Chirps from Center Ice

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

High Times — Pens WIN 4-3 (OT)

       vs.       

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Teddy Blueger scored two goals tonight, one at 4:19 of the first period and another at 4:19 of overtime. In case you didn’t get the rub of the blog headline.

Penguins win 4-3 in overtime in a hotly contested, physical affair, like the teams from Wilkes-Barre and Binghamton of yore. That’s a fun hockey game.

Wilkes-Barre looked like it was going on cruise control when Binghamton took over, outshooting the Penguins 11-0 and scoring two goals in the process to tie the game at 2-2, then got an ugly shorthanded goal to make it 3-2.

I’m not going to blow the whole story here in the lede, just know that it was a good game that the Penguins battled through and they should come out of it a better team for it.

Michael Leighton (making his Penguins season debut) opposed Ken Appleby.

Casey DeSmith will get the start Saturday against Lehigh Valley. Donatelli told the media Thursday that the two net minders would split the starts this weekend.

Lines were…

Zach Aston-Reese — J-S Dea — Ryan Haggerty
Garrett Wilson – Gage Quinney – Daniel Sprong
Adam Johnson – Teddy Blueger – Colin Smith
Cody Wydo – Jarrett Burton – Patrick McGrath

Andrey Pedan – Kevin Czuczman
Jarred Tinordi – Zach Trotman
Chris Summers – Frank Corrado

Michael Leighton – Casey DeSmith

Lineup Notes: Third time this season that the Penguins ideal lineup on defense dress….Greg McKegg was a healthy scratch, Tom and Tyler reported after the game that he is away attending to a family matter and won’t be back until after Christmas. Jeff Taylor skated the extra in warmups.

First Period: Adam Johnson chases down a puck to beat out an icing, dishes to Teddy Blueger who scored to make it 1-0 Penguins…

Foreshadowing…

Kevin Czuczman put a shot on from the point that Jarrett Burton tipped in to make it 2-0 Penguins.

Leighton was making some good saves when called upon, but then John Quennville ripped a shot over Leighton’s glove to get Binghamton on the board and made it a 2-1 game.

Binghamton scored again on a goofy play where there was a lucky Devil bounce on a wraparound play. Leighton was caught looking the other way and Nick Lappin put it in to make it 2-2.

Penguins got a power play late in the period then give up a goal to Michael Latta on a 2-on-1 that no goalie in the world would stop. Take a look…

Second Period: Pens had the better chances. Patrick McGrath picked up his first fighting major of the season, nobody scored so it was off to the..

Third Period: Jarret Burton scored on this goal which no one at the time, knew how it went in, sound up for Nick Hart’s reaction on the goal…

Tie game.

Things got physical. Zach Aston-Reese hit Nick Lappin which put Lappin out off the game. He fought Michael Latta who fought McGrath in the second.

Right after, Garrett Wilson laid a hit on a Devil which set off a mini brawl which put the Devils on the power play to close out the third as we headed to…

Overtime: Penguins killed the Devils power play easily. There was a stoppage and the teams when back to three on three. J-S Dea to Teddy Blueger at 4:19 of overtime…

Game. Set. Match. Maybe it takes a greasy win like this to break the Penguins out of the funk that they are in.

Three Stars: 3) Michael Leighton (28 saves on 31 shots) 2) Jarrett Burton (two goals, +2) and 1) Teddy Blueger (two goals, overtime game winner, +2)

Around the Division: The Hartford Wolf Pack may be the best team in the Atlantic Division at present. They methodically take down the Providence Bruins 6-4 at home. Springfield jumped out on Bridgeport and didn’t look back and won 5-2. Lehigh Valley, Hershey and Charlotte were all off.

Standings: Providence (.679 percentage points) — Charlotte (.661) — Penguins (.648) — Lehigh Valley (.645) — Bridgeport (.518) — Hartford (.516) — Hershey (.468) — Springfield (.422)

Wheeling Update: The Nailers hosted the Brampton Beast tonight and lost 3-1. Garrett Meurs scored for the Nailers. These two teams rematch tomorrow in West Virginia.

Video Highlights: 

Don’t forget that Saturday’s game against the Lehigh Valley Phantoms starts at 5:05, to get it out of the way so teams and their families can make it home in time fro Christmas on Monday. With no games on Sunday, look for the Week 12 AHL Power Rankings some time on Christmas Eve then. I will probably mention it again Saturday after the Phantoms game as well.

Let’s Go Pens!

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