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Shootout Win for Cousins in 5th Round

April 5, 2014

By Kenny Ayres

Overtimes and shootouts are becoming a recurring theme. Nick Cousins dangled his way around Bridgeport goaltender Phillipe Trudeau in the fifth round of Adirondack's third consecutive shootout for a nifty backhand game-winner. The Phantoms prevailed 4-3 over the visiting Sound Tigers in the team's last ever Saturday night game at the Glens Falls Civic Center.

With the shootout tied at one after four rounds, Nick Cousins made a clever move. After committing to the blocker-side and inducing Trudeau to bite, he nonchalantly extended his stick across the crease, stuffing the puck into the open net for the goal. Brandon Alderson also scored in the shootout, and goalie Cal Heeter steered aside four of the five shots sent his way.

Ben Holmstrom and Josh Holmstrom lining up. “It was very nice to win in a shootout,” said head coach Terry Murray. “[And it was a] pretty nice goal to finish it off.”

It was a fitting end to an overall well-played game from the Phantoms that featured a lot of shots, and a lot of action.

This game also featured a fun side-story courtesy of the Holmstrom family. Josh Holmstrom having recently joined the Bridgeport Sound Tigers was making his professional debut against big brother, Ben in what Ben says is the first time they had ever squared off in an official game. Both Holmstrom had been captain at UMass-Lowell, with Josh's career having come to an end just last weekend in the NCAA Tournament. Ben Holmstrom's 249th career game in the American Hockey League was Josh Holmstrom's first.

“It was something pretty unique to be able to play in his first pro game,” Ben Holmstrom said. “It was good to see him in his first one and get his feet wet. I’m happy for him.”

It was all fun and games this time, but Holmstrom admitted he may not be so nice to his younger brother the next time around.

“I think there’s always sibling rivalry. We’re always competing against each other,” Ben Holmstrom said. “Tonight was mostly encouragement but I’m sure if we meet a few more times, it will start to deviate to a little more chirping but for the first time, I wasn’t going to try to get in his head and mess with him much.”

Adirondack and Bridgeport play each other two more times this season on April 12 in Bridgeport and on April 18 in the last ever home game for the Adirondack Phantoms.

As for the exciting game, the Phantoms peppered Trudeau - who was making just his second professional start - with 43 shots in regulation and overtime, with three of them finding the back of the net.

Tyler Brown (3rd), Petr Straka (8th) and Alderson (9th) all netted goals for the Phantoms in the win, with each goal either giving Adirondack the lead, or extending their lead. They never trailed.

Brown’s goal, which came on a beautiful backhand shot, opened scoring 4:32 into the second period. Before that, both goaltenders, despite facing a mass of shots early on, stayed strong. However, for Trudeau, the Phantoms’ pressure eventually proved to be too much to handle.

The play started when Rob Bordson squeezed past a Bridgeport player at the right boards near center ice, starting a 2-on-1 rush with Brown, who was streaking down the left side. Bordson slipped a pass around the skates of the lone Bridgeport defender, hitting Brown perfectly in stride. Brown moved right in front of the net, and deked to the backhand. Tudreau bit on the move, and Brown had a wide open net to score his third of the season.

Bridgeport would tie the game with just 1:38 left in the period on a goal from Scooter Vaughan, but the score did not stay tied for long.

Adirondack came out in the third with the same energy they had for most of the second.

It paid off almost immediately.

Just 35 seconds in, the Phantoms were able to break down the Sound Tigers, and Straka re-took the lead for Adirondack with his eighth goal of the season, assisted by Jason Akeson and Kevin Goumas. That assist gave Akeson 61 points on the season, and moves him to within one point of Jon Matsumoto’s record of 62, set in 2009-10.

The Phantoms did not stop there. The continued to win the one-on-one battles and out-worked the Sound Tigers in their own end. The chances on odd-man rushes were replaced with prolonged, systematic attacks, with several shots fired on Trudeau each possession.

Just about six minutes after Straka’s goal, the Phantoms extended the lead to 3-1. On the first faceoff after being awarded a power play, Robert Hagg unleashed a shot on net, and Alderson was able to extend his stick and deflect it past Trudeau and over the line. It was Alderson’s ninth tally of the season, and for Hagg, his first professional point.

Hagg’s effort, along with the contributions from the other younger players on Saturday was a huge positive. The younger players on the team have been providing a spark all season.

“I’ve been happy with the way the rookies have come along here since the Christmas break,” Murray said. “I think we’ve had some good performances from the young guys. Really good. I like the attitude that they’re bringing. Not only to the game here today, but as we go through the practices, there’s stuff happening on the ice and there’s good work getting put on off the ice.”

The Sound Tigers got strong offensive efforts from both Vaughan and Chris Langkow, who combined to account for almost all of Bridgeport’s points in the game. Langkow scored the second goal for Bridgeport as well as the game-tying goal late in the third. Vaughan got Bridgeport on the board in the second with his seventh of the season. Both players also had an assist apiece in the game.

Two of the Bridgeport goals came on the power play, and Heeter was subjected to 36 shots, including 14 in a scoreless first period. He also saved four of the five Bridgeport shootout attempts en route to his 16th win of the season.

In addition to the win, Saturday’s game also featured a pre-game ceremony for Zack FitzGerald, who is the recipient of the 2013-14 Phantoms IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year Award, for his outstanding service to the Glens Falls community during the season. It is the second time he has won the award, as he also took it home during the 2012-13 season. FitzGerald will now be one of 30 finalists for the AHL's 2013-14 Yanick Dupre Memorial Award, which is given to the overall IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year.

Adirondack concludes their homestand on Sunday afternoon at 3:00 against the Albany Devils. The matchup will be the 46th, and last, game of the four-season Northway Rivalry. The Albany Devils hold a slim 23-22 lead over the Adirondack Phantoms entering the last ever game between the two squads. Call the Phantoms to order your Sunday Family FunPack for only $43 to receive 3 tickets, 3 hot dogs, 3 sodas, 1 large popcorn and 1 program.

The Adirondack Phantoms have only three home games remaining including Sunday, April 13 vs. Utica and Friday, April 18 vs. Bridgeport.

Bridgeport Sound Tigers 3 at Adirondack Phantoms 4 (SO) - Status: Final SO
Saturday, April 5, 2014 - Glens Falls Civic Center

Bridgeport 0 1 2 0 - 3
Adirondack 0 1 2 0 - 4

1st Period- No Scoring.Penalties-Bruton Bri (high-sticking), 10:18; Gallant Bri (fighting, misconduct), 13:05; Eddy Adk (fighting), 13:05.

2nd Period-1, Adirondack, Brown 3 (Bordson, Holmstrom), 4:32. 2, Bridgeport, Vaughan 7 (Langkow), 18:22. Penalties-Graham Bri (high-sticking), 6:27; Langkow Bri (goaltender interference), 7:03; Pedan Bri (fighting), 17:38; Holmstrom Adk (fighting), 17:38.

3rd Period-3, Adirondack, Straka 8 (Akeson, Goumas), 0:35. 4, Adirondack, Alderson 9 (Hägg, Whitmore), 6:31 (PP). 5, Bridgeport, Langkow 4 (Graham),13:35 (PP). 6, Bridgeport, Langkow 5 (Vaughan, Harris), 18:27 (PP). Penalties-Alderson Adk (boarding), 1:38; Pedan Bri (delay of game), 6:25; Bordson Adk (tripping), 11:37; Pedan Bri (tripping), 14:29; Johnston Adk (delay of game), 17:46.

OT Period- No Scoring.Penalties-Vaughan Bri (holding), 2:49.

Shootout - Bridgeport 1 (Walters NG, Harris NG, Crus Rydberg NG, Quine G, Vaughan NG), Adirondack 2 (Akeson NG, Straka NG, Goumas NG, Alderson G, Cousins G).
Shots on Goal-Bridgeport 14-11-10-1-0-36. Adirondack 13-11-14-5-1-44.
Power Play Opportunities-Bridgeport 2 / 3; Adirondack 1 / 6.
Goalies-Bridgeport, Trudeau 0-1-1 (43 shots-40 saves). Adirondack, Heeter 16-24-2 (36 shots-33 saves).
Referees-David Banfield (77), Pierre Lambert (39).
Linesmen-Mike Emanatian (69), Francis Trempe (56).


Sunday, April 6 (3:00) - Albany Devils at Adirondack Phantoms - Sunday Family FunPacks for only $43!

Friday, April 11 (7:00) - Adirondack Phantoms at Worcester Sharks

Saturday, April 12 (7:00) - Adirondack Phantoms at Bridgeport Sound Tigers

Sunday, April 13 (5:00) - Utica Comets at Adirondack Phantoms - Sunday Family FunPacks for only $43

Friday, April 18 (7:00) - Bridgeport Sound Tigers at Adirondack Phantoms - Fond Farewell Night!
Last Adirondack Phantoms Home Game


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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