Western Conference Rallies for Win In AHL All-Star Skills Competition
PROVIDENCE, R.I. - The Western Conference AHL All-Stars staged a furious comeback and pulled out a thrilling 12-11 victory over their Eastern Conference counterparts in the 2013 Pepsi AHL All-Star Skills Competition at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center on Sunday evening.
The West’s goaltending trio of former Manchester Monarchs netminder Barry Brust, Petr Mrazek and Justin Peters combined to stop the last 14 East attempts in the H&R Block Breakaway Relay, allowing the Western Conference to complete the rally from what was a 7-2 deficit through four of seven events.
Peters, of the Charlotte Checkers, earned the CCM Top Goaltender award for the night by stopping 17 of 19 shots on the night. Peters was perfect in both the breakaway relay and the Pepsi Pass and Score event (three saves).
Brayden McNabb of the Rochester Americans became the fifth player in the Skills Competition’s 18-year history to crack triple digits in the CCM Hardest Shot contest, winning the event with a blast of 101.8 miles per hour. Matt Fraser of the Texas Stars took the crown in the Pepsi Accuracy Shooting event, breaking four targets in five tries.
The East had stormed out to its early lead on the strength of Portland Pirates defenseman Chris Summers’ record performance in the CCM Fastest Skater event. After the Houston Aeros’ Jason Zucker set a new event record with a lap of 13.550 seconds, Summers bettered that mark with a time of 13.324 seconds.
The East also earned points in the Sher-Wood Puck Control Relay as the Syracuse Crunch’s Mark Barberio and the Providence Bruins’ Trent Whitfield won their individual heats, and in the EA SPORTS NHL 13 Rapid Fire event as the East’s three netminders combined for 23 saves on 30 West shots.
The Western Conference squad will go for its second consecutive sweep when the 2013 Dunkin’ Donuts AHL All-Star Classic continues on Monday night (7:00 p.m. EST) with the annual AHL All-Star Game. Check theahl.com for air times and channels along the AHL All-Star Classic television network.