Chirps from Center Ice

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

Two Years, Two Points — Pens WIN 3-1


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The last time that the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins won in Springfield was two years, two days ago.

February 5, 2016. A 4-3 overtime win for the Penguins where names like Steve Oleksy and Anton Zlobin scored for the Penguins and Carter Rowney scored the overtime game winning goal.

Fast forward to Wednesday night, and the Penguins are winners in Massachusetts again.

3-1 is the final score. A battle all night with a better than advertised Springfield side who probably deserved better and will eventually. The Thunderbirds were 7-3 in their last ten games coming into tonight and on a three game winning streak. They were finally getting good goaltending out of the backup spot with their number one called up to parent Florida.

But better goaltending from the away team, coupled by power play success and its the Penguins who win their fourth straight to maintain the top spot in the Atlantic Division.

Casey DeSmith opposed Evan Cowley.

Lines were…

Thomas Di Pauli – J-S Dea – Reid Gardiner
Garrett Wilson – Gage Quinney – Daniel Sprong
Jarrett Burton – Greg McKegg – Patrick McGrath
Adam Johnson – Teddy Blueger – Colin Smith

Kevin Czuczman – Frank Corrado
Jarred Tinordi – Chris Summers
Andrey Pedan – Ethan Prow

Casey DeSmith – Anthony Peters

Lineup Notes: There were no recalls to Pittsburgh in the wake of Tom Kuhnhackl and Carter Rowney leaving the Pittsburgh Penguins games Tuesday night. Also, no one was preserved tonight in the wake of an impending recall Thursday. For the lineup tonight, there was some shuffling, but no roster changes.

First Period: Biggest play in the period came at the end of the period, where the Penguins found themselves on the wrong end of the 5-on-3 power play. Casey DeSmith made this save to preserve the scoreless period…

Second Period: Penguins had a double minor power play that they could not score on. Game was slowly starting to open up with good chances on both sides. Finally, Gage Quinney broke the 0-0 deadlock to give the Penguins the 1-0 lead on this nice pass by Reid Gardiner…

2:04 later, led by the Thunderbirds fourth line, Springfield tied it up. They kept the Penguins hemmed in the defensive zone and Dryden Hunt scored from the slot to tie the game back up at 1.

Daniel Sprong was hooked on a breakaway but lost the handle. Instead of awarding a penalty shot, the Penguins went on a straight 2:00 power play. Thomas DiPauli scored his first goal since December to give the Penguins a 2-1 lead heading into the…

Third Period: Casey DeSmith again, making saves that mortals can only dream of, keeps it a one goal game.

Penguins ice the game away with a power play goal on an empty net that was scored by Garrett Wilson that iced the game away…

Three Stars: 3) Evan Cowley (37 saves on 39 shots) 2) Gage Quinney (goal, +1) and 1) Thomas DiPauli (goal, even)

Around the Division: Lehigh Valley fights off Charlotte 4-3 at home to maintain their thorn in the side of the Penguins…Hartford beat Springfield earlier in the day 5-4 in overtime. Everyone else was off.

Standings: Penguins (.689 percentage points) — Lehigh Valley (.646) — Providence (.609) — Bridgeport (.564) — Charlotte (.552) — Hartford (.520) — Springfield (.469) — Hershey (.448)

Wheeling Update: The Nailers were off. They play again on Friday.

Video Highlights: Coal Street put their own out on Thursday morning. Check it out…

Penguins are going to stay in New England and likely bus to Providence Thursday where they will set up shop for the weekend with games Friday and Sunday there. Gameday setup for Friday’s game will hit the blog Friday at 3.

Let’s Go Pens!

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