For the third time in franchise history, the Cleveland Monsters are playoff-bound.
Courtesy of a 5-1 win over the Toronto Marlies at Coca Cola Coliseum in Toronto and a Belleville Senators loss to the Rochester Americans Sunday, the Monsters earned their return trip to the Calder Cup Playoffs in the American Hockey League.
The Monsters (37-29-8, 84 points) and Senators (37-31-3, 82 points) entered Sunday tied in points, but when Belleville lost its home finale against Rochester, the door opened for Cleveland to get into the postseason. All the Monsters needed to claim their third-ever postseason berth was one point in an overtime/shootout loss or win of any kind.
After a scoreless first period, the Monsters scored three times in the second. Center Zac Dalpe got the scoring started just 20 seconds into the second period, and after Toronto, Cleveland needed just 45 seconds to go back in front for good when veteran forward/alternate captain Mark Letestu tallied his 21st goal of the season.
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