Chirps from Center Ice

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

We Didn’t 1-4 This To Happen…


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I don’t think it matters here because it’s still a regulation loss, but the Phantoms added two empty net goals which inflated the final score here.

A 4-1 setback Friday to the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. Help from out of town with Hartford and Bridgeport going down, but there’s only 15 games left in the season, it will be 14 after Saturday and the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins are five points out.

Here’ how they lined up…

Lineup Notes: Roster stability, I guess because there were no changes from Wednesday. Alex Nylander was recalled to Pittsburgh before the game.

First Period: Phantoms score on their first shot of the game via a Ronnie Attard snipe.

Great start! 🙄

It was a feckless, toothless, inert effort by the home team in the first period. Have the players checked out?

Second Period: Sam Houde on a power play, ties the game.

The Penguins power play is lethal. Sad, really, that the team as a whole sucks and probably won’t make playoffs, but the power play is firing on all cylinders and it’s good to see them get goals on the man advantage.

Penguins get out of a 90 second five on three against, with a lot of blocks from Mark Friedman and even a glove save through traffic from Dustin Tokarski. Here’s where I thought success here would propel the Penguins to a goal, for something positive.

I was wrong.

I’m sorry, but what the hell is this? There is NO ONE to the goaltenders right. Cooper Marody runs right over, gets the puck and gets a shot through. He has a lot more ground to cover then the goaltender. Tokarski either misreads the play entirely or is point shaving, or is too old and too slow to play goal at this level any longer.

Third Period: Penguins aren’t able to cash on a power play, Drake Caggiula was snakebit and wasn’t able to figure out Sam Ersson all period. Caggiula was easily the Penguins best player in that period, if not all game.

Ollie Lycksell was awarded a penalty shot. I have no idea how he was awarded a penalty shot because he wasn’t, in my mind at least, unabated to the goaltender and got what IU thought was a shot off, but referee Mike Zyla awarded one anyway.

Indeed, since it kept it a 2-1 game.

Penguins use their time out with 2:18 left and pull Tokarski. I don’t think J.D. Forrest’s plans included a cross up at the blue line which leads to Cooper Marody scoring his second, but that’s what happened. Then a few minutes later Max Willman hit the empty net again which made it 4-1.

Three Stars: 3) Sam Houde (goal) 2) Sam Ersson (25 saves) 1) Cooper Marody (two goals, assist)

The Good: Power play slaps.

The Bad: Sadly I don’t think the officials will allow you to play on said power play all night.

Turning Point: The Marody first goal was the backbreaker. It’s like when you play blocks with a child. You build up the blocks (in this case the big kill on the 5-on-3) and then the kid runs in the room and knocks down all the blocks, laughs and runs off. You feel like a dope for a sec. Well the Pens were the dope but the Phantoms weren’t playing around.

Around the Division: Charlotte 7-1 over Bridgeport…Rochester beats Hartford 8-4…Springfield doubles up Providence 6-3.

Standings: Hershey 75 – Providence 74 – Charlotte 71 – Springfield 68 – Lehigh Valley 64 – Bridgeport 60 – || – Hartford 58 – Penguins 55

Wheeling Update: Nailers are out in Fort Wayne as this blog goes up, box here.

Video Highlights:

Let’s Go Pens!

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