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Marlies lose 3-1, eliminated from AHL Playoffs

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The Cinderella story is now complete, and unfortunately for the Toronto Marlies, the ending is an unhappy one.

The Toronto Marlies, minor affiliate of the Toronto Maple Leafs, have been eliminated from the American Hockey League's Calder Cup Playoffs, following a 3-1 loss to the Grand Rapids Griffins on Sunday night.

Toronto originally had a 2-0 lead in this series, coming back from deficits in both of their home games to win 7-4 and 5-2. However, the team was unable to escape adversity in the matchups that followed, and were just as unable to overcome it, falling 5-2 on Wednesday and 5-4 yesterday to set up a winner-take-all Game 5 this evening.

Louis-Marc Aubry gave Grand Rapids an early lead, scoring on the Griffins' twelvth shot in just eight minutes, but responded to by Toronto's Sam Carrick in the opening minutes of the second period.

Carrick's goal was ultimately the last one scored by a Marlies player in these playoffs, while Alden Hirshfeld and Andreas Athanasiou set their team apart with unassisted goals. Viktor Loov, who returned from a two-game suspension, made a costly mistake that lead to Hirshfeld's game winner.

Antoine BIbeau started in goal for the Marlies tonight in lieu of usual netminder Christopher Gibson, who had allowed nine goals in his previous two appearances. Bibeau made 39 saves on 42 shots in what was otherwise one of the best games in his young career. Matt Frattin lead the team with eight shots on goal.

Check back later this week for a full series recap and analysis.