Normally when a goaltender is off for a month during the season one would expect some rust in the form of a few goals he should have had in his next game. Not Scott Munroe. Munroe and the Penguins shutout the Binghamton Senators 3-0 tonight. It was Binghamton’s eighth straight loss.
Mike McKenna vs. Scott Munroe. Colin McDonald was sidelined with the flu, or flu-like symptoms. Dustin Jeffrey was recalled from his conditioning stint back to Pittsburgh.
First Period: B-Sens were flying out of the gate, Bobby Raymond hit a post. Six minutes in and Wilkes-Barre didn’t have a shot on goal. Then Brandon DeFazio goes out and gets two in his shift. The teams would trade two penalties a side and they’d skate back to the locker rooms scoreless.
Second Period: Pens had to kill two straight penalties and did so successfully, then Nick Petersen scored to make it 1-0 after McKenna was unable to control a rebound in a scrum. Steve MacIntyre had a shift in the middle of the period which really impressed me. He was throwing the body and nearly scored on a deflection. Late, Paul Thompson would score to make it 2-0 then nearly immediately afterward, Brian Gibbons would snipe a goal from the far dot to make it 3-0. Much like the two prior games, Wilkes-Barre gets two goals late to put itself out front.
Third Period: Not a whole lot to report here. Lots of end to end action. Carl Sneep made a few defensive plays. WBS would clamp down and play defense. They only took 5 shots on goal and allowed 8. Really nothing to report on. Munroe made the saves when he needed to preserve his second shutout on home ice.
Three Stars: 3) Jason Williams (2 assists, +2) 2) Scott Munroe (25 save shutout) and 1) Nick Petersen (goal, assist, +2)
Petersen and his wife welcomed a baby girl this morning right before lunch. Bombulie tweeted that he told his daughter that he’d score a goal for her. That he did, and more.
Can I say that WBS has a goaltending controversy on its hands? Thiessen and Munroe both have two shutouts now and are playing lights out in goal. Who gets the nod in Portland on Friday? Who sees two out of three in the weekend?
Around the Division: Wilkes-Barre and Binghamton were the only games in town.
Standings: The old saying is that games in hand don’t mean bunk unless you win them. WBS is the division leader up on Norfolk, 22 points to 19, Hershey sits third with 17 points. Syracuse 15 and Binghamton 12.
Conference: 1-StJ (25) 2-WBS (22) 3-ALB (18) 4-NOR (19) 5-ADK (17) 6-HER (17) 7-CT (17) 8-BRI (17)
Pens will probably have a light skate or a meeting or two before shipping to Portland on Thursday. I will be doing the same, but for attending meetings and practicing. If there isn’t anything to report on Wednesday, check me out on Thursday afternoon as I live-tweet (or attempt to) my six-hour trip to Portland.
Let’s Go Pens!