So they had a bad first, a better second, then a bad start to the third and a better finish of the third and win 3-2 in overtime in Charlotte Tuesday.
Amazing because this is a game they probably lose two weeks ago. Or do they? Seems like the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins have only played the Lehigh Valley Phantoms and Charlotte Checkers, so the sample size isn’t as broad as it could be.
In reality, I think it’s two average teams that are just are what they are at this point. And that can be a good thing.
They rematch Wednesday.
Louis Domingue opposed Joey Daccord.
Here’s how they lined up:
Lineup Notes: From Saturday in Providence, no changes to the lineup. Jordy Bellerive skated in his 100th WBS Penguins game. The Penguins sent Justin Almeida and Will Reilly to Wheeling Tuesday.
First Period: Pens got an early power play just 64 seconds into the game but didn’t register a shot on goal. Charlotte then possessed the hell out of the puck and outshot the Penguins 12-2 in the games first 11:07. Finally Henry Bowlby plays a puck off of one of the linemen and starts a rush and finds Gregori Denisenko for a goal that puts the Checkers on the board.
Penguins turned it on from there. In one sequence, Nathan Legare missed an open net off a perfect setup by Felix Robert then Robert was denied by Daccord on a great save.
Shots were 18-9 Checkers after the first. The 18 shots were the most allowed by the Penguins in one period all season.
Second Period: So whatever the message was at the first intermission by the coaching staff, it was received loud and clear because the Penguins came out blazing, tied up the shots at the end of the period at 25 and had a strong period.
Michael Chaput scored a power play goal on a breakaway after a blocked shot.
The Penguins continued to buzz, had a few more chances but weren’t able to get another goal.
But then Chase Priskie slammed home a drop pass left for him and the Checkers went back on top.
Penguins outshot the Checkers 16-7 in the period. Wilkes-Barre was gifted power play after power play, year only converted once with Chaput marker earlier in the period.
Third Period: Louis Domingue with a save of the year candidate stop on Alex True.
The Penguins had a blitzkrieg of shots and chances in the second period but had one paltry shot on goal thirteen plus minutes into the third period.
It didn’t matter really, because on their second shot in the third, they scored a goal.
Kyle Olson’s goal there on a nice pass into the slot by Michael Chaput.
Pens had a bevy of odd man rushes at Daccord, one was Valtteri Puustinen setting up Filip Hallander, but Hallander wasn’t able to connect for a goal.
Overtime: Three breakaways for the Penguins, a couple chances were P.O. Joseph could finish the game but it wasn’t until Filip Hallander scored to end the game and win it for the Penguins.
Three Stars: 3) Chase Priskie (goal) 2) Louis Domingue (33 saves) 1) Filip Hallander (game winning goal)
The Good: They won a game where, maybe two weeks ago, they lose. I think there’s progress being made.
The Bad: They had six power play opportunities and scored on one of them. Close game where if they lose, you point right to this deficiency.
Turning Point: They didn’t lead until the very end, on Filip Hallander’s goal which got them the win.
Around the Division: Only game in the AHL tonight. Seems like it should carry more of a dubious distinction, but it doesn’t.
Standings: Springfield .813 percentage points / Hartford .750 / Hershey .567 / Penguins .563 / Providence .536 / Charlotte .500 / Bridgeport .382 / Lehigh Valley .344
Wheeling Update: Nailers were off. They went out Monday and got themselves a goalie. I don’t know what this means, but if I were to read the tea leaves, it means that the injury to Filip Lindberg means that Tommy Nappier is going to be living out of an apartment vs. a hotel room, meaning more longer term, then it is what it is.
These two teams rematch Wednesday. More then.
Let’s Go Pens!