Chirps from Center Ice

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

Bear Down, Win Game — Pens WIN 3-2


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The Hershey Bears were 1-4-1 coming into tonight’s game against the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins. They just came off of a Midwestern road trip where they beat the Grand Rapids Griffins for their only win of the season, then got smoked by the Milwaukee Admirals and shutout by the Rockford IceHogs.

Tonight, they didn’t play like a 1-4 team.

If I was writing this game as a Bears fan, I would point back to the six minute stretch in the first period of a scoreless game where Hershey was unable to score on three consecutive power plays. I’d feel good about the Bears battling back to make it 2-2 and upset at the fact that the Penguins scored on a power play of their own and optimistic about the minute or so of relentless pressure that the Bears put on the Penguins at the end of the game with the goaltender pulled.

Moral of the story if you are a Bears fan is that you won’t be down for long. You never are.

The Penguins can be happy about this gritty, gutty 3-2 win against rival Hershey. Wilkes-Barre sits 5-2 to start the season and after some shaky starts, look to be on track to continue to improve on the young season.

Tristan Jarry opposed Adam Carlson.

Lines were….

Dominik Simon – Adam Johnson – Christian Thomas
Garrett Wilson – Gage Quinney – Daniel Sprong
Zach Aston-Reese — J-S Dea — Tom Kostopoulos|
Tom Sestito – Teddy Blueger – Thomas Di Pauli

Andrey Pedan – Lukas Bengtsson
Kevin Czuczman – Ethan Prow
Chris Summers – Dylan Zink

Tristan Jarry – Colin Stevens

Lineup Notes: Obie’s tweet will do well to summarize…

First Period: Pens killed an Ethan Prow delay of game at 5:54, a Tom Sestito hook at 7:58 and then a Tom Kostopoulos high stick at 10:00. Three consecutive penalties that the Bears could not cash on.

Then the Penguins scored when J-S Dea scored on this play where Christian Thomas set the screen on Carlson on a delayed call for the Penguins…

Nice play by Summers to keep the puck in, don’t know what the Bears were doing just letting Dea skate in unabated and better play by Thomas getting in Carlson’s sightline for Dea to pick his corner like that.

Second Period: Penguins give the Bears only two power plays to start the second and kill them. Then the Penguins get a power play on this monstrosity of a call by referees Schlenker and South…

Perhaps they saw that Johansen was still moving his feet as the play went dead, but neither one of them must be good at physics because Johansen was losing his balance and needed to get his feet from under him. Penguins didn’t score on the power play that ensued, but it was a terrible call at the time to give the Penguins, despite the fact that every call to this point was going against the home team.

All for naught, Teddy Blueger made it 2-0 Penguins on this pretty play and keep in of his own even strength….

Jeremy Langlois pounced on a puck to score to cut the Penguin lead to one. This was a shorthanded goal.

I called it a bad outlet pass from Lukas Bengtsson, Nick Hart on color through Twitter called it a puck that ricocheted off of a linesman right to Langlois. I’m going to give the benefit of teh call to Hart, who is paid to watch the game and has a better sight line than I 10 rows below him, obscured through glass and the visitors bench.

Big moment in the game was when Wayne Simpson was called for a hook and Chris Bourque said something questionable or objectionable to referee Schlenker and received a 10-minute misconduct. Hershey was without it’s biggest sniper for half of the…

Third Period: Riley Barber scored to tie the game after this nice cross ice pass from Lucas Johansen…

Penguins finally connect on the power play when Kevin Czuczman half cocked on a shot that he must have thought was going to go off bodies. Dominik Simon had the puck fall right to his feet and scored on the wide open net to give the Penguins the 3-2 lead…

Bears followed with immense pressure, forcing Jarry into many ten bell saves and with Carlson pulled for the extra man were never able to find the equalizer.

Three Stars: 3) J-S Dea (goal, +1) 2) Tristan Jarry (30 saves on 32 shots) and 1) Dominik Simon (goal, assist, +3)

Video Highlights: 

Around the Division: Lehigh Valley continues to win, beating Springfield 5-2…Providence continues theirs, beating Binghamton on the Southern Tier 4-1…Bridgeport beats Hartford with Alan Quine down on conditioning from the New York Islanders and Josh Ho-Sang on straight up assignment 5-1. Penguins are in Bridgeport tomorrow. Charlotte was off. They host Utica for a pair  starting Saturday.

Standings: I will do the percentages and make everything correct in November. Consider me on summer still. Providence 12 (percentage) — Lehigh Valley 15 — Charlotte and Wilkes-Barre 10 each, Hartford 7, Bridgeport 6, Hershey and Springfield with 3.

Wheeling Update: After being up 6-2 against Brampton, a train leaves the station going 75 mph while a train 30 miles closer to it’s destination leaves the station doing 50 mph. I forget the rest and was bad at word problems in school so the Nailers hang on to win 6-5. Beast scored three in the third to make it a game. Kenny Ryan had two goals and an assist for the Nailers for first star honors. Sean Maguire picked up the win, stopping 39 of 44. Will King served as his backup, so no need for a goalie for the Nailers with Stevens on AHL recall.

This situation will need to be watched closely going forward. It is not ideal for Maguire to backup in Wilkes-Barre, but his trajectory is AHL and eventually NHL (as is any players) but leaving Wheeling with a tandem of Stevens and King may not bode well, but in situations like these you always default to who has the NHL contract. That’s Maguire. We’ll see. Too early to speculate on anything yet.

Pens are on the road Saturday for what’s likely to be a big test against a loaded Bridgeport lineup. Gameday setup hits the blog at 3.

If Coal Street puts up video highlights, I will work in a late night edit or try to get to it in the morning.

Let’s Go Pens!

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