Braden Holtby made 40 saves for the Hershey Bears on Sunday as they topped the Toronto Marlies 4-2. Holtby, who basically came out of nowhere and excelled in last year’s NHL postseason, has continued that strong play down in the AHL in 2012-13. Despite having a 5-6 record, Holtby owns a .925 save percentage this season with the Bears. Toronto outshot Hershey 42-19, but fell behind 4-0 and even with a late surge couldn’t level the score.
Owuya gets no help
Mark Owuya made his first start in seven games and stopped 15 of 19 shots, but in fairness to the Swedish goaltender, the Marlies defense was awful. One goal was an unfortunate bounce off a player in front, and the other three came on plays where a Bears skater was left completely uncovered in front of the net without a defender in sight. The Marlies D in this one had poor coverage and many times it was the forwards not tracking back and picking up the extra man.
Frattin keeps rolling
Matt Frattin got the scoring started for the Marlies and that now makes five goals in five games since his return from injury. A great sign for Leafs fans as he is skating well and it appears there are no ill effects from that injured knee.
Special teams not so special
The Marlies have been up and down all season and after winning six of seven, they have now lost three straight games. A big reason for the losing streak is the struggling Toronto power play. They haven’t scored on their last 14 opportunities with the man advantage, while opponents have converted 2-of-11 power play chances.
Fraser leads the way
Mark Fraser was one of the few signs of life for the Marlies in this one. He had a beautiful goal that came from a rocket of a slapshot and threw a couple of thunderous hits. He also added two shots on goal and five PIM.