Season on the brink- Syracuse Crunch falls to Grand Rapids, one game away from elimination

The Syracuse Crunch falls to Grand Rapids 3-2 in Game 4 of the Calder Cup Finals (Matt Hauswirth)

The next loss, would be their last.

The Syracuse Crunch fell on Friday night 3-2 to the Grand Rapids Griffins in front of their largest crowd this century, 6,523 fans at the War Memorial. The Griffins now lead the series 3-1.

It's a scenario the hometown hockey team refuses to entertain.

"It's just a challenge, but we're excited for it. We just have to take it one game at a time" says Cory Conacher.

The next game in that stretch is Saturday night at the War Memorial, Game 5 with the season on the line.

For the first time the entire postseason, and more than two months overall, the Crunch fell on home ice.

Ben Street and Dan Renouf spotted Grand Rapids an early 2-0 lead in the first period.

Credit where it's due, Mike McKenna was outstanding once again with 32 saves, but a second goal from Renouf proved too much even with a Crunch comeback.

Yanni Gourde's goal put Syracuse on the board first, but the deficit was still 3-1. Michael Bournival's third period tally got those six thousand fans on their feet, making it a 3-2 game but ultimately the Crunch couldn't even the score.

So it all comes down to Game 5, if the Crunch wins the season is extended on another trip to Grand Rapids next week.

Should they fall, this magical run for the Salt City is over.

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