Spirited comeback by Blackhawks falls short
By Ben Meyer-Abbott email@example.com October 22, 2011 11:24PM
The Hawks’ Marian Hossa celebrates after scoring a third-period goal Saturday at the UC. | Charles Cherney~AP
Colorado 1 2 1 0—5 Blackhawks 0 2 2 0—4
Blackhawks 0 2 2 0—4
First Period—1, Colorado, Stastny 2 (Quincey, O’Brien), 16:09. Penalties—O’Brien, Col (holding), 1:56.
Second Period—2, HAWKS, Frolik 1, :46. 3, Colorado, Jones 5 (Hejduk, Stastny), 7:41. 4, Colorado, Landeskog 3 (O’Reilly, McLeod), 13:25. 5, HAWKS, J.Toews 4 (Keith, Bolland), 19:05 (pp). Penalties—Winnik, Col (holding), 18:57.
Third Period—6, HAWKS, Mayers 2 (Leddy), 4:35. 7, HAWKS, Hossa 4 (Keith, Sharp), 14:33. 8, Colorado, Landeskog 4 (O’Reilly, Winnik), 18:12. Penalties—Hejduk, Col (slashing), 19:57.
Shootout—Colorado 1 (Hejduk NG, Duchene NG, Lindstrom G), HAWKS 0 (Stalberg NG, J.Toews NG, Kane NG).
Shots on Goal—Colorado 7-10-6-1—24. HAWKS 6-15-13-4—38.
Power-play opportunities—Colorado 0 of 0; HAWKS 1 of 3.
Goalies—Colorado, Varlamov 4-2-0 (38 shots-34 saves). HAWKS, Crawford 3-1-2 (24-20).
Referees—Paul Devorski, Dennis LaRue. Linesmen—Andy McElman, Bryan Pancich. A—21,328 (19,717). T—2:32.
Updated: November 24, 2011 8:36AM
The Blackhawks seem to have addressed a glaring flaw in their game from last season, but a new one might be emerging.
After putting themselves in a situation in which they repeatedly faltered last season, the Hawks rallied to take the lead after trailing heading into the second intermission.
But the Hawks surrendered a late goal before falling in a shootout in a 5-4 loss Saturday as the Colorado Avalanche extended their unbeaten start on the road.
“It was a good fight back and we would have rather had two [points] especially in regulation,” Patrick Kane said. “We were down by two, we got a big goal there to make it 3-2 and nice to tie and take the lead, but it’s tough to give one away.”
The Hawks failed to score for the second consecutive shootout after Viktor Stalberg missed, and Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane were stopped by Semyon Varlamov, who finished with 34 saves.
Joakim Lindstrom scored the only goal of the shootout to win it for the Avalanche, which are now 6-0-0 away from home.
“You’re obviously not going to [win] if you’re 0-for-3,” Kane said. “It’s something we need to be better at.”
The Hawks are 0-for-6 in shootout opportunities this season.
“It’s frustrating,” Joel Quenne-ville said. “I know I don’t like our approach. We’ve got to do something different.”
Quenneville was also upset at the Hawks’ defense, in particular on Gabriel Landeskog’s second goal of the game with 1:48 remaining in the third to tie the score at 4 when the Hawks turned a 2-on-4 into a breakaway goal for the 18-year-old.
“All four goals are cardinal sins how we defend or how we play situational plays,” Quenneville said. “All the plays that we talk about daily in how we play, we played them all poorly.”
Paul Stastny and David Jones also scored for the Avalanche. Stastny’s goal was the first allowed by Corey Crawford in the first period of a game this season.
“Every goal was directly our responsibility and we know how we have to play those situations and we can’t serve them up like we did tonight,” Quenneville said.
Duncan Keith, Andrew Brunette and Nick Leddy were all in the area of the puck on Landeskog’s tying goal.
“We should never have let them back in the game there when we got up one,” Stalberg said. “They got some bounces, and I don’t know how they ended up with a breakaway on a 2-on-4. It just kind of happened, but we still found a way to get a point out of it when that happened, and last year sometimes we lost those games there.”
But Quenneville didn’t feel the game-tying goal was a bad bounce.
“Bad bounce? No, bad play,” Quenneville said.
Michael Frolik, Toews and Jamal Mayers all scored for the Hawks as they battled back from deficits of 1-0 and 3-1 to eventually take the lead on Marian Hossa’s deflection of a shot by Keith 14:33 into the third.
The Hawks managed a meager 2-15-3 record when trailing after two periods last season, but have not looked out of it at any point this season — with all three losses coming by one goal or in a shootout.
“That’s a big difference from last year,” Stalberg said. “We’re finding ways to come back. We’re down two goals but we take the lead and fight back and take it to them. Overall, we’re pretty happy with how we played the last two periods of this game, but obviously we’re not happy with the outcome.”