Rochester’s Brett Murray stands in front of Laval goalie Cayden Primeau on Wednesday. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Amerks’ season ends with triple OT loss: ‘An extremely special group’

ROCHESTER – The Americans battled adversity and beat long odds for weeks, eking into the Calder Cup Playoffs on the last day of the regular season before beginning their deepest and most memorable postseason run in 18 years.

They rallied to win games, earned four overtime victories and triumphed in a do-or-die Game 5 against a top seed.

So when the Amerks dropped the first two games on the road against the Laval Rocket in ... Read the full article

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen hasn’t played since April 29. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Amerks’ Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen nearly over injury, focused on consistency

ROCHESTER – Out of his element, up in the stands watching his Americans teammates compete in the Calder Cup Playoffs, goalie Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen sometimes feels a little jittery.

“I think I’m 10 times more nervous watching it upstairs than when I’m in the goal,” Luukkonen told the Times Herald on Wednesday after the Amerks prepared for Game 3 of the AHL North Division final at Blue Cross Arena. “So that’s the tough part of it.”... Read the full article

Alex Tuch grew up rooting for Buffalo. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu

After special season in Buffalo, Sabres’ Alex Tuch wants to reach higher level

BUFFALO – Nearly seven months later, the novelty of playing for the Sabres, the team he passionately rooted for growing up, hasn’t worn off for winger Alex Tuch.

In the back of his mind, Tuch had hoped an opportunity to join the Sabres would materialize someday, perhaps at the end of his career. Then on Nov. 4, the Vegas Golden Knights sent him to Buffalo as part of the blockbuster Jack Eichel trade.

Tuch, ... Read the full article

JJ Peterka has been a force for Rochester in the postseason. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochster Americans

Top Sabres prospects, AHL role players contributing to Amerks’ playoff success

The Rochester Americans just won their second Calder Cup Playoff series, and winger Jack Quinn, the AHL’s top rookie, hasn’t scored a goal.

Injuries have sidelined goalie Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen and defenseman Mattias Samuelsson, two of the Buffalo Sabres’ other top prospects, the entire postseason.

On Thursday, the Amerks, who eked into the playoffs, defeated the top-seeded Utica Comets 4-2 and clinched the North Division semifinal without their injured captain, Michael Mersch, a 26-goal ... Read the full article

Utica’s Nolan Foote scores a first-period goal on Rochester goalie Aaron Dell on Tuesday.

Amerks fall to Comets, can’t close out series: ‘Wanted to finish it off now’

ROCHESTER – In opening up a series lead and putting the Utica Comets on the brink of elimination from the Calder Cup Playoffs, the Americans hadn’t seen the best out of the AHL powerhouse.

The top-seeded Comets only showcased flashes of their slick regular-season form throughout the first three games of best-of-five AHL North Division semifinal. In a do-or-die scenario Tuesday, you figured they would come out roaring.

Well, in Game 4, the Comets gave ... Read the full article

JJ Peterka (77) and Mitch Eliot celebrate a Rochester goal on Sunday. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres prospect JJ Peterka becoming dominant presence with Amerks

ROCHESTER – JJ Peterka could be one-and-done in the AHL. The Buffalo Sabres prospect just enjoyed the greatest offensive campaign in a teenage season since 1976. Over the weekend, the German winger was the most dynamic player in the Calder Cup Playoffs, recording five points, including a hat trick, in two Americans wins.

After a 28-goal, 68-point regular season, the excitement and pressure that accompanies postseason hockey has helped Peterka transform into a dominant presence.... Read the full article

Rochester’s Lukas Rousek beats Utica goalie Akira Schmid on Sunday. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Sabres prospect Lukas Rousek growing comfortable with Amerks

ROCHESTER – Considering the Americans boast one of the AHL’s deepest forward groups, it’s easy for rookie winger Lukas Rousek to be overshadowed.

In center Peyton Krebs and wingers JJ Peterka, Jack Quinn and Arttu Ruotsalainen, they possess four of the AHL’s top young talents.

Sean Malone and Michael Mersch each cracked the 20-goal mark. Brandon Biro, Mark Jankowski and Brett Murray all spent time with the Buffalo Sabres this season.... Read the full article

Arttu Ruotsalainen celebrates his overtime goal Sunday. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Arttu Ruotsalainen secures another Amerks OT win, puts Comets on brink

ROCHESTER – In his brief time playing with Peyton Krebs, winger Arttu Ruotsalainen has learned he must always be ready for the Americans center to adroitly feed him the puck anywhere on the ice.

“He’s an incredible player and he sees those passing lanes that others can’t see,” Ruotsalainen said Sunday after converting Krebs’ slick feed on the power play 1:39 into overtime, securing another wild 4-3 win and a 2-1 series lead against ... Read the full article

Buffalo prospect Jack Quinn has learned playoff hockey is intense. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

After dynamic season, Sabres prospect Jack Quinn adjusting to playoff hockey

ROCHESTER – Right now, winger Jack Quinn acknowledged he’s frustrated. In the Americans’ first three playoff games, opponents neutralized the slick Buffalo Sabres prospect, holding him pointless.

How significant is that? Well, in establishing himself as one of the AHL premier talents this season, Quinn never went more than two games without recording a point.

“As an offensive player, we all want to produce and score,” Quinn said following Thursday’s practice at Blue Cross Arena. ... Read the full article

Peyton Krebs was a difference-maker for Rochester on Wednesday. ©2022, Micheline Veluvolu, Rochester Americans

Back from Sabres, Peyton Krebs buoys Amerks to dramatic overtime win

ROCHESTER – When the Sabres assigned Peyton Krebs to the AHL following a successful 48-game stint in Buffalo, they probably hoped the center would be an offensive catalyst for the Americans in his first taste of playoff hockey.

Sure enough, after a slow start, Krebs helped the Amerks complete a furious three-goal, third-period comeback in Wednesday’s dramatic 4-3 win overtime win against the Belleville Senators before a raucous crowd of 6,044 fans at Blue Cross ... Read the full article