Another goose egg

ADAM WAZNY -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 8:33 AM ET

While the big club has question marks in its crease, it's a completely different story for the Manitoba Moose.

In fact, the way things have gone lately, teams around the American Hockey League are having trouble finding answers to the local side's goaltenders.

MOOSE 1 AMERICANS 0

Sebastien Centomo made 28 saves for second shutout of the season, leading the Moose past the Rochester Americans 1-0 in front of 6,931 at MTS Centre yesterday afternoon.

It was the second consecutive 1-0 victory for Manitoba.

On Saturday, Wade Flaherty picked up another goose egg over the Toronto Marlies. For those of you scoring at home, that's shutout No. 5 for the veteran -- not bad for a guy who will celebrate his 38th birthday a week from tomorrow.

"Three wins by 1-0 scores -- obviously, our goaltending has been solid," Alain Vigneault said, referring to the 1-0 shutout victory by Flaherty over San Antonio before the holiday break.

The Moose have won four in a row and in that time, have allowed just two goals.

On the flip side, the parent Vancouver Canucks have struggled since Dan Cloutier's season-ending knee injury. The NHL club has lost six of their last seven with the pairing of Alex Auld and Maxime Ouellet between the pipes, heading into last night's game at St. Louis.

So, just how does that Canucks goaltending depth chart read these days?

"Centomo was really strong when he needed to be," the head coach continued. "Defensively, we gave them more opportunities. It was the first time in a while at home where the other team had more chances to score than we did."

Centomo, who picked up his second shutout in just four starts, has been shuttling between Oklahoma City of the Central Hockey League and the Moose.

Though the club has signed him to an AHL contract (ensuring he's the guy that gets the call to Winnipeg when needed), the 24-year-old is hoping his play with the Moose earns him a more permanent stay.

"I feel confident when I come here," Centomo said. "I'm playing good down in the Central and when I come here I just play my game. It's pretty good so far. I just want to be a part of this team. For sure I want to move up, but it's not in my control."

Jason Jaffray scored the lone goal of the game, when he jumped on a loose puck and buried it past Rochester starter Jean-Marc Pelletier at the 14:04 mark of the first period.

After that, play was pretty tight, as both clubs didn't give an inch to their opponent in the attack zone.

"That's one of the best defensive groups ... they're pretty solid," Vigneault said of the Amerks' system. "They don't give you much. That's why we didn't generate a lot offensively.

"We're going to have to be better in that department (tonight)."

Pelletier made 16 saves for Rochester.

The Moose (23-11-1-2) now have 49 points and are just two back of the Grand Rapids Griffins in the battle for first place in the North Division.

The two clubs meet again today at MTS Centre (7:35 p.m.).


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