Chirps from Center Ice

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

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GAMEDAY: vs. Providence 11/25


Who: Providence Bruins

Where: Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza

When: 3:05 p.m.

Last Game: Last night at home against Hershey, the Pens lost 3-2. John Muse made his WBS debut and stopped 31 shots. For Providence, the Bruins were in Allentown last night taking on the Phantoms and went down 2-0 before the game was 70 seconds old and won 6-3. Austin Fyten and Cameron Hughes both scored two goals.

Last Meeting: November 11 in Providence, the Pens lost 5-2. Anthony Angello and Derek Grant connected for the goals for the Pens and Ryan Donato scored two for Providence.

Record: For WBS: 8-7-3-1 (20 pts., 6th place Atlantic Division) // For PRO: 7-8-3-0 17 pts., 8th place Atlantic Division)

Referee(s): Jason Faist / Alex Garon

Linesmen: Bob Goodman / Ryan Knapp

Why You Should Care: Penguins, I get the sense from last night, were not impressed with the way that they played against Hershey in a losing effort. I get the sense that the last place Providence Bruins are coming in as a wolf in sheeps clothing and that he Pens need to take very seriously their opponent today. I don’t want to say that anything in November is must win, but today surely feels like it, with last night’s performance still fresh in our minds.

Listen: Nick Hart on the call on WILK.

Watch: AHLTV is new and improved and a lot cheaper.

Promotion(s): Kids Free Sunday (Fans 14 and younger are free with paid adult ticket)

Other Game to Watch: Springfield heads to Bridgeport to take on the Sound Tigers at 3 Sunday.

Next Five Games: @ HER 11/28, @ RCH 11/30, @ TOR 12/1, vs. CLE 12/7, vs. BRI 12/8

Join My Team

EDIT: This idea went over like a lead balloon. Had a lot of people window shop, but no one walked through the door. Disregard the entire post…

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GAMEDAY: vs. Lehigh Valley 4/12


vs.     lv14

Home Game: 36

AHL Game: 1085

Who: Lehigh Valley Phantoms

Where: Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza

When: 7:05 p.m.

Media Kit

Last Game: Sunday in Providence, the Penguins wrapped up the Atlantic Division Championship and beat the P-Bruins 2-1. Cody Wydo and Jarrett Burton scored for the Penguins and Casey DeSmith stopped 33 of 34. For Lehigh Valley, the Phantoms were last in action Saturday and beat the Springfield Thunderbirds at home 4-2. Corbnan Knight had a goal and an assist as did Andy Miele.

Last Meeting: This past Friday in Allentown, the Penguins shutout the Phantoms for the third consecutive game in a row by a 3-0 score. Tristan Jarry stopped all 21 shots sent his way and Oskar Sundqvist scored two goal and notched an assist.

Record: For WBS: 50-19-3-1 (104 pts., 1st place Atlantic Division) — For LV: 45-23-5-0 (95 pts., 2nd place Atlantic Division)

Why you should care: In the regular season, these last three games are meaningless for the Penguins. They have already wrapped up a playoff spot, the division championship and home ice throughout the first three rounds of the playoffs if they get that far. Wilkes-Barre may dress a much more inexperienced lineup to give the regulars a rest. Lehigh Valley still has a lot to play for, having not yet secured a playoff spot. But can they score a goal?

Referee(s): Evgenii Romasko / Terry Koharski

Linesmen: Ryan Daisy / Jud Ritter

Twitter: @WBSPenguins and @WBSGameDay / @LVPhantoms

Facebook: /WilkesBarreScrantonPenguins / /LehighValleyPhantoms

Instagram: wbspenguins / lehighvalleyphantoms

Beat Writers: @CVSethLakso and @TomVenesky / @SteveGrossMCall

Broadcasters: WBS: Mike O’Brien @MikeOBrienWBS and @_NickHart / For Lehigh Valley: Bob Rotruck @BobRotruck

Fan Bloggers: @nafsnep / @KRAM209

Radio: For WBS: WILK Newsradio / For Lehigh Valley: Fox 1470

Television: AHL Live 

Promotion(s): None.

Other Game to Watch: Charlotte visits Grand Rapids in a key Central Division battle. The Checkers are pushing for a playoff spot, the Griffins are pushing for a Central Division Championship.

Remaining Games: vs. HER 4/14, vs. BRI 4/15

Blog of the Year Nomination

The fine folks that coordinate the NEPA BlogCon are handing out their yearly Blog of the Year Awards. 

This blog, Chirps from Center Ice, was nominated again. First, I’d like to thank you for nominating the blog again. I don’t nominate myself. 

Click here to be brought to the voting page. There are other categories to vote on also. Chirps from Center Ice is under the, “Best Sports Blog” category. 

Thank you.

Schedule Soon, Other Notes

Real quick one today.

The NBA has their schedule, so the AHL can start finalizing theirs. The NBA announced their schedule last week, so I would expect that the AHL will have their schedule by the end of this week.

No rush. I am enjoying the summertime.

Out the door, Clark Seymour and James Melindy have new homes. Seymour was a little used defensive fill-in and Melindy was a throw in for the Dustin Jeffrey trade that never played a game in Wilkes-Barre. Seymour signed with HC Bolzano in the EBEL and Melindy signed with Wichita in the ECHL.

So there is that. I updated the 2016 Offseason Moves List and put one last edit in on the big board, which as you see if you didn’t link in direct is no longer pinned to the top of the site. You have to scroll down now if you didn’t bookmark.

Will probably drop a line here again when the “schedule is coming tomorrow” announcement is made. An announcement about an announcement!

Go outside and jump in the pool while you still can!

They’re Going the Distance…

The Hershey Bears got all the offense they needed in the first period of Game 4 tonight and force a decisive Game 5 with a 2-0 win tonight at home tonight against the Portland Pirates.

So the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins opponent, and schedule for said opponent, will need to wait another day.

The winner take all Game 5 goes off from Hershey Sunday at 5.

Pearls Before Quine — Pens LOSE 5-2

BRI         vs.         WBS

5                                              2

I called the Sound Tigers, ‘dastardly’ in this afternoons Gameday setup on the blog.

Name me three teams that you don’t want to face come playoff time. Hershey is one, Toronto is one and likely Providence the other. You are forgetting about Bridgeport. Something about this Sound Tigers team gives the Penguins fits.

The Pens put 40 shots up on Sound Tigers goalie Chris Gibson tonight and still lost. It wasn’t even close. Here was a tweet that summed up the night, pretty much…

Pens couldn’t do anything with the presence that they had in the offensive zone. Every shot was blocked. Every pass deflected. Every would be shot stopped by Gibson.

One of those nights.

The Penguins lost 5-2 to the Sound Tigers. With Portland, in tomorrow, beating Hartford tonight, the magic number drops to two. A win of any kind Sunday by Wilkes-Barre and they are in.

Tristan Jarry started his ninth consecutive game and was pulled after two periods when the score was 4-0 and well out of reach for the Penguins. Not for nothing, head coach Clark Donatelli tried different line combinations and replaced Jarry in net with Brian Foster. Foster’s only blemish was a puck that got away from him from behind his net that caromed to James Wright which at the time made it 5-1. Dominik Simon scored :32 into the third to cut the lead to 4-1.

The damage was done in the second period. The Penguins, already trailing 1-0 after the first period on an Alan Quine rebound he followed on a Sound Tigers power play, saw Bridgeport score three times.

And it was probably the best period that the Penguins played.

Quine added his second goal of the game finishing a nice cross ice pass from Mike Halmo that made it 2-0.

Quine completed the natural hat trick when he busted by three Penguins watching him and threw a seemingly weak backhanded shot at Jarry that hit the bar and went in for a 3-0 lead.

The Penguins, frustrated by what the Sound Tigers were giving them, couldn’t score on the periods only power play then saw a shot get blocked which led to a rush the other way for the Sound Tigers and a goal when a Pat Nullity shot from the blue line hit Connor Jones on the way in for a 4-0 Bridgeport lead.

The rout was on. If playoffs started today, the Penguins would be facing off against Bridgeport in the opening round. The Sound Tigers went 5-1 against the Penguins in the seasons series.

Mattias Plachta scored his first as a Penguin on a nice wrist shot late in the third with the game already decided. Donatelli used his time out to draw something up with Foster pulled but the Penguins could not get any closer.

Three Stars: 3) Connor Jones (goal, assist, +2) 2) James Wright (goal, two assists, +2) and 1) Alan Quine (natural hat trick, +2)

Around the Division: Hershey sees the first two shots against go in, fall behind 2-0 at Providence but come back and win in a shootout 4-3. The reverse of what happened here tonight in Wilkes-Barre happened up in Providence, the Bears won with just 18 shots on goal to Providence’s 38….Albany lost to Springfield 5-4. Ex-Penguin Matia Marcantuoni scored the game winning goal for the Falcons in the win. Marcantuoni was dealt in the trade which got the Pens Plachta. So both trade pieces score first goals for their respective teams. Nice….Lehigh Valley blanked St. John’s 4-0, the Phantoms were officially eliminated from playoffs tonight…Portland beats Hartford 4-1 which drops the Penguins magic number to 2.

Standings: Hershey (.645) — Penguins (.630) — Bridgeport (.601) — Providence (.601) — Portland (.587) — Hartford (.550) — Lehigh Valley (.493) — Springfield (.406)

Wheeling Update: The Nailers won a big one tonight over the Manchester Monarchs by a score of 2-1.

I’ll post any visual candy from Coal Street if they publish it in a morning edit.

Portland in tomorrow at 4. Gameday setup Sunday at noon.

Oh, if you are wondering where the pun headline came from, it’s a play on the term, “Pearls Before Swine” which has a biblical meaning and is also my favorite comic strip. I consider Stephan Pastis (also a big fan of puns himself) one of the greatest thinkers of our time.

Let’s Go Pens!