Chirps from Center Ice

A fan blog about the AHL's Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins

It’s Like Riding a Bike — Pens WIN 2-1 (OT)

   button_adk200       @       WBS

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A total of 81 shots combined between these newly formed divisional rivals turned into a defensive battle and a goaltending war.

The Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins win this one 2-1 in overtime thanks to two goals by Scott Wilson and 40 saves by Matt Murray, who was only 1:49 away from yet another shutout but it wasn’t to be.

[tweet https://twitter.com/nafsnep/status/652622017590599684]

That was the view for me all night. Someone forgot to hook up a wire or turn on a camera. I pay a pretty penny for the league wide package. People tell me I am crazy. I think that they may be right…

Lines were…

Scott Wilson – Kael Mouillierat – Conor Sheary
Dominik Simon – J-S Dea – Bryan Rust
Dominik Uher – Oskar Sundqvist – Tom Kostopoulos
Tom Sestito – Carter Rowney – Josh Archibald

Derrick Pouliot – Steve Oleksy
Reid McNeill – David Warsofsky
Niclas Andersen – Will O’Neill

Matt Murray – Tristan Jarry

Scratches were defensemen Harrison Ruopp and Barry Goers and forwards Matia Marcantuoni and Tyler Biggs. Biggs is recovering from a minor injury. Will O’Neill and Steve Oleksy wore the “A’s” for the Penguins tonight.

First Period: The Penguins were outshot 17-9 in the first period of their 2015-16 campaign, mainly because they took all of the penalties in the period. Three total. Matt Murray was sharp. When called upon, opposing goaltender Zane McIntyre was sharp as well. There was a fight, Steve Oleksy and Anthony Camara:

[tweet https://twitter.com/AHLBruins/status/652629652339597312]

Murray had a save on a two on one with P-Bruins sniper Alex Khokhlachev barring down.

Second Period: Pens stopped taking penalties and started to control the pace a bit. Finally, Scott Wilson scored on a turnaround shot on a shot from the slot. Conor Sheary had the lone assist. Penguins started to generate pressure coming from all lines, but Zane McIntyre was college hockey’s top goaltender last season and kept his team in it. Despite me not being able to watch the game tonight because of the NeuLion difficulties, I still listened to Mike O’Brien and he was calling a lot of chances for the Penguins that were just smothered by McIntyre.

Teams traded power plays late but neither scored. Shots through two were 30-21 in favor for the Bruins.

Third Period: Penguins penalty killing along with the solid goaltending won them the game tonight. The Penguins took two additional penalties in this period but the special teams and Matt Murray kept the P-Bruins off of the board.

But the Bruins continued to press. Seemed like every other word out of Obie’s mouth on radio was, “Khokhlachev” as the Bruins sniper was being double or triple shifted. Finally, on setup by Khokhlachev, Frank Vatrano threw a shot at Murray’s net from the side wall from a bad angle that tied the game with 1:49 left. The game would need to be decided via…

Overtime: Scott Wilson’s group of he and Oskar Sundqvist with Will O’Neill was the second group to go over the wall in the 3-on-3 overtime and Wilson didn’t waste much time scoring 1:18 into the overtime period to secure the full two points for the Penguins.

Three Stars: 3) Zane McIntyre (38 saves on 40 shots) 2) Matt Murray (40 saves on 41 shots) and 1) Scott Wilson (two goals, +2, 6 shots)

Around the Division: Portland, Springfield, Bridgeport Hartford, Hershey and Lehigh Valley all start their 2015-16 campaigns Saturday.

I am not going to put the Standings or Conference standings up until everyone plays a game, so if you want this, check back tomorrow when everyone in the Atlantic plays a game.

Wheeling Update: The Nailers are in preseason and lost to the Cincinnati Cylcones 4-2 tonight in West Virginia. The Nailers open on the road in Norfolk next Friday.

SendToNews Highlights: See above, first picture.

Pens bus to Bridgeport for a 7 p.m. game against the divisional rival Sound Tigers. Gameday for this will hit the blog Saturday at 3.

Let’s Go Pens!!

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