T-Birds Break Late Tie in 4-2 Win over Phantoms
November 8, 2023
Springfield, MA – Wade Allison scored his first goal of the season and Cooper Marody struck on the power play in the second period but the Springfield Thunderbirds broke a late tie in this early game for a 4-2 win on a Wednesday morning start in Western Mass.
Adam Gaudette (10th, 11th) took just 20 seconds to score at 10:36 AM for the T-Birds and then struck for the winning goal with just 7:11 left in the third for a 3-2 lead.
Springfield (7-5-0) recorded its first regulation win against the Phantoms in four tries as Lehigh Valley’s three-game point streak came to a close. The Phantoms are 2-1-1 against the AHL affiliate of the St. Louis Blues including 1-1-1 at MassMutual Center.
Adam Gaudette knocked home a cross-ice feed from Matthew Peca on an early odd-man rush to send the screaming kids into a frenzy with an early 1-0 advantage for Springfield.
After that came a flurry of impressive denials for Parker Gahagen who made several dazzling stops to keep the T-Birds in check while the Phantoms were finding their game.
A bouncing puck eluded a Springfield defenseman and there to pounce on the opportunity was Wade Allison who rushed up the right wing on a 2-on-1. Allison gave a look to his left before rifling a shot past Malcolm Subban with 3:56 remaining in the first to get the Phantoms on the board. Allison’s first of the year was an unassisted tally.
An intercept in the neutral zone for Hugh McGing sent MacKenzie MacEachern speeding at Gahagen on a breakaway. His third of the season beat Gahagen past the blocked to put Springfield ack ahead at 2-1 with 6:58 remaining in the second period.
But the Phantoms successfully took advantage of their first power play of the day just a couple minutes later with Marody’s wrister from the top of the right circle perfectly connecting with the upper-left corner past the right shoulder of Subban to again even the count at 2-2. Olle Lycksell recorded his first assist of the season after scoring eight goals to lead the team. Emil Andrae’s assist was also good for his first point with the Phantoms in just his third game and also his first on the ice since an injury a week-and-a-half ago.
The Phantoms had a pair of back-to-back penalty kills in the third period and continued to thrive when a man down. Gahagen made some nice stops in the stretch as well including a spectacular glove save diving across to his left to get a piece of a one-time blast from Zachary Boluc from the right dot.
But Springfield would score again at 5-on-5 with Adam Gaudette finding room in the slot to create. As Gahagen came out to challenge the AHL’s top scorer, Gaudette hung on to the puck for a tick longer and went wide to his own left to have room to push an easy backhander behind Gahagen with just 7:11 left for a 3-2 T-Birds’ advantage.
Lehigh Valley received its second power play of the game with just 5:44 remaining for a huge chance to tie but Subban was strong and the defenders in front of him recorded a couple key blocks to push through the situation.
McGing retrieved a puck along the boards deep in his own zone and an elevated clear ended up perfectly into the middle of the empty net on the Phantoms’ end with just 1:02 left to provide the final margin.
The Phantoms return to action on Saturday night with a PPL Center rivalry showdown with the defending Calder Cup Champion Hershey Bears. After Saturday’s home game comes a stretch of four straight on the road beginning with a Sunday afternoon rematch in Chocolate Town at 3:00 p.m.
1st 0:20 – SPR, A. Gaudette (10) (M. Peca, N. Walker) (0-1)
1st 16:04 – LV, W. Allison (1) (Unassisted) (1-1)
2nd 13:02 – SPR, M. MacEachern (3) (H. McGing) (1-2)
2nd 15:53 – LV, C. Marody (3) (E. Andrae, O. Lycksell) (PP) (2-2)
3rd 12:49 – SPR, A. Gaudette (11) (C. Rosen) (2-3)
3rd 18:58 – SPRm H. McGing (2) (M. MacEachern, D. Coghlan) (EN) (2-4)
LV 24 – SPR 31
LV 1/2, SPR 0/5
LV – P. Gahagen (28/31) (L) (3-2-1)
SPR M. Subban (22/24) (W) (3-3-0)
Lehigh Valley (4-5-2)
Phantoms Tickets are available HERE
Saturday, November 11 (7:05 p.m.) – Hershey Bears at Lehigh Valley Phantoms
Sunday, November 12 (3:00 p.m.) – Lehigh Valley Phantoms at Hershey Bears
Friday, November 17 (7:00 p.m.) – Lehigh Valley Phantoms at Laval Rocket
Saturday, November 18 (7:00 p.m.) – Lehigh Valley Phantoms at Belleville Senators