In case you don’t get the headline, Teddy Blueger is from Latvia. As I was walking into the game tonight a Pens promo person asked me if I wanted to participate in a Pens trivia game, the subject being Teddy Blueger. I politely turned the guy down. The question ended up being what country Teddy Blueger is from.
Blueger’s overtime game winning goal caps off a tumultuous game for the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins. More on that in a minute.
The big news before the game was the announcement by the team that they signed Sebastian Caron to a PTO. Tristan Jarry left the game Tuesday night against Philly with an apparent injury. Casey DeSmith was not recalled today, but held out of the game likely at the request of the NHL team.
So why not recall the recently released Adam Morrison? Not that easy. Wheeling is down in Norfolk, who is in the direct path of that winter storm you may have heard of and most likely wasn’t available to be returned safely to Wilkes-Barre. Pens went the nostalgia route and signed a blast from the past to backup Anthony Peters in Sebastian Caron.
Extremely cheap move, in my opinion. There are 27 ECHL teams and all day to sign a guy who actively plays, get him in on a PTO and sit him down to watch an AHL game. Thankfully, Peters didn’t get injured tonight, because that would have been a disaster against a fifth place team hot on the Penguins tails. You may think it’s fun to see a guy you cheered for 12 years ago skate for your present day Penguins, but people pay money to watch this product. If the team isn’t putting forth the best possible product on the ice regardless of backup, that’s troubling.
Anyway. Pens win 3-2 in overtime against Bridgeport. Third win in a row for the Penguins, second in overtime.
Sound Tigers weren’t slouches tonight and weren’t slouches coming in. They hadn’t given up a power play goal in some time and have not allowed their opponents to have 10 or more shots in a period in some time either.
That all changed in the third period, however.
Anthony Peters opposed Christopher Gibson.
Zach Aston-Reese — J-S Dea — Ryan Haggerty
Garrett Wilson – Greg McKegg – Christian Thomas
Thomas Di Pauli – Teddy Blueger – Colin Smith
Cody Wydo – Jarrett Burton – Patrick McGrath
Andrey Pedan – Kevin Czuczman
Jeff Taylor – Jarred Tinordi
Chris Summers – Ethan Prow
Anthony Peters – Sebastian Caron
First Period: Bridgeport scored on their first power play of the night. Travis St. Denis from the near dot on a one timer that gave the Sound Tigers a 1-0 lead.
Later, Sound Tigers doubled their lead when a Kyle Burroughs shot rebounded to Michael Dal Colle.
Wilkes-Barre settled a bit, got a power play that they got close on a few times but didn’t score. They killed a late Garrett Wilson penalty.
Second Period: Penguins only muster four shots at Gibson in the period that featured no scoring. Couple power plays for each side but nothing to write home about.
Third Period: Thomas DiPauli appears to have scored a goal on the backhand to break the Gibson shutout, but referee Furman South washed the goal out immediately because Colin Smith was standing in the blue paint. South applied rule 69.3 from the AHL Rulebook.
In part, from the rule book,
69.3 Contact Inside the Goal Crease – If an attacking player initiates contact with a goalkeeper, incidental or otherwise, while the goalkeeper is in his goal crease, and a goal is scored, the goal will be disallowed.
If a goalkeeper, in the act of establishing his position within his goal crease, initiates contact with an attacking player who is in the goal crease, and this results in an impairment of the goalkeeper’s ability to defend his goal, and a goal is scored, the goal will be disallowed.
If, after any contact by a goalkeeper who is attempting to establish position in his goal crease, the attacking player does not immediately vacate his current position in the goal crease (i.e. give ground to the goalkeeper), and a goal is scored, the goal will be disallowed. In all such cases, whether or not a goal is scored, the attacking player will receive a minor penalty for goalkeeper interference.
If an attacking player establishes a significant position within the goal crease, so as to obstruct the goalkeeper’s vision and impair his ability to defend his goal, and a goal is scored, the goal will be disallowed.
For this purpose, a player “establishes a significant position within the crease” when, in the Referee’s judgment, his body, or a substantial portion thereof, is within the goal crease for more than an instantaneous period of time.
For what it’s worth, I didn’t see any of those parameters applied there. Donatelli told media post game that it wasn’t a play that could be reviewed and he’s right, it can’t be because that is in the rule book.
That controversial call seemed to light a fire under the Penguins.
The Penguins finally do score a clean goal when Ryan Haggerty scored off of an initial shot from Zach Aston-Reese that knuckled and handcuffed Gibson to put the Penguins on the board legally, and it was a 2-1 game.
Penguins on a last minute power play with Peters pulled score to tie the game when Garrett Wilson fed Greg McKegg in the slot to tie the game. That was the first power play Wilkes-Barre has scored in eight games, breaking Bridgeport’s streak of 33 straight kills in the process.
Overtime: In overtime and the momentum flowing, Pens capitalize on a turnover and Teddy Blueger scores through the five hole of Gibson to end it.
Hell of a way to battle back. Credit the Penguins for sticking around with Bridgeport and quickly erasing a two goal deficit.
Three Stars: 3) Zach Aston-Reese (credited with the initial goal which was later switched to Haggerty, Aston-Reese had an assist and was +1) 2) Greg McKegg (power lay goal, even) and 1) Teddy Blueger (overtime game winning goal, +1)
In the division, they all watched us.
Standings: Providence (.703 percentage points) — Lehigh Valley (.657) — Penguins (.641) — Charlotte (.632) — Bridgeport (.563) — Hershey (.486) — Hartford (.471) — Springfield (.429)
Wheeling Update: The Nailers are in Norfolk tonight and lost in overtime 3-2. Christian Horn had a hat trick for the Admirals, Riley Bourbonnais and Kevin Schulze scored for the Nailers in the loss. Colin Stevens took the overtime loss for Wheeling.
Wilkes-Barre hosts Springfield Friday. I may come here to mention the recalls (if any) made by Pittsburgh Thursday. If not, check out the Gameday setup with the Thunderbirds Friday at 3.
Let’s Go Pens!