J-S Dea was a healthy scratch in Friday’s game in Bridgeport against the Sound Tigers. It was the first time in a while that Dea had been a scratch. The usually reliable Dea is a staple in every Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins game. But not last night.
Normally coaches do this to send a message to a player that isn’t performing.
J-S Dea got the message, loud and clear.
The Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins, one of the stingiest defensive teams in the AHL, finally get their first shutout of the season and end the Bridgeport Sound Tigers four game win streak with a 1-0 win. Tristan Jarry started the game and stopped all 24 shots faced.
A frustrating game from the Penguins perspective through two periods. They were doing everything right, getting power plays and such but were not able to solve starting goaltender Stephon Williams at all and the power play was not clicking, up to an 0-for-28 stretch.
Williams came into the night with an 0-2 record against the Penguins with a .809 SV% and a 5.47 GAA. Just awful numbers against a team not known to fill up the net on a night by night basis. He nearly won the game for his team, but it was the Penguins, using tried and true system of defense, coupled with strong play in net by Jarry that was the decider in this game.
Dominik Simon – Kevin Porter – Tom Kostopoulos
Thomas Di Pauli – J-S Dea – Reid Gardiner
Garrett Wilson – Oskar Sundqvist – Josh Archibald
Patrick McGrath – Jarrett Burton – Ryan Haggerty
Derrick Pouliot – Chad Ruhwedel
David Warsofsky – Barry Goers
Cameron Gaunce – Ethan Prow
Tristan Jarry – Casey DeSmith
Lineup Notes: Carter Rowney took warmups but was a surprise scratch. He is day to day with an upper body injury as told to the WBS media by Clark Donatelli postgame. Dea and Haggerty were in for Danny Kristo and what was to be Patrick McGrath. Kristo, highly touted in the trade for Reid McNeill, was a heathy scratch in just his third game as Penguin. Barry Goers was in for Lukas Bengtsson on the blue line. Derrick Pouliot was in for his final game of his conditioning stint. He is expected to be recalled back to Pittsburgh either Sunday or Monday.
First Period: About as even as you could get for the Penguins and Sound Tigers. Just eight shots a piece. The Penguins hit a post on a power play but that was all for excitement from the Penguins perspective.
Second Period: Williams was dialing in. The Penguins couldn’t get anything past him. They were getting a lot of shots and limiting Bridgeport to just one about half way through the period. Pens would continue to have power plays handed to them but were not able to cash. Story to this point was the Penguins inability to crack on the power play, Williams’ stellar play in net and the Penguins defense with Jarry bending but not breaking against a Bridgeport attack that, if you give them a lead, they are hard to beat.
Third Period: Williams continued his stellar play, robbing Dominik Simon with the glove early on. The Penguins were getting another power play though, and this time they cashed when J-S Dea knocked in a puck legally with his stick under the bar on Williams in a big pileup. Williams then delivered a cross body block on Dea, which caused a melee.
Dea’s goal, originally credited to Kostopoulos, came with :01 left on the power play.
Seth with tweet of the night….
Later, Dea got his pound of flesh when he can opened Williams who came out to play a puck. He flipped the Bridgeport net minder on his can, then had to fight Kyle Burroughs. Burroughs received an instigating penalty to go along with a misconduct and a fighting major. Dea only got five for fighting and two for goaltending interference. This is important because Dea’s fight does not count against the, “10 fights gets you suspended” rule.
Not to say that Dea will ever get suspended for fighting ten times in the AHL, but we strive to educate and inform here at Chirps from Center Ice.
Pens had to kill a Chad Ruhwedel trip with about six minutes left to play, did, then weren’t able to score on an empty Bridgeport net but it mattered little.
Three Stars: 3) J-S Dea (goal, even) 2) Tom Kostopoulos (assist, even) 1) Tristan Jarry (24 save shutout)
Tom Kostopoulos was announced as the goal scorer at the time of the goal announcement, it wasn’t until after the game that they flipped it to Dea, so I wonder if you can flip three stars. My guess is no.
Around the Division: Providence loses to St,. John’s 4-3 in a shootout. The Bruins came back from three goals down to force extra time….Hershey sweeps Springfield 4-3. The Big Bear Machine is warming up….Hartford beats Lehigh Valley 3-1.
Standings: Penguins (.737 percentage points) — Lehigh Valley (.694) — Hershey (.684) — Bridgeport (.667) — Providence (.526) — Springfield (.500) — Hartford (.395)
Wheeling Update: Greenville beats the Nailers 3-2 in overtime. The two teams rematch tomorrow.
Neat little tidbit from Nick Hart…
The Week 7 AHL Power Rankings hit the blog at 4 p.m. Monday and the weekly Wheeling Wrap will be here Tuesday at noon. Anything newsworthy will be sprinkled in during the week.
Let’s Go Pens!