Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Happy Wednesday!











It's another week. Here's what's happening....

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The Tampa Bay Lightning are holding on to flickering playoff hopes these days, but as long as there's life, they'll keep on battling.

The Bolts were 1-3-0 in the past week. Last Thursday, Buffalo built a 4-0 lead and cruised to a 6-2 win. Steve Downie and Vincent Lecavalier(PPG) scored in the third period for Tampa Bay, Antero Niittymaki stopped 22 shots. Attendance was 16,868.

On Saturday, Lecavalier's goal at 6:54 on the first was all the offense the Lightning could muster, as Washington skated to a 3-1 win. Niittymaki made 25 saves.

Sunday, Downie put the Bolts on top 6:04 into the game, then a Steven Stamkos second period power play goal brought Tampa Bay within one, but it wasn't to be, as those stinkin' Florida Panthers won 5-2. Mike Smith made 35 saves. Attendance was 14,831.

Last night, a Marty St. Louis wrister at 4:12 of the second period gave the Lightning a 1-0 lead. Two late goals 18 seconds apart put Carolina on top through 40 minutes at 2-1, before Downie became just the fourth player in the last 13 seasons to score 20 or more goals while also collecting over 200 penalty minutes in a season(Chris Gratton, Keith Tkachuk and Theo Fleury were the others), as he tied the game with a power play goal. Marty St. Louis then stepped up his game, nearly scoring in the final moments of regulation, then scoring 29 seconds into overtime, giving Tampa Bay the 3-2 win. Niittymaki stopped 27 shots, as the Lightning broke a five-game slide with just their third win in their past 15 games. Attendance was just 13,009.

Tampa Bay, with a record of 29-32-12 for 70 points, trails Boston by 8 points in the race for the final Eastern Conference playoff spot, with just nine games remaining in the regular season. The Lightning travel to meet the Bruins tomorrow night(7:00p.m. EDT on 620 AM WDAE and Sun Sports), then head to Buffalo on Saturday(7:00p.m. EDT on 620AM WDAE and Sun Sports), Columbus next Tuesday(7:00p.m. EDT on 620AM WDAE) and then head to Pittsburgh next Wednesday(7:30p.m. EDT on 620AM WDAE and Sun Sports).

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Tampa Bay Rays are 14-7 and hold the best spring record in the American League. Yesterday, shortstop Jason Bartlett was 3-for-4 with 3 runs scored and 2 RBI, powering the Rays past Toronto 5-3. Bartleff also hit a pair of solo homers, in the 4th and 6th innings. He also stole two bases.

The San Francisco Giants are an NL best 16-6.

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Because of a gathering of tall guys who can't skate, the Spokane Chiefs were forced to open their first-round playtoff series with two guys at Portland. It mattered little, as the Chiefs skated to two wins, 5-4 last Saturday and 4-2 the next night. Game three is tonight in Spokane, with games 4 and 5 in Spokane on Friday and Saturday. Game 6 will be back in Portland on Monday, the 29th and if game 7 is needed, it will be in Spokane next Wednesday. All remaining games in the series start at 10:00p.m. EDT.

In the other first-round WHL playoff matchups, Moose Jaw has a surprising 3-1 lead over Calgary, Brandon is up 3-0 on Swift Current, Saskatoon is up 2-0 after two straight shutouts of Red Deer, Kootenay leads Medicine Hat 2-1, Tri-City is up 2-1 on Chilliwack, a pair of overtime wins have put Vancouver up 3-0 on Kamloops and 5 is the lucky number, as that's what it's taken to win in the Everett-Kelowna series, with Everett holding a 2-1 lead in the series.

Click the link to the right in the upcoming action section for the upcoming schedule in the WHL.

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In the USHL, Green Bay, Cedar Rapids and Indiana have clinched playoff spots in the East, while Waterloo(5 games left) is holding onto 4th, 6 points ahead of a surging Team USA(4 games left) and 8 points ahead of Chicago(6 games left). Youngstown has been eliminated.

In the West, Omaha, Fargo and Sioux Falls have clinched playoff spots. Tri-City(4 games left) leads Sioux City(4 games left) by just one point. Des Moines and Lincoln have been eliminated. Tri-City has road games with Omaha and Lincoln on their schedule, with home games still to play against Des Moines and Sioux Falls. Sioux City has home games yet to play with Chicago, Waterloo and Lincoln, plus a road game against Omaha. The regular season ends on Saturday, April 3rd.

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My lovely bride has had three job interviews this week. We're very hopeful one of those will produce a job offer.











Jimmy, Snoopy and Smoke continue to be the main stars of the Meissner entertainment committee. Jimmy is apparently cutting more teeth, as he has been a bit cranky/fussy lately. But, he remains the happiest toddler in town and we love him very much!

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That's it for this week. Y'all have fun now, ya hear?!?!

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I hope you like 'em

My CRC Connections

Jimmy's Eighth Birthday!

Countdown to Beaver Football

Countdown To Saskatchewan Roughriders Football

Countdown to Tampa Bay Buccaneers Football

Countdown to Tampa Bay Lightning Hockey