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Griffins Can Improve Their Playoff Picture Tonight



sebastian cossa, Grand Rapids griffins,

The Grand Rapids Griffins play on the road (8 p.m. ET) against the Rockford IceHogs tonight needing just one point to clinch a first-round playoff bye and a berth in the Central Division semifinals.

One reason why the Griffins are enjoying an improved season is the play of Detroit Red Wings prospect goalie Sebastian Cossa. He continued his strong play Friday night by making 24 saves to beat the IceHogs 3-0 for his second shutout of the season. Cossa extended his streak to 19 consecutive games of earning at least one point for the Griffins. He hasn’t lost a game in regulation since Jan. 12. Cossa is 19-7-9 on the season with a 2.47 goals-against average.

“This was a great bounce back game,” said Grand Rapids coach Dan Watson. “He wasn’t overly great last game. But tonight, again I have said that several times in the past, having a good bounce-back game,  seeing the puck. challenging the shooter, being big around the crease. It’s good for him.”

The Griffins now own a home streak of earning at least one point in 19 consecutive games. The Griffins are now trying to tighten up defensively and working to be harder to play against in preparation for the playoffs.

Forward Jonatan Berggren, recently sent down by the Red Wings, scored his 24th goal of the season for the Griffins on Friday. Matt Luff and Carter Mazur assisted. Berggren has a nine-game points streak (15 points).

Prospect Amadeus Lombardi also picked up two assists in the game. The 20-year-old center, drafted in the fourth round, now has 24 points on the season.  Defenseman Albert Johansson, projected to play for the Red Wings next season, also had an assist.