ALBANY, NY — Scott Timmins registered two goals and an assist and Adam Larsson contributed three helpers in the Albany Devils 5-2 victory against the Manchester Monarchs Saturday in front of 6,382 fans at Times Union Center. For the second straight night, the Devils knocked off a top-two team in the American Hockey League. On Friday, they defeated the first-place Springfield Falcons, 3-0.
“I said to the guys, ‘set the bar,’” said Head Coach Rick Kowalsky. “This is a good opportunity to see where we really hold up back-to-back.”
Timmins registered his eighth and ninth goals of the season and added an assist, giving him a season-high three points. Larsson, who was loaned from New Jersey Thursday, registered his fourth assist in just his second game. Kelly Zajac and Joe Whitney also scored and Brandon Burlon found the back of an empty net.
“We knew we had a tough weekend with some of the top teams,” Timmins said. “We just wanted to get back to basics and what we do best. After watching those games, it’s no secret what we have to do from here on to be successful.”
In goal, Keith Kinkaid made 21 saves on 23 shots for his 14th victory of the season. He improves to 14-6-1 with a league-best 2.07 goals-against average and a .920 save percentage.
Timmins opened the scoring, cashing in on a loose puck in front at 9:43 of the first period. After Manchester’s Nick Shore responded at 18:56, Zajac found the upper-left corner at 2:18 of the second period.
Timmins made the score 3-1 thanks to nifty passing by Matteau and Larsson on a fast break at 3:51.
The Monarchs got a goal back thanks to Brian O’Neill’s bar-down tally at 10:22, but before the end of the period Whitney used the left post for his team-leading 14th goal of the season at 16:29.
In the closing seconds, Burlon scored an empty-net goal with 44 seconds remaining.
Albany was outshot, 23-21, and went 1-4 on the power-play and 3-4 on the penalty kill. Manchester’s Jean-Francois Berube finished with 16 saves.
“We just crested the halfway point and these games — the intensity, the tight checking, the goaltending, blocking shots, the desperation, it’s just, honestly, this early, it’s going to be a long second half if all these games are like this,” Kowalsky said.
The Devils host the Hershey Bears Sunday for a 4 pm outing at Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Hall. Fans can follow the action online or on mobile devices at ahllive.com. Additionally, the game is available on 104.5 “The Team” ESPN Radio.