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Phantoms Go Down To Wire With Penguins





December 4, 2010





Wilkes-Barre, PA-The Adirondack Phantoms battled down to the wire with the top team in the AHL but ended up falling to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins 3-2 in an exciting Saturday night game at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza. Eric Wellwood (6th) and Ben Holmstrom (5th) scored the goals in the hard-fought effort for the Phantoms.

Michael Leighton was stellar in goal particularly for the first 55 minutes of the contest. The Pens scored two goals in the game's closing five minutes breaking a 1-1 tie to improve to an AHL best 20-4-0 on the season.

The game was the first of a two game conditioning stint for Leighton with the Phantoms as he is recovering from back surgery from early October. Leighton certainly did not look like a player getting his first game action of the season and appeared to be quite sharp throughout. Leighton turned aside 26 Penguins shots on the night including 14 out of 15 in the first period.

It was Leighton's first game in the AHL since 2007-08 when he played for the Albany River Rats (28-25-4, 2.10, .931). It was his first game in a Phantoms jersey since 2006-07 when he played in five games for the Philadelphia Phantoms (2-0-2, 1.56, .948).

Eric Wellwood got the Phantoms on the board 8 minutes into the opening period converting on a 2-on-1 rush with Andrew Rowe. Wellwood took the pass on the strong side and flipped the puck backwards between his legs going five-hole on Wilkes-Barre/Scranton goalie John Curry to give Adirondack a 1-0. His highlight-reel goal was the 6th of the year for the 20 year old rookie out of Windsor, Ontario and his first since returning to the Phantoms following his second call-up to Philadelphia.

Dustin Jeffrey ripped a laser from the left-wing circle ringing off the far post behind Leighton to tie the game at 1-1 at the 18:00 mark of the first. It was Jeffrey's 13th of the year to lead the Penguins.

Leighton was especially solid in the first period in turning away 14 of 15 Penguins shots to keep the Phantoms in the game. The scoreless duel would continue through the the second but the Phantoms were not without their chances. Greg Moore had multiple opportunities to score including one shot late in the period that appeared to bounce of the helmet of Curry.

The game would remain 1-1 until the closing minutes of the 3rd period when Tim Wallace would dangle up the right wing and blast a low shot past the right skate of Leighton to give the Pens a 2-1 lead. Less than two minutes later, Eric Tangredi would pick up a carom off the end boards on the left-wing side and flip one towards the net banking it in off of the back skate of Leighton making the score 3-1.

Adirondack would make it a one goal game with 1:40 left on the power play and with a pulled goalie for an extra attacker. Denis Hamel blasted a shot from the right wing circle and Ben Holmstrom deflected the puck on the short side of the net and into the goal for the 6-on-4 tally to pull the Phantoms to within one again at 3-2. The Phantoms were able to pull Leighton again and get a couple more shots on Curry but weren't able to get the equalizer allowing the Penguins to escape with the win.

The Phantoms had dominated play for much of the 3rd period as they outshot the Penguins 12-4. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton outshot Adirondack 29-24. The Phantoms were 1-for-3 on the power play while they held the Penguins to 0-for-4.

Adirondack continues their road trip Sunday afternoon in Atlantic City against the Albany Devils in a 4:00 encounter. It is the third meeting of the 12 game Time Warner Cable Cup rivalry with the season series currently knotted at 1-1.

Adirondack's next home is Saturday, December 11 against the Portland Pirates featuring the team's first annual Teddy Bear Toss. Fans get to bring their teddy bear donations for the Salvation Army to the game and throw them on the ice after the Phantoms score their first goal.

Bring a new toy or non-perishable food item to the Phantoms office for a free ticket for an upcoming Phantoms game on either Wednesday, December 15 or Friday, December 17. All our donations go to the Salavation Army to benefit needy kids and families in the North Country.

Upcoming Phantoms Home Games:
Saturday, December 11 vs. Portland Pirates: Teddy Bear Toss
Wednesday, December 15 vs. Connecticut Whale: Check it Out Night (ticket discount with your library card)
Friday, December 17 vs. Hershey Bears: Dollar Dog Night
Saturday, December 18 vs. Abbotsford Heat: Papa John's T-Shirt Giveaway (first 2500 fans)

Don't be left out! Tickets for all Phantoms games are on sale now. Discount rates are available for groups of 15 or more. Save off the individual ticket price by asking the Phantoms about their great group rate packages.

The AHL is celebrating their 75th anniversary season and is the top development league for the NHL. More than 85 percent of today's NHL players are American Hockey League graduates and more than 6 million fans attend AHL games every year.

Get your tickets at the Phantoms office inside the Glens Falls Civic Center, online at ticketmaster.com, or by calling the Phantoms at 518-480-3355.

Adirondack Phantoms 2 at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins 3 - Status: Final
Saturday, December 4, 2010 - Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza

Adirondack 1 0 1 - 2
W-B/Scranton 1 0 2 - 3

1st Period-1, Adirondack, Wellwood 6 (Rowe, Jancevski), 8:01. 2, W-B/Scranton, Jeffrey 13 (Tangradi, Bortuzzo), 18:05. Penalties-Wellwood Adk (hooking), 2:26; Rowe Adk (roughing), 10:26; Moore Adk (hooking), 16:03; Marshall Adk (roughing), 20:00; Craig Wbs (roughing), 20:00.

2nd Period- No Scoring.Penalties-Mormina Wbs (slashing), 8:04; Leighton Adk (delay of game), 17:07.

3rd Period-3, W-B/Scranton, Wallace 9 (Potter, Jeffrey), 15:00. 4, W-B/Scranton, Tangradi 5 (Sneep, Bortuzzo), 16:46. 5, Adirondack, Holmstrom 5 (Hamel, Syvret), 18:20 (PP). Penalties-Wagner Wbs (slashing), 10:12; Vitale Wbs (hooking), 18:05.

Shots on Goal-Adirondack 4-8-12-24. W-B/Scranton 15-10-4-29.
Power Play Opportunities-Adirondack 1 / 3; W-B/Scranton 0 / 4.
Goalies-Adirondack, Leighton 0-1-0 (29 shots-26 saves). W-B/Scranton, Curry 9-2-0 (24 shots-22 saves).
Referees-Graham Skilliter (40).
Linesmen-Judson Ritter (34), Jameel Chaudry (51).







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