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Acton scores winner as Marlies edge Barons

The Canadian Press

4/16/2013 9:49:34 PM

TORONTO -- Since joining the Toronto Marlies in February, goaltender Drew MacIntyre has been something of a revelation.

With 12 wins in 20 games since joining the team, the only thing missing in his time with the club is a shutout.

MacIntyre came within one minute and six seconds of getting that first shutout on Tuesday night as the Marlies hung on to beat the Oklahoma City Barons 2-1 on Tuesday night.

"I guess maybe I should care more because I never get them. They always find a way to get one in the third," MacIntyre said with a laugh. "I don't know how many times it's happened since I've been here. I guess maybe I should put more thought into them because they always find a way."

Will Acton's eighth goal of the season was the winner as the Marlies are now just a point away from their second-straight North Division title.

Acton was sprung into the Barons' zone with a long lead pass from Dylan Yeo, and beat goalie Yann Danis with a high shot at 10:56 of the third period.

"I was at the end of my shift and I thought, at all costs, don't lose it and if there's to get a chance just put it on net and see what happens," said Acton. I think their defenceman got a stick on it. That might have been why it fooled the goalie but hey, I'll take it."

MacIntyre held the Barons off the scoreboard until 18:54 of the third when Oklahoma City scored after the puck trickled in following a pileup in front of the Toronto net.

He wasn't to blame on the goal as he was taken out of the play with players from both teams lying in the crease. The goal was reviewed and it was eventually upheld -- much to the chagrin of the Toronto players and staff.

"You can talk to the referees about that one," said Marlies coach Dallas Eakins when asked on his take of the goal. "Another head-shaker for me. I'm just glad that it wasn't the tying goal."

Greg McKegg opened the scoring for Toronto (41-23-9) at 11:04 of the second period with his eighth goal of the season when he deflected defenceman Morgan Rielly's shot from the left point.

Winger Joshua Leivo, the Toronto Maple Leafs' third-round pick in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, picked up his first AHL point on McKegg's goal in his first game with the Marlies.

Acton's goal at 10:56 of the third period made it 2-0, and the Barons (37-25-11) made it close when Philippe Cornet was credited with his 15th of the season that spoiled MacIntyre's shutout bid.

MacIntyre made 30 saves for the Marlies and Danis stopped 30 shots for the Barons.

"I wasn't sure what we were going to get after all that travel," said Eakins, whose team was playing their first game back at home after dropping a pair of games on the other side of the country against the Abbotsford Heat over the weekend. "I know our guys were really rundown so after about the first five or six minutes I thought we really woke up and we were really engaged right to the very end."

Overall there weren't many quality scoring chances as most of the shots were kept to the outside.

The Marlies nearly opened the scoring with just under four minutes remaining in the first period when Mike Zigomanis fired a shot that hit the post.

Oklahoma City was given an opportunity right at the end of the second period when Acton was given a double minor for high-sticking, but the Barons failed to capitalize.

Notes: After the game, Eakins announced that centre Tim Connolly was going to be rested for the rest of the regular season with hip and hamstring injuries.