Michael Leighton was spectacular again! Racking
up 35 saves in a sparkling shutout, Leighton led
the Adirondack Phantoms to a 3-0 win at the Portland
Pirates on Friday night. Garrett Roe and Tyler Brown
both scored their first professional goals to lead
For Leighton, the shutout was his first of the season
and the 35th in his 10-year AHL career. Leighton
leads all AHL goalies in the modern era (since 1975)
in blankings, while he sits sixth in the 76-year
history of the league.
Leighton made 35 saves in the effort and has only
allowed one goal over the last two games. Improving
to 4-0-0, Leighton took over sole possesion over
the AHL's lead in wins. Meanwhile, Adirondack improved
its overall record to 4-1-0 and became the first
team in the Northeast Division to reach eight points.
The Phantoms trail first place Hershey by just one
point atop the Eastern Conference standings.
Leighton's shutout was the first against the Pirates
at Cumberland County Civic Center in nearly five
years, as Portland was last shut out on its home
ice by Jason LaBarbera (Manchester) on January 17,
2007. The Pirates fell to 2-2-1 with the loss in
their first season as the AHL affiliate of the Phoenix
Harry Zolnierczyk also scored for the Phantoms,
three days after he scored his first NHL goal in
highlight-reel fashion for the Flyers in Ottawa.
Zac Rinaldo played in his first game for the Phantoms
this year after beginning the season in the NHL
with the Philadelphia Flyers with his revamped game.
Rinaldo worked hard in the off-season to increase
his speed and improve his hands and it was immediately
apparent from his first shift that the newer, faster
version of Rinaldo is determined to contribute to
the offense. After playing the role of bruising
bad-boy last season and finishing second in the
league with 331 penalty minutes, Rinaldo opened
his first game of the AHL season without serving
a second in the sin-bin.
The 21-year-old from Hamilton, Ontario had several
solid scoring chances and was clicking nicely with
linemate Harry Zolnierczyk on the attack. "Harry
Z" was without both of his regular linemates
in the game as Brayden Schenn was called up to Philadelphia
earlier ni the week and Eric Wellwood was scratched
from the lineup.
After the first period passed as the first scoreless
frame in a Phantoms game this season, Tyler Brown's
first professional tally put the Phantoms on the
board at 2:44 of the second period. Brown's goal
came over a falling McElhinney after Garrett Roe
started the sequence by shooting the puck from the
left-wing off the side of the net, corralling his
own rebound, and then threading a pass from behind
the net and through the slot for the excited Adirondack
rookie, whose milestone marker came in his fifth
For Roe, the assist was his fifth of the season,
which are the most of any other AHL rookie.
Already with five assists under his belt, Roe got
his first professional goal and made the score 2-0
Adirondack at 8:36 of the third period. Shortly
after the 5-on-3 portion of a Phantoms power play
expired, Roe blasted a shot from the center point
which found its way through trafiic and past McElhinney.
With a goal and an assist on Friday, Roe has three
multi-point game in the season's first two weeks.
In the game's final minute, Harry Zolnierczyk scored
the Phantoms' second power-play goal of the night
and made the score 3-0. Assisted by Zac Rinaldo
and Jason Akeson, Zolnierczyk's goal was part of
a 2-of-5 night on the power play for the Phantoms,
who have scored on the man advantage in all five
of their games this season. Going into Friday, the
Phantoms led the AHL in team power-play goals and
Adirondack is now 9-of-32 (28.1%) for the season.
It starting 4-1-0, the Phantoms have outscored their
opponents by a combined 22-13, including a margin
of 20-7 in their four victories. All of the Phantoms
wins this year have been decided by 3 or more goals
as their finals of their triumphs have been, in
order, 6-3, 6-3, 5-1 and 3-0.
Allowing three goals on 23 shots, Curtis McElhinney
was the losing goaltender.
The punches flew towards the end of the game as
Ben Holmstrom mixed it up with Ryan Hollweg and
then on the ensuing faceoff, Marc-Andre Bourdon
dropped the mitts with Igor Gongalsky.
With two straight road wins, the Phantoms play the
fourth game of a five-game road trip when they visit
the rival Albany Devils on Saturday night at 7:00
p.m. in the opener of the 10-game battle for the
Time Warner Cable Cup. Adirondack concludes its
road trip in Rochester on Sunday night at 6:00 p.m.,
and returns home on Wednesday night against the
The Phantoms went 2-for-5 on the power play while
the Pirates were 0-for-3. Portland outshot the Phantoms
35-23. This was the first of four games between
Adirondack vs. Portland and was the first time Adirondack
has beaten the Pirates in the series. The Phantoms
travel back to Maine for a Tuesday, November 15
game in their last game at Portland this season.
The Pirates' first visit to the GFCC will take place
on December 9.
Notes: Scratches for the game included Eric Wellwood,
Blake Kessel, Garrett Klotz, Jon Kalinski and Johan
Saturday, October 22-Phantoms at Albany Devils (7:00
Sunday, October 23-Phantoms at Rochester Americans
Monday, October 24- 7:00 p.m. - "Phantoms Power
Hour" LIVE from McGinney's Tavern, 193 Glen
Street. Special guests #11 Shane Harper and #16
Wednesday, October 26, 7:00- Phantoms vs. Norfolk
at the GFCC. $1 hot dogs.
Friday, October 28, 7:00 - Phantoms vs. Connecticut.
Sean Avery playing on the Connecticut Whale now.
$2 draft Bud Light and Labatt Blue through first
Saturday, October 29, 7:00 - Phantoms vs. Hershey
at the GFCC. Kids Halloween Costume Parade. Postgame
open-skate with the Phantoms players presented by
Glens Falls Hospital.
Sunday, October 30, 1:30-4:00 - Cruise with the
Phantoms presented by the Glens Falls Civic Center
Foundation. All Phantoms players appearing! Hor
d'oeuvres and cash bar. Tickets $25 for adults,
$15 for kids: Available at GFCC Box Office and Achenbach
Get great savings and have fun with your friends,
family or co-workers by bringing your group of 15
or more fans to enjoy fast-paced, hard-hitting Phantoms
hockey. Call the Phantoms to find out more at 518-480-3355
and check the team's website at phantomshockey.com.
Catch all the action of Phantoms hockey all season
long on the team's flagship station, Classic Hits
Q101.7 and on phantomshockey.com. Bob Rotruck has
the broadcast coverage 30 minutes prior to game-time
with Countdown to Faceoff.
The Adirondack Phantoms are now over 10,000 members
strong on their social media networks. Be sure to
follow us on twitter @phantomshockey and on facebook.com/adkhockey
Adirondack Phantoms 3 at Portland Pirates 0 - Status:
Friday, October 21, 2011 - Cumberland County Civic
Adirondack 0 1 2 - 3
Portland 0 0 0 - 0
1st Period- No Scoring.Penalties-Rome Por (boarding),
2nd Period-1, Adirondack, Brown 1 (Roe), 2:44.
Penalties-Gustafsson Adk (tripping), 10:48; Goncharov
Por (tripping), 13:30; McGinn Adk (slashing), 19:12.
3rd Period-2, Adirondack, Roe 1 (Zolnierczyk, Sestito),
8:36 (PP). 3, Adirondack, Zolnierczyk 2 (Rinaldo,
Akeson), 19:05 (PP). Penalties-Testwuide Adk (holding),
1:13; Werek Por (tripping), 6:28; Stone Por (delay
of game), 6:54; Stafford Por (hooking), 17:46; Holmstrom
Adk (fighting), 19:38; Hollweg Por (fighting), 19:38;
Bourdon Adk (fighting), 19:39; Gongalsky Por (fighting),
Shots on Goal-Adirondack 7-8-8-23. Portland 13-10-12-35.
Power Play Opportunities-Adirondack 2 / 5; Portland
0 / 3.
Goalies-Adirondack, Leighton 4-0-0 (35 shots-35
saves). Portland, McElhinney 1-2-0 (23 shots-20
Referees-Ryan Hersey (46).
Linesmen-Joe Ross (92), Joe Andrews (32).