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Published: Sunday, 11/3/2013 - Updated: 9 months ago

Walleye a strong force, Toledo a 3-1 winner on ‘Star Wars’ night

BY MARK MONROE
BLADE SPORTS WRITER
The Stanley Cup gets a smooch from  Shari Hartman of Holland, Ohio. The hardware was on display before the Walleye game on Saturday. The Stanley Cup gets a smooch from Shari Hartman of Holland, Ohio. The hardware was on display before the Walleye game on Saturday.
BLADE/ANDY MORRISON Enlarge

The Walleye bounced back from a lackluster performance on Friday with two quick goals in the second period to snap a two-game losing streak on Saturday at the Huntington Center.

Toledo scored twice in the middle period on goals from rookie Marek Tvrdon and captain Kyle Rogers and went on to drop Kalamazoo 3-1.

Walleye forward Trevor Parkes had a goal and two assists.

The Walleye (3-2-1) had lost 6-4 at Kalamazoo (1-3-0) on Friday night.

PHOTO GALLERY: Click here to see more photos from the game

“We were coming off two tough losses,” Parkes said. “It's great to come back and win one here at home.”

Coach Nick Vitucci said his team rebounded nicely from a poor effort Friday.

“It's was important because we were junk. We were garbage,” Vitucci said. “We stressed work ethic. When you compete and battle, things will come. I couldn't be happier with our performance from start to finish.”

Toledo’s Kevin Lynch flattens Kalamazoo’s Brandon Martell in the first period. Toledo’s Kevin Lynch flattens Kalamazoo’s Brandon Martell in the first period.
BLADE/ANDY MORRISON Enlarge

Toledo goalie Mac Carruth (3-1-0) made his second consecutive start. He finished with 25 saves before a sellout crowd of 7,680. The rookie lost the shutout with 1:10 left.

“The only thing that matters really is getting in the win column,” Carruth said. “I felt good. The boys played well in front of me for a full 60 minutes. We had to have a short memory from. I had a rough night [on Friday]. The guys deserved to win both nights.”

Both teams wore Star Wars-themed jerseys that were auctioned off for charity after the game. The Stanley Cup and other NHL trophies also were on display.

Tvrdon scored on a long slap shot just as Toledo's power play expired early in the second period. Toledo took a 1-0 lead on assists from Travis Novak and Parkes.

It was the first professional goal for Tvrdon, a 20-year-old rookie from Slovakia. He was assigned to Toledo from Grand Rapids of the American Hockey League on Tuesday.

Rogers gave Toledo a 2-0 lead as his shot to the short side somehow squeezed by Kalamazoo goalie Jordan Binnington (27 saves). It was Rogers' first of the season.

“Rog just needed one like that,” Parkes said. “He's had so many chances. The monkey's off his back now.”

Parkes added a power play goal with 5:41 left on assists from Alden Hirschfeld and Jason Lepine.

“I'm getting a lot of ice time and I try to do whatever I can to help this team win games,” said Parkes, who now has five goals and four assists in six games.

Carruth made a good stop on a solo breakaway to keep it scoreless midway through the first period. He followed that with a snap glove save late in the period. In the third he made a good pad save to keep the shutout intact.

“He's solid, big, and competes and battles,” Vitucci said. “It's great to have him right now. He plays with a lot of confidence.”

Kalamazoo's Ludwig Blomstrand ruined the shutout bid in the waning moments of regulation.

It was the second of 13 meetings between the teams. The Walleye play the Wings more than any other team this year. Toledo went 5-4-4 against Kalamazoo last season.

FISH TALES: Walleye F Emerson Clark has been suspended indefinitely for an obscene gesture he made to the crowd in Kalamazoo on Friday night. He was out on Saturday and is out Sunday. Further discipline will be announced next week. The gesture was caught on video as Clark made his way to the locker room after being issued a game misconduct penalty late in the contest. ... Toledo was without G Jared Coreau who was recalled to Grand Rapids on Friday. Coreau was 0-1-1 in his two starts for the Walleye. Toledo signed G Eric Levine, who has not play in a game as a pro, as an emergency backup. Levine played at Robert Morris University. … Matching fighting penalties were called on Toledo's Dan Weiss and Kalamazoo's Justin Taylor after a brief scuffle ensued.

Contact Mark Monroe at: mmonroe@theblade.com, 419-724-6354 or on Twitter @MonroeBlade.



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