Chirps from Center Ice

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

Category Archives: WBS

McIntyre-d — Pens LOSE 5-2


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As I was stewing over a bad loss this afternoon by the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins at the tail end of a three in three, a tweet by Penguins beat writer Tyler Picotti shed some light on the current situation that the Penguins are in.

Now while I agree that back to back three in three weekends is bad scheduling, as you will see in a minute, the Penguins didn’t make any lineup changes and but for a swap on the fourth line Saturday, only one change all weekend to your forward corps.

Yes, Providence did play the same amount of three in three games (they were in Bridgeport last night) and yes, both teams didn’t have to travel far Saturday (Bridgeport and Hartford are not that far from Providence) so maybe the same 11 forwards that played all weekend just didn’t have it today.

The scoreline and shot board would indicate, Penguins fall 5-2.

Tristan Jarry opposed Zane McIntyre.

Lines were…

Lineup Notes: There were none. The Penguins used the same lineup that they did Saturday night in Hartford.

First Period: Terrible start by the Penguins who were outshot 17-3 in the period and had two goal scored on them in the process.

Ryan Donato on this wraparound attempt on the Bruins third power play of the game resulting from a puck over the glass penalty…

Donato beat Chris Summers there, but the Penguins were just overall watching.

Then Martin Bakos scored in a scramble play in front of Jarry where the puck got past the Penguins net minder a few times and off the post but not in the net…

Shots were 17-3 Bruins after the first period. It was a scatterbrain start for the Pens and it put them in a hole early heading into the…

Second Period: Bad to worse for the Penguins, who see the Bruins double their lead in the period.

Zach Senyshyn scored on a busted line change that made it 3-0.

Just walked in behind the D and scored.

Bruins connect on yet another power play goal as Joel Messner scored his first goal of the season that made it 4-0.

Shots at some point were 27-4 Providence. The Penguins were getting shellacked. No gap control, just letting the Bruins forwards walk all alone on them. Tristan Jarry could not be to blame for the scoreline.

Third Period: Penguins started on a carryover 5-on-3 power play from the second period but Providence’s penalty kill is tops in the AHL and the Bruins have yet to rear a power play goal against at home this season. Pens had some good looks, but the Bruins killed it all off.

Two goals a minute apart brought the Penguins to within two.

Derek Grant here on a nice setup by Tobias Lindberg…

…and Anthony Angello off of a gaffe by McIntyre to make it 4-2.

McIntyre stopped Jarrett Burton off of the next face-off, otherwise things could have gotten really weird in Providence.

Ryan Donato scores on his own rebound to put the Penguins hopes of a comeback on ice and makes it 5-2.


Final shots were 39-22 Bruins, who dominated from the drop of the puck, got cute at the half way point of the third period and nearly let it slip on them, but found the gas and got a put away goal by Donato to cap off a five point weekend.

Three Stars: 3) Ryan Donato (two goals) 2) Zach Senyshyn (goal, assist) and 1) Colby Cave (two assists)

Around the Division: Hershey got smashed in Syracuse Sunday evening and lost 7-2. The Crunch scored four power play goals. The only other teams in action in the Atlantic were Charlotte and Bridgeport who played each other today in Connecticut. The Sound Tigers won that game 4-2 for a perfect five game home stand.

Standings: Charlotte 22 — Bridgeport 19 — Springfield 16 — Lehigh Valley 16 — Penguins 16 — Hershey 15 — Hartford 13 — Providence 12

Wheeling Update: The Nailers play a kids day game on Tuesday against Toledo.

Highlights: Bruins didn’t have them Friday, so unless the Penguins tweet one like they did Saturday after the Hartford game, don’t expect them but if you check back later for the finals and standings look, check here anyway.

Wilkes-Barre is staying in Providence for a few more days until heading to Springfield for a Wednesday morning game against the Thunderbirds at 10:30. That means that the Gameday setup hits the blog here bright and early at 6:30 a.m. Wednesday morning.

Let’s Go Pens!

GAMEDAY: @ Providence 11/11


Who: Providence Bruins

Where: Dunkin’ Donuts Center

When: 3:05 p.m.

Last Game: Last night in Hartford, the Penguins explode for three goals in the first 4:31 of the game and ride a 31 save performance from Anthony Peters to beat the Wolf Pack 4-1…For Providence, the Bruins were in Bridgeport last night and lost 5-4. Colby Cave and Ryan Fitzgerald both had a pair of assists.

Last Meeting: This past Friday in Providence, the Penguins lost 2-1 in overtime. Sam Lafferty had the goal for the Penguins, Ryan Fitzgerald scored the overtime game winner.

Record: For WBS: 7-4-1-1 (16 pts., 5th place Atlantic Division) // For PRO: 4-7-2-0 (10 pts., 8th place Atlantic Division)

Referee(s): Brandon Blandina / Jason Williams

Linesmen: Jeremy Lovett / Jared Waitt

Why You Should Care: Penguins left a lot in Providence and I think the hot start in Hartford last night showed that. Expect a better effort this afternoon in Providence as the Penguins look to close out the three in three strong.

Listen: Nick Hart on the call on WILK.

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

Other Game to Watch: Charlotte travels to Bridgeport in a battle of two really offensively potent AHL teams.

Next Five Games: @ SPR 11/14, vs. CHA 11/16, vs. CHA 11/17, @ SPR 11/23, vs. HER 11/24

Hot Start; Strong Finish — Pens WIN 4-1


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I am sure you have seen your fair share of hockey games where the team jumps out to a three or four goal lead early on in the first period only to have the other team methodically claw their way back and maybe even win the game.

The setup was there Saturday night in Hartford, but it never came to fruition and the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins score Three goals in the first 4:31 of the game and coast to an easy 4-1 win over the Hartford Wolf Pack.

The Penguins simply needed to score the first goal of the game tonight, whether it was three in the first five minutes of the game or with three seconds left in regulation, they just had to get the first goal first. Playing from behind has been a bit you a challenge.

Thomas DiPauli made sure of that. DiPauli scored his first goal of the season and added two assists in a fine game from the Penguins winger. Anthony Peters also needed a strong game after getting shellacked in his last outing last Sunday in Bridgeport where he was pulled after the first period.

Anthony Peters opposed Dustin Tokarski.

Lines were…

Lineup Notes: Patrick McGrath for Ryan Horvat on the fourth line. That was it. Defense pairings and line pairings were the same as they were Friday in Providence.

First Period: Three goals in the first 4:31. A hot start for the Penguins and a needed one at that, given the playing from behind that the Penguins have been doing in the past five games.

1:50 in, Thomas DiPauli scored when Will O’Neill held a puck onside, put a shot on net that was redirected away by Tokarski, but recovered by Anthony Angello who centered to DiPauli for the goal.

Less than two minutes later, Derek Grant scored to double the Penguins lead. He won a race to a puck and threw a puck on net that was redirected in inadvertently by Hartford defenseman Rob O’Gara and in.

Penguins add a third when Teddy Blueger threw a puck into a scrum and it got by Tokarski to make it 3-0 Wilkes-Barre.

What a start indeed, Taylor.

Anyway, Hartford head coach Keith McCambridge called timeout which settled his club a bit as the Wolf Pack didn’t allow another Penguin goal for the remainder of the period.

Wilkes-Barre had a pair of cracks on the power play but could not convert.

Second Period: Wolf Pack connect on a power play at the half way point of the period when Tim Gettinger put home a rebound of a John Gilmour shot from the point that got Hartford on the board and back to within two goals.

Just a little over a minute later, Teddy Blueger was behind the Hartford net when he pulled off a spin-o-rama pass to a cutting Jimmy Hayes who scored to re-establish the Penguins three goal lead.

Penguins had a power play late and set up a firing squad at Tokarski, but the Wolf Pack goaltender was able to turn away all of the would be chances.

Third Period: Anthony Peters stopped all 13 Hartford shots in the period. Some big stops on Tim Gettinger, on his stomach flopping in the crease to preserve the three goal lead for the Penguins. Derek Grant had two breakaways in the period but were not able to score on either.

Three Stars:

Thought that Anthony Peters deserved a star, stopping 31 of 32 shots. He did collect an assist on Derek Grant’s goal though, his first point in the AHL.

Around the Division: Bridgeport beats Providence 5-4 in overtime. Chris Bourque surpassed 700 points in the AHL….Hershey beats a suddenly slumping Springfield Thunderbirds team 3-2….Charlotte beats Lehigh Valley 7-4.

Standings: Charlotte 22 — Bridgeport 17 — Springfield 16 — Lehigh Valley 16 — Penguins 16 — Hershey 13 — Hartford 13 — Providence 10

Wheeling Update: The Nailers lose in overtime 3-2 to the Greenville Swamp Rabbits. Troy Josephs had a goal for the Nailers in the loss.

Highlights: Coal Street quick on them tonight.

Penguins head back to Providence tonight for a 3 p.m. start with the Bruins Sunday. Gameday setup will hit the blog at 11 a.m. Sunday morning.

Let’s Go Pens!

GAMEDAY: @ Hartford 11/10


Who: Hartford Wolf Pack

Where: XL Center

When: 7:00 p.m.

Last Game: Last night in Providence, the Pens got a late goal by Sam Lafferty to force overtime but lost on a power play goal 2-1 to the Bruins. Ford Hartford, the Wolf Pack were in Utica Friday and lost 4-3 in a shootout. Ville Meskanen had two goals.

Last Meeting: Last Saturday in Wilkes-Barre, the Penguins lost 3-2. Zach Trotman and Sam Lafferty scored for the Penguins; Steven Fogarty had a pair of goals for Hartford.

Record: For WBS: 6-4-1-1 (14 pts., 5th place Atlantic Division) // For HFD: 5-7-1-2 (13 pts., 7th place Atlantic Division)

Referee(s): Jordan Deckard / Furman South

Linesmen: Tyson Baker / Kyle Richetelle

Why You Should Care: Last night was the start, tonight is first goal. The Penguins have given up the first goal in the last four contests coming into Saturday’s game. They didn’t a lot of things right defensively last night in Providence, now it is about getting the offense put together for a hopeful win in Hartford.

Listen: Nick Hart on the call on WILK.

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

Other Game to Watch: Lehigh Valley crushed Springfield last night 8-2. They welcome the Charlotte Checkers, who were upset last night in Binghamton. This should be an interesting matchup.

Next Five Games: @ PRO 11/11, @ SPR 11/14, vs. CHA 11/16, vs. CHA 11/17, @ SPR 11/23

A Point in Providence — Pens LOSE 2-1 (OT)


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After a 13 goal explosion in Bridgeport Sunday, the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins needed to tighten things up.

Success defensively. They allowed the opponent, tonight it was the Providence Bruins, just one goal in regulation on a busted tic-tac-toe play on a power play.

But, the offense sputtered at times with Bruins starting goaltender Dan Vladar stymying the Penguins with save after save after save, until Sam Lafferty struck with under five minutes to play to tie the game to force overtime.

Overtime was run and gun, as you would expect when you remove two skaters and go three on three, and the Bruins strike on a power play goal and take a 2-1 overtime decision from the Penguins Friday night.

Baby steps. The Pens lost their two leading scorers in Zach Aston-Reese and Garrett Wilson to recall to a sputtering Pittsburgh Penguins team earlier in the week. Perhaps the best team for the Penguins to face was the last place in the Atlantic Providence Bruins.

Tristan Jarry opposed the aforementioned Vladar.

Lines were…

Lineup Notes: With Garrett Wilson and Zach Aston-Reese in Pittsburgh, the forward lines were shuffled top to bottom. Johnson-Grant-Hayes was a new top line….Jarrett Burton replaced Aston-Reese on the second line with Lafferty and Haggerty….DiPauli moves up to the third line w/ Blueger & Angelo and Ryan Horvat jumped back in and Ölund drops from 1C to 4C w/ Lindberg.

On defense, there were new defensive pairings there as well. Czuczman and Elliott; Summers / O’Neill and Abt (for Taylor) with Prow.

Injury wise, Nick Hart mentioned that Zach Trotman is week to week with a lower body injury.

First Period:  Penguins were aggressive off the hop on their first shift; Ryan Haggerty flipped a puck in from center ice, Sam Lafferty tracked it down from behind the net and centered to Haggerty who put a good shot on Vladar.

Wilkes-Barre would take an offensive zone penalty and the Providence power play made them pay on a nice tic-tac-toe scoring play that Martin Bakos finished that game the Bruins a 1-0 lead.

Ryan Fitzgerald to Jan Kovar to Bakos for the goal. Pens lost a mini scrum along the near wall there. Fourth straight game where the opponent scores first.

The Pens weren’t able to score on a late power play and it was noted on the broadcast that the Bruins were perfect going into tonight’s game on opponents penalty kills at home (12/12) – the Pens had a few late looks but could not solve Vladar.

Second Period: No scoring in the period, but loads of action. Bruins started with some early action, then Anthony Angello was denied in the high slot via a glove save by Vladar.

Then Ryan Horvat was chasing down a puck that was dying on an icing call and hit Emil Johansson. The initial call was a boarding call, but Trent Frederic, who was wreaking shop on the Pens prior to this, took it upon himself to fight Horvat.

Frederic picked up an instigating minor, a fighting major and a ten minute misconduct.

More heavy pressure from both teams as the period winded down, but neither goaltender blinked. A goalie battle was a-bruin’ in Providence.

Third Period: If the Penguins would have scored on a power play here which would have been the first goal scored by a visiting team on a power play against the Bruins, that would have carried more headlines. Penguins had three chances and were not able to score.

Sam Lafferty stripped Wiley Sherman at his own blue line and scored to tie the game late.

Penguins had a late power play which bled over to…

Overtime: I think I will Periscope overtime road games as long as I am able, like I did here…

You will see there that the Penguins weren’t able to score on the carryover power play time and that Tobias Lindberg takes a cross checking call. Bruins head coach Jay Leach calls time out, Providence keeps it in and in and in on the power play before Ryan Fitzgerald or Cody Goloubef scored to give the Bruins the extra point.

Here it is in a tweet:

Three Stars: 3) Dan Vladar (27 saves on 28 shots) 2) Martin Bakos (goal) and 1) Ryan Fitzgerald (overtime game winning goal, assist)

Around the Division: Lehigh Valley obliterates Springfield 8-2 in Allentown…Utica beats Hartford at home 4-3 in a shootout…Binghamton drops Charlotte 4-3 on the Southern Tier. Hershey and Bridgeport had the night off.

Standings: Charlotte 20 — Springfield 16 — Lehigh Valley 16 — Bridgeport 15 — Penguins 14 — Hershey 13 — Hartford 13 — Providence 9

Wheeling Update: Nailers crush Greenville in West Virginia 5-1. Renars Krastenbergs, Cam Brown and Troy Josephs were some of the goal scorers for the Nailers. Johnny Muse stopped 17 of 18.

I doubt Providence will have any highlights package, since they don’t even have a broadcaster, only one camera at the Dunkin Donuts Center and get by on the bare minimum as an AHL franchise. But if I see one, I will tweet it here.

Pens are staying in Providence till Tuesday. They are going to Hartford tomorrow. That Gameday setup will be here on the blog for you at 3 p.m. Saturday.

Let’s Go Pens!

GAMEDAY @ Providence 11/9


Who: Providence Bruins

Where: Dunkin’ Donuts Center

When: 7:05 p.m.

Last Game: Sunday in Bridgeport, the Penguins lost 8-5 in a wild, run and gun affair. Zach Aston-Reese had a hat trick, captain Garrett Wilson had a Gordie Howe hat trick. For Providence, the Bruins were in Charlotte last weekend and lost 3-2 to the Checkers last Saturday. Peter Cehlarik ad Ryan Fitzgerald scored goals for the Bruins in the loss.

Record: For WBS: 6-4-0-1 (13 pts., 5th place Atlantic Division) // For PRO: 3-7-1-0 (7 pts., 8th place Atlantic Division)

Referee(s): Jordan Deckard / Furman South

Linesmen: Chris Millea / Kevin Keenan

Why You Should Care: The start. The Penguins in their last three games have started poor and it has cost them two of the last three games. They cannot underestimate a last place Providence Bruins team, either.

Listen: Nick Hart on the call on WILK.

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

Other Game to Watch: Springfield travels to Allentown to take on the Phantoms. These are two high flying, offensive teams.

Next Five Games: @ HFD 11/10, @ PRO 11/11, @ SPR 11/14, vs. CHA 11/16, vs. CHA 11/17

Run and Gun, Not So Much Fun — Pens LOSE 8-5


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I said this in my Friday game recap after the first period of action against Hartford when it was 2-2 after 20 minutes of play…

Four goals in 10:50. The Penguins don’t like to play run and gun and would lose more than they would win playing that style, so the game at that point needed to slow down for success to occur.

An 8-5 setback in Bridgeport Sunday afternoon / evening. More like evening, despite the game ending at quarter to six on Sunday. It’s dark now. It didn’t start getting dark until 8:30 just a few weeks ago. Summer is a distant memory…


The run and gun style is not the style that the Penguins can play with any kind of success, they just don’t have the firepower up front to get it all to click at one time in one game. Sound Tigers go up 4-1 after the first Sunday, were up 7-1 at one point in the second period before the Penguins claw back in the third when the game was well decided.

Credit the Penguins for not giving up, not rolling over, not getting injured. They lost Zach Trotman at some point to an injury early in the second but ran out of time in trying to mount anything close to a comeback. It’s a weird game because the Penguins will win 90% of the games where they score at least five goals, but giving up four in the first to an opponent, facing a seven goal deficit to the opponent at some point in the game and no team anywhere is going to have success against their opponent.

So where do we go from here, 1-2 on the weekend? The start. The start for the Penguins both games Saturday and Sunday has been less than stellar. Nick Hart on radio hyped up the Penguins being, “ready” for the Sound Tigers and Ryan Haggerty talking about, “showtime” as he stepped off of the bus Sunday morning.

Haggerty was held without a point and was a -2.

But I am not picking on Haggerty. The Penguins simply were not ready to play today, down 3-0 before the half way point of the game. Anthony Peters got the start for Wilkes-Barre / Scranton but was relieved by Tristan Jarry in the second period onward. The Penguins are not going to want to have Jarry or Peters or whoever it is appear in three straight games back-to-back-to-back, The starts have been poor, (going down 2-0 in the first 12 minutes Saturday; the run and gun in the first Friday) and they need to improve, quickly.

Silver linings were Zach Aston-Reese’s hat trick and assist, Garrett Wilson’s three point (2-1) game and Ethan Prow’s three assist as Prow remains one of the best defensemen in the AHL. The Penguins connected on three power play goals.

Ask yourself this question. Would you rather lose 8-5 or win 8-5 but at some point cough up a six goal lead?

Game story after the jump because it’s going to be a lengthy one on your browser or phone if you didn’t link in direct.

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