The Belleville Senators let a late lead slip away in an overtime loss to the Rochester Americans on Saturday night.
It was the third time in the season series the two teams had played bonus hockey.
Belleville had an early flurry, with Colin White narrowly missing a back hand right in front, but couldn’t beat Adam Wilcox.
Rochester got on the board just past the 4:00 mark, when Kyle Criscuolo followed-up his own rebound, off a pass from CJ Smith on the rush, to make it 1-0.
The Amerks looked to make it 2-0 shortly after, but a long, fluttering wrist shot, that beat Danny Taylor was waived off, because of a high stick.
The B-Sens would even things in the final minute of the frame, in what’s become a bit of a trend for them, with Nick Paul pouncing on a power play rebound, for just his third of the season.
It was tied 1-1 after the first.
Each team would count one more in the second, with Belleville opening the period’s scoring 1:27 in on the power pay.
Chris DiDomenico dropped off a pass to all star Gabriel Gagne who slammed a hard shot upstairs on Wilcox to make it 2-1 Senators.
Danny Taylor stood tall in the period for Belleville making a number of saves, but got beat late in the frame, when he was screened on a long slap shot from Taylor Fedun, on the power play, after a blocked shot.
That power play goal tied the score 2-2, which is where it stood heading into the third period.
The B-Sens took a very early third period lead, after Gagne avoided a check at centre ice and Jim O’Brien picked up the loose puck, streaking in to beat Wilcox on the back hand, making it 3-2.
Belleville had a chance for some insurance midway through the frame, but couldn’t capitalize on a five-on-three power play.
The Amerks would make them pay with under 3:00 left in regulation, with Eric Cornel converting a rebound, following a Danny Taylor toe save.
Senators forward Nick Paul took a very late penalty, giving Rochester a four-on-three power play heading into overtime and Criscuolo knocked in his second of the night to win the game, just 22 seconds in.
B-Sens Head Coach Kurt Kleinendorst says it’s disappointing for the extra point to slip away from his group.
The coach added that with his team losing four in a row and still struggling with injuries, the all star break comes at a good time.
Forward Gabriel Gagne will make his first all star appearance in Utica this weekend and told reporters, he’s looking forward to the experience and to getting into the skills competition.
The Sens are off until next Friday when they begin a three-game road trip in Binghamton.
The’ll play Saturday in Bridgeport Connecticut and then next Wednesday in Rochester, before returning home Friday February 9th, to host the Toronto Marlies for the second time.
All games can be heard on 800 AM CJBQ.
You can click here to read the full box score from Saturday.