Penalty marred affair here where neither team was capitalizing on the infractions. I would have used it in “the bad” section at the end of the game story if the Penguins lost this game after being the beneficiary of seven power plays.
But they cashed on one, likely the most important one of the contest because it tied the game late, forcing overtime then a shootout where the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins win 3-2 Sunday afternoon via shootout.
Chalk this win up to Filip Lindberg who kept his team in it with some dazzling saves. He store down grizzled veteran J-F Berube.
Here’s how they lined up:
Lineup Notes: Jonathan Gruden was recalled to Pittsburgh Sunday afternoon. Sean Josling jumped back in for the recalled Gruden. Tommy Nappier back up Filip Lindberg.
First Period: The aforementioned Lindberg faced a barrage of early Checkers shots but stopped them all. The period was marred by penalties on both side but neither team was able to score.
Second Period: After the expiration of a power play, the Penguins would score the first goal courtesy of Drake Caggiula.
But then Matt Kiersted scores a goal that if the puck is delivered to him a foot later, he misses the net entirely.
Penalties continued (which was annoying) despite the Penguins being the beneficiary of the calls from referees Chris Waterstradt and Jake Kamrass, but no one else scored in the period, which never had any flow to it because of a refs whistle stopping play seemingly every minute.
Third Period: Lucas Carlsson continued to villanize the Penguins with a goal in the opening moments in the period which edged the Checkers ahead 2-1.
Penguins would continue to get power plays but couldn’t do anything with them. They get one about halfway through the period and finally cash.
That’s Valtteri Puustinen on a Mitch Reinke shot that ties the game.
But remember how I said that Filip Lindberg was the hero in this game? He was none finer with this save which should make the highlight reel at the end of the season.
Late foreshadowing where Lukas Svejkovsky chases a rebound off of JF Berube and Berube takes a swing at the Penguins forward 10 years his minor with his stick.
Overtime: Nick Hart stated at the start that it was the Penguins 12th appearance. That’s a lot of points that matter, but it depends on who you give the other point to. With it being Charlotte, the Penguins were always from this point forward, at least for now, not be able to pass the Checkers for third in the division.
No one scored. Svejkovsky had the game on his stick a couple time but couldn’t find a lane to fire.
Shootout: Alex Nylander with a shake and bake in round one and a roof job, then Lukas Svejkovsky goes five hole in round two. Lindberg stops Anton Levtchi in round one, Zac Dalpe beat him in round two and he stopped Gerry Mayhew.
Three Stars: 3) Mitch Reinke (two assists) 2) Matt Kiersted (goal) 1) J-F Berube (32 saves)
The Good: Role players stepped up with a good chunk of the regulars out of the lineup for whatever reason. A point off Charlotte for third in the division is a good consolation, all things considered.
The Bad: But for the officiating, leaving your rookie goaltender out to dry a few times isn’t a recipe for success at all. Good thing that Lindberg is good at his craft, especially on this day.
Turning Point: The power play goal that gets us to overtime by Puustinen gets it here.
Around the Division: Providence hosted Hartford in the only other division action this afternoon and needed overtime to beat the Wolf Pack 3-2 in overtime.
Standings: Hershey 54 – Providence 51 – Charlotte 42 – Penguins 41 – Lehigh Valley, Hartford and Bridgeport 37 – Springfield 35
Wheeling Update: Nailers started a little later than the Pens this afternoon and hosted the Kalamazoo Wings but lost in overtime. Brooklyn Kalmikov had a goal and an assist. Here’s the box.
Video Highlights: They didn’t post any last night but the AHL Video Center came through so if you are really interested in the video highlights, navigate here.
Back at it Wednesday at home against Syracuse. I’ll have the Weekend Preview for you some time mid-morning then. Talk to you then.
Let’s Go Pens!