Chirps from Center Ice

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

GAMEDAY: @ Lehigh Valley 5/15

Who: Lehigh Valley Phantoms

Where: PPL Center

When: 7:05 p.m.

Last Game: Last Sunday in Allentown, the Pens lost 6-2. Felix Robert and Josh Currie scored for the Penguins. Lehigh Valley beat Binghamton 2-1 in Newark Wednesday. Zayde Wisdom assisted on both Phantoms goals. 

Last Meeting: Was last Sunday, recapped above. Brennan Saulnier scored a natural hat trick in the first period against the Penguins. The second time that has happened to Wilkes-Barre / Scranton this season.

Record: For WBS: 12-12-4-2 (30 pts.) — For LV: 18-7-3-1 (41 pts.)

Referees: Jordan Samuels-Thomas / Jeremy Tufts

Linesmen: John Rey / Jud Ritter

Why You Should Care: Thank god this farce of a forced season is almost over. 

Listen: Nick Hart on the call on WILK.

Watch: AHLTV

Remaining Game: @ HER 5/16

Six Game Streak Stopped in Allentown – Pens LOSE 6-2

Brennan Saulnier’s natural hat trick in the first period game the Lehigh Valley Phantoms all the momentum they needed as the Phantoms rolled past the Penguins 6-2 in Allentown Sunday.

Was out with my mother for a Mothers Day meal so didn’t catch any of the game. Doesn’t seem like the Penguins were competitive at all from the drop of the puck in this one. It happens. The season will be over in a week, with no playoffs really nothing to it.

The Hershey Bears could have won the division if the Penguins won today. They didn’t so the Bears have to wait.

Felix Robert and Josh Currie scored for the Penguins. Tommy Nappier stopped 20. His counterpart and thorn in the Penguins side Zane McIntyre stopped 29.

Penguins outshot the Phantoms 11-2 in the third. The Pens gave it away in the first and tried to get it back in the third. It didn’t work out that way with a good team like the Phantoms.

Back at it again in Allentown this Saturday before closing the books on 2021 in Hershey next Sunday.

Let’s Go Pens! Happy Mother’s Day!

GAMEDAY: @ Lehigh Valley 5/9

Who: Lehigh Valley Phantoms

Where: PPL Center

When: 3:05 p.m.

Last Game: Last night at home against Binghamton, the Penguins won 4-1. Nick Schilkey had a pair of goals and Tommy Nappier won his first game as a pro. Lehigh Valley played Hershey last night in Hershey and were shutout 3-0.

Last Meeting: April 28 in Wilkes-Barre, the Penguins won 2-1 in overtime. Tim Schaller had the game winner, Alex D’Orio stopped 41 shots on his birthday.

Record: For WBS: 12-11-4-2 (30 pts.) — For LV: 16-7-3-1 (37 pts.)

Referees:  Peter Schlittenhardt / Furman South

Linesmen: Tyler Loftus / J.P. Waleski

Why You Should Care: Penguins closed out their home set of the season and now have three road games with the first coming today in Allentown. Happy Mothers Day!

Listen: Nick Hart on the call on WILK.

Watch: AHLTV

Remaining Games: @ LV 5/15, @ HER 5/16

Schilkey Mitts — Pens WIN 4-1

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I’d like to thank Brad for the headline suggestion. Very creative.

Pens win their final home game of the 2021 season with a 4-1 win over Binghamton Saturday afternoon in the last ever game between the two cities. Seems like a no brainer win for the Pens, who were in control for a large part of the entire game.

Here is how they lined up:

First Period: They traded ten chances each. Devils had two power plays and the Penguins had one. Pens power play looked better than the Devils, for what it is worth.

Second Period: Pens break through when Nick Schilley comes screaming out of the penalty box at the net. Jon Gruden with the setup and it’s 1-0 Penguins about halfway through. 

Tommy Nappier looked a lot more confident in net from last game as well, making some difficult saves look easy. 

Third Period: With the issue still in a little bit of doubt, Nick Schilkey slotted home his second of the game with a power play goal that made it 2-0. This seemingly put things out of reach for Binghamton, who weren’t going to come back after that.

In case there was any doubt, Anthony Angello turned on the jets and scored on a great individual effort that made it 3-0.

Napier’s would be shutout bid was broken up when Graeme Clarke came in on a three on one and beat the rookie from The Ohio State University to get the Devils on the board.

Binghamton immediately turned their goalie and Jon Gruden scored on the empty net to make it 4-1. A Gordie Howe hat trick for Gruden with a fight earlier as well as an assist.

Three Stars: 3) Tommy Nappier (22 saves) 2) Jon Gruden (goal, assist) 1) Nick Schilkey (two goals)

The Good: Binghamton is bad, but that was a good win.

The Bad: Nitpicking, but it would have been nice if they parked the bus late and tried to preserve a shutout for Nappier which would have been the first of the season.

They are back at it Sunday in Allentown against the Phantoms.

Let’s Go Pens! Stay safe.

GAMEDAY: vs. Binghamton 5/8

vs. 

Who: Binghamton Devils

Where: Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza

When: 5:00 p.m.

Last Game: Wednesday at home against Binghamton, the Penguins doubled up the Devils 6-3. Anthony Angello and Josh Currie led the way with two goals and an assist each. Tyce Thompson had a goal and an assist in the loss. On Friday, the Devils hosted Hershey and lost 2-1. Reilly Walsh had a goal for the Devils in the loss.

Last Meeting: Was this past Wednesday, described above.

Record: For WBS: 11-11-4-2 (28 pts.) — For BNG: 6-17-5-2 (20 pts.)

Referees: Peter Schlittenhardt / Furman South

Linesmen: Colin Gates / J.P. Waleski

Why You Should Care: Last ever meeting between Wilkes-Barre and Binghamton today. The Devils are moving operations up north to Utica. Also, Alex D’Orio was recalled, so look for Tommy Nappier to be in the barrel today for the Penguins.

Listen: Nick Hart on the call on WILK.

Watch: AHLTV

Remaining Games: @ LV 5/9, @ LV 5/15, @ HER 5/16

Half of Six is Three, .500 — Pens WIN 6-3

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They are .500 after a 6-3 win over the Binghamton Devils. Nice resurgence, but even if there were playoffs (there aren’t) they wouldn’t be in a position to qualify with the amount of games left.

They are coming together. Hope that there is some carryover come the Fall. I’m ready for this to be over already.

Here’s how they lined up:

Kasper Bjorkqvist made his season debut.

First Period: Bingo got on the board first, but then the Pens rattle off two straight. Here they are in GIF form. Note that the Robert goal was switched to Jordy Bellerive, who is having a nice season with his tenth goal.

Again, Bellerive’s goal. Robert never touched it.

The Devils are a mess, but nice to see a short handed goal.

Second Period: I am sure the instructions Anthony Angello was sent back with from Pittsburgh was to fill up the score sheet at every opportunity.

Exhibit A:

Bingo was hanging around though and drew back to within one with this busted tic tag toe play.

Josh Currie with his second on a nifty redirect and the Pens re-establish their two goal lead:

Third Period: Penguins get a power play to go early in the third when Tim Schaller connects here.

Ever resilient, Tyce Thompson gets the Devils within two with this goal here.

The Devils pulled the goalie for the extra attacker and the Penguins spent the remainder of the game trying to shoot and score from their own zone. They missed, constantly. It was quite hilarious. Finally Anthony Angello beats out an icing call (they weren’t coming anywhere close to the net) and got one to go for the 6-3 score that held.

Three Stars: 3) Jordy Bellerive (goal, assist) 2) Anthony Angello (two goals, assist) 1) Josh Currie (two goals, assist)

The Good: The leadership group in Currie and Angello had good nights and the rest of the team followed. Just like they drew it up.

The Bad: Binghamton is bad, and yet there was a sense until you looked up at the clock an realized there wasn’t a lot of time left that they probably weren’t going to make the comeback. But the thought always stayed with you.

Turning Point: Schaller’s power play blast to open the third period scoring gave the Penguins the insurance they needed.

They are back in action Saturday against Binghamton for the final time ever. The Devils are moving out of Binghamton and up to Utica and the Canucks are moving their affiliate out of Utica and to Abbotsford. There’s Board of Governor’s meeting Thursday which will most likely formalize all of this. My guess is you will get something on divisional alignments as well so maybe I will be here then to talk about that. No promises, though.

Let’s Go Pens and all that.

Stay safe.

GAMEDAY: vs. Binghamton 5/5

vs. 

Who: Binghamton Devils

Where: Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza

When: 7:00 p.m.

Last Game: Saturday at home against Hershey the Pens were narrowly defeated 4-3 in overtime. Sam Miletic had a goal and an assist in the loss. For Binghamton, the Devils beat Lehigh Valley 4-2. Mason Jobst had a hand in every goal, scoring two and assisting on two others.

Last Meeting: April 30 in Newark, the Penguins won 3-1. Alex D’Orio had 23 saves for the win.

Record: For WBS: 10-11-4-2 (26 pts.) — For BNG: 6-15-5-2 (20 pts.)

Referees: Mike Dietrich / Conor O’Donnell

Linesmen: Ryan Knapp / Tyler Loftus

Why You Should Care: A chance to get to .500 tonight for the Penguins with a win tonight over Binghamton. Expect the debut of Kasper Bjorkqvist to make his debut for the Pens tonight after rejoining the team from his stint overseas.

Listen: Nick Hart on the call on WILK.

Watch: AHLTV

Remaining Games: vs. BNG 5/8, @ LV 5/9, @ LV 5/15, @ HER 5/16