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Crunch opens season with pair of wins

Palmieri hat trick highlights home opener

— Syracuse took control in the first period. On a power play opportunity, Bonino delivered a sharp pass in the slot to Palmeiri who hammered the puck past Jason Bacashihua that gave Syracuse a 1-0 advantage.

The Crunch maintained that pace, aggressively crashing the neutral zone as it paid off capitalizing on a scoring opportunity. Defenseman Matt Clark shoveled a pass to Rick Schofield, who almost lost control of the puck, but regained his composure, pounding it between the pipes at the 8:59 mark.

It only took 28 seconds later for the Phantoms to crash further into a downward spiral. Sean Zimmerman fired a shot from the left circle that was deflected by a Phantom player into the goal. At that point, the Crunch had an overwhelming 21-10 shot period and dominated in the time of possession.

In the second period, Adirondack narrowed the margin to 3-1 on an inauspicious power play goal. Deslauriers initially denied veteran finisher Denis Hamel, but the rebound glanced off forward J.F Jacques as it sailed into the net.

But any aspirations of a Phantoms comeback were quickly dashed by Palmieri, who patiently controlled the puck down into the lower right circle. After surveying what his options were momentarily, he then proceeded to blast in a shot through minuscule crease past Bacashihua with 4:47 remaining.

“Not many guys can do that,” said Holick of Palmieri’s shot. “He is a pure goal-scorer. I thought he competed real well tonight. He was in the pile and in the crease. We do not want him to be satisfied We want him to give a good effort every day.”

Syracuse closed out the final period in a decisive fashion. The Crunch outscored their opponent in all three quarters and never was challenged throughout the course of the game. The Crunch was five-for-six on penalty kills and took 39 shots to the Phantom’s 36.

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