Chirps from Center Ice

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

Dad Power — Pens WIN 4-1

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I am not a parent, so I have no idea about what it is like to have children.

A few weeks ago, Jimmy Hayes and his wife learned that they will be having a baby boy later this year. Since learning of the news, Hayes has seven goals and two assists in seven games. Hayes had a hat trick in a 4-1 Wilkes-Barre win in rather impressive fashion over the Lehigh Valley Phantoms Wednesday night.

Dad power indeed.

I don’t know about Tristan Jarry’s plans on parenthood, but the Penguins net minder was on point in a place where he normally is solid. He stopped 38 Phantoms shots and was beat on a fluke of a shot in the third period which spoiled his shutout bid.

He opposed Alex Lyon.

Lines were…

Lineup Notes: Jake Lucchini replaced Joseph Blandisi and Trevor Yates replaced Patrick McGrath up front as the lineup changes from Saturday. On defense, Macoy Erkamps went in for Jeff Taylor.

First Period: Jimmy Hayes swept in his twelfth goal of the season on this rebound of a Joseph Cramarossa shot that gave the Pens a 1-0 lead.

Tristan Jarry was dialed in for Wilkes-Barre on the penalty kill stopping these two attempts on two separate penalty kills.

That save was on Mike Vecchione.

And this one was on Zach Palmquist.

Lively period otherwise with the shots being 14-13 in favor of the Penguins.

Second Period: Nothing really happened in the period where there were no penalties and no scoring but what became apparent in the contest was how well Jake Lucchini fit in with Jimmy Hayes and Joseph Cramarossa. Nick Hart on radio stated that Lucchini few into town late Tuesday night and joined the team for morning skate Wednesday.

Third Period: :19 in, Ryan Haggerty scored to give the Penguins a 2-0 lead.

Big goal at the time. Nothing happened at all in the second period worth noting, so the next action was going to change the complexity of the game in some form of fashion. Haggerty’s goal tightened the grip that the Penguins had on the game to this point.

Jimmy Hayes scored his second of the game on this nice pass by Jarrett Burton which set the Pens off on a 2-on-1 that Hayes took himself.

Bryon Froese busted up the Jarry shutout with this goal.

Let me state for the record that those Phantoms jerseys are putrid. If my memory serves, Lehigh Valley debuted these in an outdoor game a few years back against Hershey I think. They should have left them there. Terrible.

Hayes completed his hat trick via empty net that made it 4-1.

Three Stars: 

The Good: Jimmy Hayes is heating up at the right time. You want scoring depth out of all three of your lines. Anthony Angello has hit a bit of a rookie wall, Adam Johnson and Ryan Haggerty can drop a goal at anytime. With Joseph Blandisi in Pittsburgh, the Penguins have no other players in double digit goals that play forward (Ethan Prow has 17 goals) so getting goals from Hayes at a time like this where the Pens are battling for a playoff spot is a sight to see.

I had a tweet at the beginning of the game that the debuts of Yates and Lucchini can be either really, really good or really, really bad. It’s a small sample size, but so far, so good.

The Bad: Can’t think of anything. No penalties after the first period. Maybe the goal that Froese scored that broke up the shutout?

Turning Point: Haggerty’s goal :19 into the third deflated the Phantoms and any comeback that they had hopes on was extinguished with that goal, coupled with Hayes’ performance and Jarry’s.

Around the Division: Hershey beats Springfield 5-3. Hartford beats Binghamton 4-3 in overtime.

Standings: Charlotte 85 — Bridgeport — 79 — Hershey 74 — Providence 71 — Penguins 67 — Lehigh Valley 66 — Springfield 64 — Hartford 63

Wheeling Update: Nailers were off.

If Coal Street runs a video highlight package it will run in this spot.

Pens are off Friday but the games to watch are Hershey hosting Toronto and Lehigh Valley hosting Providence.

Week 23 AHL Power Rankings are here Thursday.

Let’s Go Pens!

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