Third Longest Win Streak in Phantoms History
November 19, 2016
Bridgeport, CT – All good things must come to an end. And that’s what happened to the the longest Phantoms win streak in over a decade when Lehigh Valley fell at the Bridgeport Sound Tigers 5-2 on Saturday night. The Phantoms sustained their first loss in November while having their eight-game win streak snapped.
Lehigh Valley has mostly dominated against the rest of the American Hockey League. The feisty and scrappy Bridgeport Sound Tigers are the only group to have found a working formula against the Phantoms. When the Phantoms play anyone but Bridgeport they are almost undefeated; Lehigh Valley is 10-1-1 against the rest of the league.
Lehigh Valley attempted their second dramatic multi-goal comeback in as many nights but were not able to pull it off again as Bridgeport barely hung on. Max Lamarche scored on the power play for the second time in as many nights and T.J. Brennan’s power-play blast early in the third period pulled the Phantoms to within 3-2 before Bridgeport was finally able to salt away the win with a pair of late goals in the final four minutes.
Josh Winquist scored two goals including a late empty-netter. And Islanders first-rounders Michael Dal Colle and Josh Ho-Sang also lit the lamp as did NHL veteran Steve Bernier who converted on a shorthanded breakaway going high glove on Alex Lyon.
Perkasie, Pa. native Eamon McAdam recorded the victory for the Islanders affiliate marking his first career win in the American Hockey League. McAdam is the first-ever Lehigh Valley area native to play professional hockey. The Islanders third-round selection a couple years ago played for three years at Penn State before turning pro.
The game featured a handful of scrums and scraps as well as a fight between big youngsters Sam Morin and Ross Johnston in the decidedly feisty affair.
Max Lamarche staked the Phantoms to an early 1-0 advantage with his power-play conversion 8:53 into the game. The fourth-year pro hustled to the slot to receive a smooth drop from behind the net by Danick Martel. Lamarche blasted his second goal of the season off the right iron and in past McAdam It was also the second time this weekend Martel had set up Lamarche for a goal.
Bridgeport responded with almost five minutes left in the first period with Michael Dal Colle knocking in a spinning puck to the side of Lyon’s right skate following a pad save on a center-point drive from Devon Toews. Their own power-play goal had evened the score for the Sound Tigers at 1-1 before the first break.
The Phantoms received back-to-back power plays in the second period but Bridgeport was able to take advantage on a steal at the Sound Tigers line by 31-year-old veteran Steve Bernier. The former New Jersey Devil and San Jose Shark raced at Lyon on the shorthanded breakaway and succeeded top-shelf going over the glove of the Phantoms goalie to provide Bridgeport with its first lead of the night.
Less than six minutes later, Bernier would force a puck free behind the Phantoms goal and quickly find Josh Winquist in the slot who power his quick drive through Lyon before the netminder could react. For the second night in a row the Phantoms trailed by a 3-1 second at the second intermission.
Lehigh Valley looked to put together the comeback magic again in the third period and T. J. Brennan’s blast from the right point through McAdam at 1:57 on the power play brought the deficit to 3-2. The Phantoms mounted some more threats from there around a couple of delays to repair various ice issues. But eventually the Sound Tigers were able to take advantage of the Phantoms desperation in the form of a Josh Ho-Sang breakaway on a backhander with 3:24 remaining for a 4-2 lead.
Just 64 seconds after that was Devon Toews finding a puck in the corner and then Josh Winquist smacking a mid-air drive with his stick from the blue line all the way down to an empty for the 5-2 final score. T.J. Brennan expressed his frustration and argued with the referee receiving a misconduct penalty immediately after the empty-netter perhaps contending the puck was deflected by a high stick.
The eight-game win streak was the longest for the Phantoms since the 2004-05 season when the Philadelphia Phantoms strung together 17 consecutive victories in a season that culminated with a Calder Cup. The Philadelphia Phantoms also won nine in a row back in the 1997-98 campaign that also finished a raising of the Cup. The Phantoms had never won eight straight besides those two other streaks.
Lehigh Valley out shot the Sound Tigers 28-24. The Phantoms were 2-for-6 on the power play and went 5-for-10 on the weekend. Bridgeport finished at 1-for-4 on the power play and also contributed a shorthanded goal.
The Phantoms conclude their three-game road swing on Thanksgiving Eve with a Wednesday night sojourn to to the Binghamton Senators.
Lehigh Valley is then back at PPL Center for a pair of games following the Thanksgiving holiday. First, on Friday, November 25, it’s the Go Birds Tailgate with Eagles legend, Ron Jaworski, along with the Eagles Cheerleaders, on hand to meet fans and sign autographs before the Phantoms’ 7:05 p.m. clash with the Binghamton Senators. Then, on Saturday, November 26, the Hartford Wolf Pack return to downtown Allentown for another rivalry showdown.
Tickets for both games are available now and can be purchased by clicking HERE.
Lehigh Valley Phantoms 2 at Bridgeport Sound Tigers 5 – Status: Final
Saturday, November 19, 2016 – Webster Bank Arena
Lehigh Valley 1 0 1 – 2
Bridgeport 1 2 2 – 5
1st Period-1, Lehigh Valley, Lamarche 2 (Martel, Leier), 8:53 (PP). 2, Bridgeport, Dal Colle 6 (Toews, Ho-Sang), 15:07 (PP). Penalties-O’Neill Lv (holding), 2:31; Bernier Bri (charging), 7:24; Morin Lv (roughing, unsportsmanlike conduct), 14:10; J. Holmstrom Bri (roughing), 14:10; Bardreau Lv (hooking), 16:17.
2nd Period-3, Bridgeport, Bernier 4 7:27 (SH). 4, Bridgeport, Winquist 3 (Bernier, Kearns), 13:11. Penalties-Kearns Bri (holding), 4:52; J. Holmstrom Bri (cross-checking), 6:38; Aube-Kubel Lv (roughing), 9:43; Landry Bri (roughing, unsportsmanlike conduct), 9:43; Morin Lv (fighting), 15:15; Johnston Bri (fighting), 15:15; Bernier Bri (slashing), 17:18.
3rd Period-5, Lehigh Valley, Brennan 5 (Zengerle, O’Neill), 1:57 (PP). 6, Bridgeport, Ho-Sang 2 (Lafranchise), 16:36. 7, Bridgeport, Winquist 4 (Toews), 17:42 (EN). Penalties-Burroughs Bri (roughing), 1:24; Knight Lv (cross-checking), 5:41; Brennan Lv (misconduct – abuse of officials), 17:42.
Shots on Goal-Lehigh Valley 8-14-6-28. Bridgeport 10-8-6-24.
Power Play Opportunities-Lehigh Valley 2 / 6; Bridgeport 1 / 4.
Goalies-Lehigh Valley, Lyon 4-2-1 (23 shots-19 saves). Bridgeport, McAdam 1-0-0 (28 shots-26 saves).
Referees-Mike Langin (90).
Linesmen-John Kiriakos (23), Paul Simeon (66).
RISE UP! Another thrilling season of Lehigh Valley Phantoms hockey at PPL Center is underway! Reserve your season tickets and group outings for the 2016-2017 season of Phantoms hockey today. For more information on how to reserve your seat at PPL Center to the hottest ticket in town, call the Phantoms front office today at 610-224-GOAL !
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The Phantoms are thrilled to host the 2017 Capital BlueCross AHL All-Star Classic at PPL Center January 28-30. The Capital BlueCross AHL All-Star Classic weekend includes a Phan Fest during the day on Saturday, January 28 and a Tailgate Party that evening, followed by the AHL All-Star Skills Competition on Sunday, January 29 and the 2017 AHL All-Star Game on Monday, January 30. Don’t miss this once-in-a-lifetime event. Packages starting at just $67 for the 2017 AHL All-Star Classic weekend are on sale now and include admission to Saturday’s Phan Fest & Tailgate Party, Sunday’s AHL All-Star Skills Competition and Monday’s All-Star Game. To purchase tickets, please visit www.phantomshockey.com or www.pplcenter.com.
The Phantoms are coming off their 20th Anniversary Season and second campaign in the Lehigh Valley playing at the state-of-the-art PPL Center. Established in 1996, the Phantoms spent their first 13 seasons at the Spectrum in Philadelphia before re-locating to Glens Falls, New York in 2009 where the team spent the next five seasons as the Adirondack Phantoms. A new era of Phantoms hockey began in the fall of 2014 when the Lehigh Valley Phantoms began play at the state-of-the-art PPL Center. Through 19 incredibly successful campaigns, the Phantoms have captured two Calder Cup Championships (1998, 2005), two Conference Championships (1998, 2005), two Regular Season Titles (1996-97, 1997-98) and four Division Championships (1996-97, 1997-98, 1998-99, 2003-04).