The Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins played their first home game 19 years ago Tuesday. Coal Street had a nice feature on their website which you can check out complete with an eight minute highlight package.
For 20 seasons though, a Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins goaltender has never scored a goal.
Fourteen seconds after losing a shutout bid, goaltender Tristan Jarry scored an empty net goal.
No, really, if you don’t believe me, here it is.
And it wasn’t like it was anything like a luck chance or a deflection or own goal from the other team. It was a dart. Tristan Jarry stepped into it and let it rip. And absolute howler.
First ever in Penguins history.
Wilkes-Barre likes making history in Springfield, Massachusetts.
The Penguins won the game 5-1. Springfield has now lost four straight. I don’t want to call anything, “must win” in November, but this game felt as close to a must win as humanly possible for the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins.
Jarry opposed Michael Hutchinson.
Lineup Notes: Head Coach Clark Donatelli shuffled up things at the center position. Lafferty to 1C, Blueger to 2C, Grant from 1C down to 3C. No change to fourth line. On defense: Taylor for Matt Abt.
First Period: Was a herky jerky start for it being a 10:30 a.m. start, lots of icings and offsides. Some scary moments for the Penguins when Ethan Prow lost an edge three time skating backwards but Jarry was able to make the save and then Teddy Blueger makes the stop on the goal line in a scramble in front of the Penguins net.
Penguins get on the board late with goals by Jarrett Burton and Linus Olund. Burton’s goal came off of a deflection of a Stefan Elliott shot:
…and then Olund, on an extended shift, scores on this dump in play by Wilkes-Barre that made it 2-0.
Penguins killed a later power play in the only special teams action in the period for both sides.
Second Period: Teams traded power plays but couldn’t get anything set up. Anthony Angello added a third Penguin goal when Hutchinson tried to play a puck but couldn’t because it was out of his reach in the restricted zone. Linus Olund collected the puck from behind the net and fed Angello for the goal.
Paul Thompson had a breakaway but missed late, his shot ringing off of the goal post behind Tristan Jarry.
Third Period: The Penguins took three straight puck over glass delay of game penalties before taking a hooking call with under three minutes to play. It was at that point that Thunderbirds Head Coach Geordie Kinnear pulled Hutchinson for the extra two attackers on a 6-on-4 power play.
Joel Lowry scored to break up the Jarry shutout bid.
:14 later, Jarry scored. Again, for emphasis…
He is the 14th goalie in AHL history to be credited with a goal.
Jarry led the fist bump line too, because that is what goal scorers do.
Anyway, the game was not over at that point and Jimmy Hayes got in behind the Thunderbirds defense and scored a breakaway goal to make it 5-1.
Around the Division: Bridgeport and Hartford also played in a school day game. Hartford wins 4-3 in overtime. Charlotte and Lehigh Valley played at the more conventional 7:05 start time and the Phantoms beat the Checkers 3-2 in overtime.
Standings: Charlotte 23 — Bridgeport 20 — Lehigh Valley 20 — Penguins 20 — Springfield 16 — Hershey 15 — Hartford 15 — Providence 12
Wheeling Update: Nailers do not play today, are in action again this Friday in Jacksonville, Florida.
Pens bus home for a pair of games against the Charlotte Checkers Friday and Saturday. In the meantime though, the Week 6 AHL Power Rankings will be here on the blog likely sometime Thursday morning. Check back then.
Let’s Go Pens!