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Penguins Halt Phantoms 3-2

February 8, 2014

Jason Akeson scored his team-leading 17th of the year in a late comeback effort but the host Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins were able to hold on for a 3-2 victory on Saturday night at Mohegan Sun Arena.

Brandon Alderson contributed his seventh of the season. Cal Heeter took the loss for Adirondack as a late nod for the starting role after Yann Danis was reported to have come down with illness during the afternoon. Danis was initially deemed to be the team's starter for this game and was planning on the role still during the team's morning skate but he possibly caught part of the bug that has gone around to a few other players on the team.

Former Phantom and Flyer Harry Zolnierczyk likely had a greater sense of satisfaction in his #1 Star of the Game performance as he burned his ex-teammates with a goal and an assist. "Harry Z" had just been sent back to Wilkes-Barre from the Pittsburgh Penguins earlier in the day and arrived only a few hours before game-time. His wrap-around goal beating Cal Heeter in the second-period was his 15th of the year for the Baby Pens.

Adirondack had a late 6-on-4 power play and extra-attacker opportunity with a chance to tie. Chris VandeVelde deflected a nice centering pass from Jason Akeson towards the net but just missed putting it in the goal as the Penguins dodged the late bullet. Adirondack out-shot Wilkes-Barre/Scranton 11-3 in the final period but only had the one goal from Akeson that closed the deficit to one.

Harry Zolnierczyk helped open the scoring in the first period with his breakaway on Heeter. The Phantoms goalie made a nice save on his former teammate but shortly after the stop, Nick Drazenovic converted from the left-point with his ninth of the year for a 1-0 Penguins advantage at the first intermission.

Derek Mathers dropped the gloves with Pierre-Luc Letorneau-Leblond in an early-game scrap. Letourneau-Leblond had played in Glens Falls for the Adirondack Frostbite in the UHL at the beginning of his pro career almost a decade ago.

Brandon Alderson made a smart chip-and-run play to set himself up for his seventh goal of the season. Picking off the puck in the Adirondack zone, the rookie winger banked the puck off the boards around the Penguins left-defenseman and then rushed up to the Wilkes-Barre side on a 2-on-1. Alderson took the shot himself from the top of the right-circle and converted top shelf on Jeff Deslauriers to tie the score at 1-1 just 1:57 into the second period.

Zolnierczyk put the Penguins back in front 11 minutes later. With the puck on the left of the cage, he was able to get Heeter to bite on his fake. Heeter went down and kicked up his left leg expecting a sharp-angle shot, but Zolnierczyk held onto the puck and quickly carried it behind the goal for the wrap-around conversion on the other side giving the Penguins a 2-1 lead at the second intermission.

Simon Despres connected on a long stretch-pass to Mike Carman who split the Phantoms D at the Adirondack line and then moved the puck from backhand to forehand for a breakaway goal. His tally midway through the third period gave the Penguins a 3-1 lead.

Jason Akeson quickly responded with six minutes left in regulation after a puck bounced off various players of both sides frantically battling in the slot. Akeson's shot might have deflected off a Pens' stick and then was somewhat fluttered into the goal. Those are the bounces that Akeson has been getting on his latest scoring surge in which he has been potting goals left and right from all angles and varying shots. His team-leading 17th of the season is also his 11th goal of his most recent 16 games (since December 28). Akeson has scored over a point per game in his last 16 contests with 20 points in that stretch on 11 goals and nine assists.

The Phantoms received the late power-play opportunity with 1:32 left and pulled Cal Heeter for the extra attacker but were unable to score the equalizer 6-on-4.

The Phantoms play their last game before the AHL All-Star Break on Sunday afternoon at 3:00 at the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. Adirondack will not skate or hold any practices from Monday through Thursday during the break. They return to the Glens Falls Civic Center next Friday night for a Valentine's Day matchup with the Portland Pirates. Order tickets in advance to save by calling the Adirondack Phantoms at 518-480-3355.

Adirondack Phantoms 2 at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins 3 - Status: Final
Saturday, February 8, 2014 - Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza

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

1st Period-1, W-B/Scranton, Drazenovic 9 (Zolnierczyk, Harrington), 7:14. Penalties-Mathers Adk (unsportsmanlike conduct, fighting), 2:25; Letourneau-Leblond Wbs (unsportsmanlike conduct, fighting), 2:25; Uher Wbs (slashing), 7:33; Lauridsen Adk (holding), 10:29; Bourdon Adk (closing hand on puck), 15:51; Mangene Adk (slashing), 17:20; Ebbett Wbs (slashing), 17:20.

2nd Period-2, Adirondack, Alderson 7 1:57. 3, W-B/Scranton, Zolnierczyk 15 (Drazenovic, D'Agostino), 13:40. Penalties-Manning Adk (hooking), 3:50; Bordson Adk (roughing), 4:46; Carman Wbs (interference), 8:11; Newbury Adk (cross-checking), 15:22; McNeill Wbs (tripping), 19:00.

3rd Period-4, W-B/Scranton, Carman 5 (Despres), 9:46. 5, Adirondack, Akeson 17 (Holmstrom, VandeVelde), 13:58. Penalties-McNeill Wbs (interference), 1:03; Zolnierczyk Wbs (high-sticking), 10:24; Heeter Adk (delay of game), 11:44; Mangene Adk (roughing), 12:47; Ebbett Wbs (roughing), 12:47; Rowney Wbs (slashing), 18:32.

Shots on Goal-Adirondack 8-6-11-25. W-B/Scranton 7-16-3-26.
Power Play Opportunities-Adirondack 0 / 6; W-B/Scranton 0 / 6.
Goalies-Adirondack, Heeter 15-17-0 (26 shots-23 saves). W-B/Scranton, Deslauriers 17-11-2 (25 shots-23 saves).
Referees-Trevor Hanson (47), Jamie Koharski (84).
Linesmen-Leo Boylan (97), Brian Oliver (74).



Sunday, February 9 (3:00) - Adirondack Phantoms at Bridgeport Sound Tigers

Monday, Feburary 10 - AHL All-Star Break

Thursday, February 13 - All-Star Break Ends

Friday, February 14 (7:00) - Portland Pirates at Adirondack Phantoms
Valentine's Day with the Phantoms!!

Saturday, February 15 (5:00) - Adirondack Phantoms at Albany Devils

Sunday, February 16 (4:00) - Adirondack Phantoms at Portland Pirates

Friday, February 21 (7:00) - Albany Devils at Adirondack Phantoms. Special Olympic-Theme Jerseys! Postgame Auction. Own your piece of history as the Phantoms wear Red, White and Blue

Saturday, February 22 (7:00) - Bridgeport Sound Tigers at Adirondack Phantoms. At Philadelphia

When you order your tickets in advance, you save! Call the Phantoms at 518-480-3355

25 Terrific Seasons
Glens Falls is celebrating its 25th season hosting an AHL team and in so doing now joins an elite group of just 9 other active markets who can make such a claim. It's a great hockey tradition with an old-school feel that began with the Adirondack Red Wings in 1979. In their 20-year tenure at the Glens Falls Civic Center through 1999, the Red Wings won four Calder Cups. The Adirondack Phantoms began play in Glens Falls in 2009-10 and are in their fifth season bringing exciting AHL action to the North Country.






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