Griffins snap tie in third pe­riod

Austin American-Statesman - - SPORTS - Amer­i­can-States­man staff

The Grand Rapids Griffins scored three goals in the third pe­riod to top the Texas Stars 5-2 in an Amer­i­cal Hockey League game at the H-E-B Cen­ter at Cedar Park on Satur­day night.

Tyler Ber­tuzzi and Evgeny Svech­nikov each scored and as­sisted on goals to lead the Griffins.

Mark McNeill scored in his home de­but for the Stars (2527-1-2) to tie it in the sec­ond pe­riod, but an on­slaught of three goals by Grand Rapids in the fi­nal pe­riod spoiled the oc­ca­sion.

Jimmy Howard, on as­sign­ment from the Detroit Red Wings, earned the win as he stopped 31 of 33 shots.

Eric Tan­gradi’s goal in the third pe­riod proved to be the win­ner, though two more goals would fol­low.

Cole Ully gave the Stars an early lead as he scored a lit­tle over six min­utes into the first pe­riod, as­sisted by Nick Ebert and Gemel Smith.

Svech­nikov tied the game on a power play less than four min­utes later and as­sisted on Ber­tuzzi’s goal a lit­tle more than five min­utes af­ter that.

Ben Street gave the Griffins (37-16-1-2) some in­sur­ance as he made it 4-2 on a power play with less than four min­utes re­main­ing in reg­u­la­tion.

Matt Lorito added an empty-net goal a lit­tle more than 30 sec­onds later.

Justin Peters suf­fered the loss, al­low­ing four goals as he made 25 saves. will come soon re­gard­ing the quar­ter­back’s fu­ture. Re­leas­ing the 10-year starter is probable, but a trade could also be fa­cil­i­tated.

Romo will turn 37 next month. It’s dif­fi­cult to en­vi­sion him spend­ing the last few years of his ca­reer be­ing a backup, es­pe­cially af­ter that state­ment he read in Novem­ber, sug­gest­ing his pas­sion for win­ning and com­pet­ing might burn more than ever.

“Ob­vi­ously, we all know that he’s go­ing to have the op­por­tu­nity to look at what­ever sit­u­a­tion; if there are sit­u­a­tions, he’s go­ing to have an op­por­tu­nity to look at it,” Jones said. “He gets to say and con­trol this sit­u­a­tion ev­ery bit as much as we do.”

Jones said he had a “real good” ex­tended visit with Romo be­fore the Su­per Bowl last month. While no de­ci­sions were made about Romo’s fu­ture, Jones said that could change soon.

“He’s got a high tol­er­ance for am­bi­gu­ity,” Jones said. “I’ve got a high tol­er­ance for am­bi­gu­ity. We just don’t have to have this fig­ured as to the ul­ti­mate so­lu­tion for re­ally quite a while here.”

A three-team trade sce­nario was pro­posed by the NFL Net­work on Fri­day. In that deal, the Red­skins would send start­ing quar­ter­back Kirk Cousins to the 49ers, Romo would go to Wash­ing­ton and the Cow­boys would re­ceive San Francisco’s sec­ond over­all pick in this year’s draft.

Jones shot that idea down as soon as it was pre­sented to him Satur­day.

“Noth­ing fac­tual in any way,” he said. “Haven’t had that dis­cus­sion with any­one, most of all Romo . ... I wouldn’t have any con­sid­er­a­tion or com­ment or spec­u­late on what might fit be­cause I don’t think that any­one has that feel­ing at this par­tic­u­lar point.”

Jones de­clined to com­ment on whether there have been any calls about po­ten­tial trades for Romo.

If he is re­leased, he’d be free to sign with any club. Jones said he and Romo have dis­cussed ev­ery as­pect of that sce­nario. With the re­la­tion­ship they’ve built over the years, Jones is con­fi­dent Romo wouldn’t sign with a ri­val.

“It’s im­plied we will work in the best way we can for the mu­tual in­ter­est of Tony and the Cow­boys,” Jones said. “We can’t have agree­ments with­out it be­ing within the boundaries of the NFL, but when you’ve got a sit­u­a­tion like we got, we’ll do the do-right rule. That’s it. Very im­por­tant. We do the do-right rule. We have that kind of re­la­tion­ship.”

The Cow­boys don’t have much 2017 salary cap space. They would gain $5.1 mil­lion by re­leas­ing Romo on Thurs­day.

But that’s not enough to force the hand of an owner who still won’t rule out Romo be­ing Dak Prescott’s backup for the up­com­ing sea­son.

“We’re in a sit­u­a­tion right now where we need to see some things hap­pen,” Jones said. “We need to read some tea leaves. We don’t need to be overtly do­ing some­thing. We don’t need to do that for cap room; we don’t need to do that for any rea­son. We just need to see some di­rec­tion, and the way we’ll get it is by com­ing to­gether and mu­tu­ally work­ing that di­rec­tion out. I’m not try­ing to be vague; all I’m try­ing to do is say that we don’t have any­thing to move on at this point.”

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