Denis Hamel made it
an amazing 10 seasons with 20 or more goals, but
the Adirondack Phantoms lost a hard-fought game
at the Syracuse Crunch 5-2 on St. Patrick's Day.
Adirondack trailed only 3-2 with a minute remaining
but Syracuse scored a pair of goals in the closing
seconds to seal the win and make the final score
look unlike the true closeness of the Saturday
Marc-Andre Bourdon returned to the Phantoms lineup
for the first time since November and scored his
first AHL goal of the year after scoring a couple
of tallies with Philadelphia earlier.
The setback moves the Phantoms three points out
of the last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference
with 12 games remaining in the regular season.
Hamel passed Adirondack Red Wing great Glenn Merkosky
earlier this season for 12th all-time in AHL history
in goals scored. More recently, both were honored
with a fine ovation in a nice puck-dropping ceremony
at the GFCC. This one was Hamel's 335th career
goal to solidify his hold on 11th all-time in
the AHL and second among active players trailing
only Alexandre Giroux of Springfield. Hamel has
said he will consider playing another season,
possibly for the Phantoms, but will not think
about that until the 2011-12 season is complete.
J.F. Jacques led the way for the Crunch with a
pair of goals. He has 19 goals on the season,
eight of which have come against the Phantoms.
The Phantoms appeared to be on the verge of recording
the tying goal on several occasions in the third
period. But a couple of penalties in the closing
minutes that were disputed by the Phantoms put
the clamps on Adirondack's comeback efforts somewhat.
Adirondack snapped out of their recent power play
struggles with a 2-for-4 performance.
Denis Hamel tipped-in a long slapper by Blake
Kessel for a power play goal in the first period
to give Adirondack a 1-0 lead.
J.F. Jacques was able to rush in for a rebound
of a Patrick Maroon shot off the pads of Leighton
to tie the score at 1-1 at the first intermission.
Adirondack mostly had the better of the play in
the first and outshot the Crunch 15-10 in an opening
20 minutes that saw good action, pace and transition
back and forth on the War Memorial Arena ice.
Syracuse came out firing in the second period
as they outshot the Phantoms 16-7. They took the
lead early in the period on a 5-on-3 goal following
a bad-break on an accidental clear over the glass
from the defensive zone by Bourdon. Mathieu Carle
blased home a one-timer from the top of the left
circle for the 2-1 lead.
Adirondack would comeback to tie the score again
late in the second period on a nice drop by Shane
Harper in the left-wing circle to Bourdon hustling
up to the dot to snap home his first of the year.
The 2-2 tie only lasted a couple of minutes. Jacques
scored again with 34 seconds left in the second
period for the 3-2 Syracuse lead.
The Phantoms had several intercepts in the Syracuse
zone in the third period and kept good puck possession
while the Crunch appeared to be barely hanging
But when Bourdon gave a tap back after getting
hit behind the Phantoms' goal he was called for
a slashing penalty late in the one-goal game to
give Syracuse a key power play. The Phantoms were
able to kill that off and keep momentum going
back at the Syracuse end.
Hamel was in the slot with over two minutes left
when he made contact with the goalie, possibly
shoved into him by a Crunch defenseman, and was
called for interference. Hamel vehemently protested
the crucial call that put the Phantoms down a
man with 2:19 remaining in their comeback efforts
but the decision stood.
Syracuse rushed out of the zone to score an empty-netter
with 45 seconds left and Mike Testwuide was called
for a tripping penalty while the goal was scored
but still was forced to serve the penalty. Syracuse
added another goal with 11 seconds left to close
out the win.
The final two goals Syracuse scored were on the
power play giving them a 3-for-7 night in the
end while Adirondack was 2-for-4. The Crunch had
35 shots to Adirondack's 34.
The Phantoms were without Brandon Manning who
was on his way to Philadelphia to join the Flyers
on his second NHL call-up. Other scratches included
Andrew Rowe, Luke Pither, Matt Walker and Oskars
The Phantoms are off for a week before returning
to action next Friday night with the finale of
the three-game road-trip at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton
against the Penguins.
Adirondack's next home games are Saturday, March
24 against Springfield on Star Wars Night followed
by a Sunday, March 25 matchup with Binghamton
on Dax's first birthday celebration. For tickets,
call the Phantoms at (518) 480-3355.
Monday, March 19, 7:00 - Phantoms Power Hour LIVE
from McGinny's. Scheduled players guests Jason
Akeson and Shane Harper.
Friday, March 23, 7:00 - Adirondack Phantoms at
Saturday, March 24, 7:00 - Springfield Falcons
at Adirondack Phantoms. Star Wars Night with Darth
Vader and Boba Fett! Guns 'N Hoses Charity Game
at 3:00 to benefit NY Special Olympics.
Sunday, March 25, 3:00 - Binghamton Senators at
Adirondack Phantoms. Dax's Birthday Party and
Mascot Mania!! Post-game skate with the Phantoms
players presented by Glens Falls Hospital.
Get great savings with the Phantoms when you bring
your group of 15 friends or co-workers to a game.
Group-rates available as low as $13 per person.
Call the Phantoms to find out more at 518-480-3355.
Get your Adirondack O'Phantoms T-Shirts! Two tickets
for any game in March plus a St. Patrick's Day
O'Phantoms logo T-Shirt all for only $30.
The Sunday Family 3-Pack is available for ALL
Sunday home games! Get 3 tickets, 3 hot dogs,
3 sodas, 1 large popcorn and 1 program all for
only $39. That's a savings of $26!
Follow the Phantoms at facebook.com/ADKhockey
and on twitter @phantomshockey
Adirondack Phantoms 2 at Syracuse Crunch 5 - Status:
Saturday, March 17, 2012 - Onondaga County War
Memorial at Oncenter
Adirondack 1 1 0 - 2
Syracuse 1 2 2 - 5
1st Period-1, Adirondack, Hamel 20 (Kessel, Akeson),
12:00 (PP). 2, Syracuse, Jacques 18 (Maroon, Holland),
15:07. Penalties-Zimmerman Syr (roughing), 3:34;
Brittain Syr (unsportsmanlike conduct), 11:43.
2nd Period-3, Syracuse, Carle 6 (Cumiskey, Maroon),
2:52 (PP). 4, Adirondack, Bourdon 1 (Harper, Roe),
16:50 (PP). 5, Syracuse, Jacques 19 (Holland,
Smaby), 19:26. Penalties-Cumiskey Syr (delay of
game), 0:09; Ford Adk (interference), 1:13; Bourdon
Adk (delay of game), 2:26; Zolnierczyk Adk (fighting),
5:04; Bodie Syr (fighting), 5:04; Holmstrom Adk
(elbowing), 9:19; Schaus Syr (interference), 14:59.
3rd Period-6, Syracuse, Holzapfel 13 (Cumiskey,
McMillan), 19:15 (PP EN). 7, Syracuse, Bodie 4
(McMillan), 19:49 (PP). Penalties-Ford Adk (tripping),
4:46; Bourdon Adk (slashing), 11:02; Hamel Adk
(goaltender interference), 17:41; Testwuide Adk
Shots on Goal-Adirondack 15-7-13-35. Syracuse
Power Play Opportunities-Adirondack 2 / 4; Syracuse
3 / 7.
Goalies-Adirondack, Leighton 21-23-0 (34 shots-30
saves). Syracuse, Tarkki 18-15-4 (35 shots-33
Referees-Brett Montsion (80).
Linesmen-Jeff Walker (28), Andy Petrus (26).