lot of hockey games with our goals-against in the top ten in the league.”

Head Coach Troy Mann on Del Zotto:

“I think his mindset is in a really good spot right now. Obviously, any player of his ilk wants to be in the NHL, but he’s fit in nicely with our team. As long as he’s part of our squad here, I believe is going to contribute offensively and that’s what we expect from him. I thought he was excellent tonight.”


Box Score Highlights Troy Mann Scrum

On the Schedule: 

The Belleville Senators are back in action Saturday when they host the Springfield Thunderbirds. You can hear the game on the Senators’ Official Broadcast Partner 800 AM CJBQ or see it on AHL TV. Coverage begins at 6:50 p.m.