Chirps from Center Ice

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

Preseason Game #1 – Pens 1, Phantoms 4

Preseason for bloggers too so in seasons past, nothing too dressed up for you tonight. Apologies on the formatting issues if there are any.

Alex D’Orio opposed Alex Lyon.

Lines were as follows:

Ryan Scarfo – Jordy Bellerive – Jan Drozg
Kasper Björkqvist – Chase Berger – Yushi Hirano
Jake Lucchini – Miles Powell – Brandon Hawkins
Jamie Devane – Chris Brown – Renars Krastenbergs

Matt Abt – Macoy Erkamps
Michael Kim – Aaron Titcomb
Craig Skudalski – Blake Siebenaler

Alex D’Orio – Emil Larmi

Matt Abt wore the C with Chase Berger and Jake Lucchini in the A’s.

Pens got run over in the first, taking two penalties and getting scored on once when Steven Swavely popped in a rebound of an Isaac Radcliffe shot a little past half way at even strength.

Pens had just three shots on goal, and one of them came on the penalty kill, an innocuous clearing bid from their own end that they counted.

In the second, penalty trouble bit the Penguins as the Phantoms scored twice on the man advantage. Pascal Laberge put in a pass / shot from Greg Carey and then Carey again with another setup to Matt Strome for a 3-0 lead.

Things settled from there for the Pens who started to get a few power plays which looked sharp. Finally Jordy Bellerive scored on the back door on a power play to make it 3-1. A really nice setup for Jake Lucchini, who I thought was the Pens best player tonight.

Things evened out a bit in the third but when you’re down two goals and chasing the bad start you had you start to run out of time. Alex D’Orio did his part in keeping it a two goal deficit but the Pens wouldn’t draw closer. Then with under five to play and D’Orio vacated, Greg Carey hit an empty net for a three point night and it was 4-1.

It ended that way.

Impressions: I thought Jake Lucchini was far and away the Penguins best player tonight….Alex D’Orio is probably going to start the season in Wheeling but if he played like he played tonight it shouldn’t be for long. He did all he could to keep the Penguins in the game but all Wilkes-Barre did was take penalty after penalty. Take those two power play goals out of the equation and it’s a completely different game.

Penguins head coach Mike Vellucci told Tyler postgame that Emil Larmi will start and play the full 60 against Hershey Friday. Let’s hope the Penguins play a little better in front of Larmi as they did in front of D’Orio.

More then unless there’s breaking stuff Thursday.

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