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Monsters Double Up Grand Rapids 4-2 In AHL Preseason Action

WINDSOR, ONTARIO – Cleveland’s Lake Erie Monsters, proud affiliate of the NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets, defeated the Grand Rapids Griffins on Saturday at the WFCU Centre in Windsor, Ontario by a final score of 4-2 in the second of back-to-back AHL preseason clashes between the two teams.

With the win, the Monsters wrapped up the 2015 preseason with a 1-1-0 record in the wake of a 5-1 Friday loss to the Griffins at the BGSU Ice Arena in Bowling Green, Ohio.

The Monsters stormed to a 2-0 lead early in the first period on consecutive even-strength scores, from Alex Broadhurst and Derek Deblois respectively, before the Griffins drew within one thanks to an Alden Hirschfeld tally at 10:30, assisted by Marek Tvrdon and Martin Frk.

Fresh off a one-goal performance for Columbus on Friday in Buffalo, Monsters center Lukas Sedlak pushed the Lake Erie lead to 3-1 early in the second period, when the Czech center took advantage of a miscue by Griffins goaltender Tom McCollum and poked his first of the preseason into an empty net at 3:10 of the frame.

In the third, the Griffins cut the Monsters’ lead to 3-2 when Frk supplied a power-play goal at 14:12, assisted by Tvrdon and defenseman Scott Czarnowczan, but Lake Erie hung tough down the stretch, and thanks to an Oliver Bjorkstrand empty-netter at 18:15, assisted by T.J. Tynan, skated away winners by a 4-2 final score.

In his first preseason start, Lake Erie’s Anton Forsberg made 21 saves to claim victory for the Monsters while McCollum took the loss for Grand Rapids despite a 33-save performance.

Next up for the Monsters, it’s the 2015-16 regular-season opener vs. the Rochester Americans with the opening faceoff set for 7:05 p.m. on Friday, October 9th at Blue Cross Arena in Rochester, New York.

Matt Loede has been a part of the Cleveland Sports Media for over 21 years, with experience covering Major League Baseball, National Basketball Association, the National Football League and even high school and college events. He has been a part of the Cleveland Indians coverage since the opening of Jacobs/Progressive Field in 1994, and spent two and a half years covering the team for 92.3 The Fan, and covers them daily for Associated Press Radio. You can follow Matt on Twitter HERE.

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