Pens were due for this one.
They lose tonight 6-3 to the Albany Devils in a game best described as a clunker. Simple as that.
Joe Morrow and Eric Tangradi were a -4 tonight. Somehow, Paul Thompson was a +3.
I’m not going to pile on. Losses like these happen. Move on to the next one.
Brad Thiessen vs. Keith Kinkaid. Joey Mormina, Brian Strait, Zach Sill and Steve MacIntyre were the healthy scratches.
First Period: Riley Holzapfel scores off a quick developing play from a pass from Beau Bennett for a quick 1-0 lead. Then, lead by a Steve Zalewski odd man rush, Bobby Butler centers Joe Whitney who scores. Brian Dumoulin and Joe Morrow victimized defensively. Would end up being a theme tonight.
Second Period: If you were doing errands around the house or lost sense of time, the Pens were down 3-1. Harri Pesonen and Bobby Bulter score on busted WBS breakout passes. At this point three goals on seven Devils shots. But, Brian Dumoulin answered right back. Coming in four on two, Riley Holzapfel digs a puck off the wall and passes to Dumoulin who has all day to wire it past Kinkaid. Later, while on a power play, Joe Morrow tries to center a pass back to Trevor Smith at the point. The pass has a bit too much steam on it and hops Smith’s stick. Bobby Butler pounces on it and scores a shorthanded hat trick goal. Devils get extended 5-on-3 power play time later, hit the post three times. Penguins kill the penalty then on a rush Paul Thompson finds Jayson Megna who slips it five hole on Kinkaid for a 4-3 Albany lead.
Despite all this, I felt that the Penguins were not out of this game and could have still come back and won.
Third Period: Bobby Butler eradicates Dylan Reese at his own blue line. Picks up the puck, skates in and drops a pass for Steve Zalewski and it’s 5-3 Albany. Later, Butler scofres goal number four on a ridiculous backhand goal from about 10′ away to make it 6-3 Devils.
Fights. Bobby Farnham probably loses his first fight of the year against Darcy Zajac. Dominik Uher tunes up Steve Zalewski. Uher then fights Zajac.
First time all year the Penguins allow six goals to an opponent.
Three Stars: 3) Jacob Josefson (two assists, +1) 2) Steve Zalewski (goal, two assists, +2) 1) Bobby Butler (four goals, assist +5)
Around the Division: The sound you hear behind you is the Big Bear Machine getting its sea legs. Braden Holtby and the Bears shut out the St. John’s IceCaps 4-0 and now sit one point behind the Pens. For what it is worth the Bears have played the most games in the division. Syracuse drops Binghamton 4-3. Norfolk was off tonight.
Standings: Syracuse 33 — Binghamton 28 — Penguins 28 — Hershey 27 — Norfolk 20
Conference: 1) SYR (33) 2) SPR (32) 3) WOR (27) 4) BNG (28) 5) WBS (28) 6) HER (27) 7) PRO (26) 8) POR (26)
Wheeling Update: Wheeling loses in Toledo tonight 5-2. Patrick Killeen was placed on 21-day injured reserve today.
SendToNews Highlights: No idea if Albany puts them up. They have nothing at the time you read this.
Pens faceoff against Binghamton Friday night at home. Gameday for that will be up here at 3 p.m. Friday.