I was called out of the area this afternoon and was not able to watch or listen to about 95% of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals between the Charlotte Checkers and the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins so I relied on Twitter to keep me updated. I guess you can say the tables turned.
From what I gathered from Twitter, the Penguins were in control through 40 minutes of play and had a 2-0 lead on the Charlotte Checkers going into the third period. Tristan Jarry was dialed in.
If you don’t get the headline, you must not be an Aerosmith fan. It was the same old story and same old song and dance for the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins.
The keys to the game tonight were simple. Stay out of the penalty box, maintain your composure and limit mistakes against this high octane, offensively gifted Charlotte Checkers team. For two periods it worked, for the third and final period, it didn’t.
I played basketball in college. One of the million things that resonated with me from my time away from home in Northeastern Pennsylvania still to this day was my coach telling us in certain situations that we are not playing to win, we are playing not to lose.
In the third period of Game 1 tonight, the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins had a 2-0 lead and played not to lose.
Stay out of the penalty box, maintain your composure and limit mistakes were the goals. The Penguins didn’t accomplish any of them, giving up two goals in the third, one on a power play after a bonehead turnover and the Penguins trail 0-1 in this best of five with Game 2 set to go off Saturday at 6 in Charlotte.
Game 2 basically becomes must win for Wilkes-Barre. It’s a tough spot. No lead will be safe based off of the third period collapse tonight. The Penguins know that and more dangerously Charlotte knows that. If the Penguins want to win tomorrow, it may take a 5-0 lead after the first period and just going into a shell for the final 40 minutes.
Tristan Jarry came to play tonight, stopping 35 shots. The Penguins tweeted out about four GIFs of his saves. It’s the team in front of him that played not to lose and now face a seemingly must win situation in Game 2 Saturday.
Since I didn’t watch the game, that’s pretty much it. Andrey Pedan scored late in the first on a power play and Daniel Sprong scored on a boffo shot from center ice in the second. Aleksi Saarela scored on a snipe to start the comeback in the third, and leading regular season goal scorer Valentin Zykov scored on a power play about five minutes later to tie it. The Penguins never possessed the puck in overtime and Lucas Wallmark tipped in a shot through a mess of bodies which may or may not have been interference on Jarry and the Checkers take game one 3-2 in overtime.
I have no idea if the Checkers are going to put out a highlight package. So here are the Penguins goals starting with Andrey Pedan…
And all three Checkers goals in one tweet.
Game 2 goes tomorrow at 6 from Charlotte, meaning that the Gameday setup here on the blog will be out Saturday at 2.
Let’s Go Pens!