Lehigh Valley Clobbers Charlotte 6-1
December 10, 2022
Lehigh Valley, PA – The Phantoms officially announced on Saturday morning that NHL veteran Artem Anisimov had signed an AHL contract for the remainder of the season. The highly acclaimed center responded with a monster performance on that same night with two goals and two assists in paving the way for Lehigh Valley’s 6-1 rout of the Charlotte Checkers at PPL Center.
Olle Lycksell (6th) had a goal and two assists while Tyson Foerster (8th), Kieffer Bellows (2nd) and Linus Hogberg (1st) also scored for the Orange and Black. Lehigh valley once again dominate with special teams as they potted three power-play goals against the Checkers for a second time in a little over a week. The Phantoms swept the weekend series and went 3-1-0 over the mini-series the two teams played in which they saw each other four times over the course of nine days.
Lehigh Valley (11-9-2) struck for three goals in the final five minutes of the first period to open the floodgates. Anisimov scored on the power play on a pretty feed from the right wing by Olle Lycksell finding his teammate on the backdoor with 4:16 remaining in the first period. The tally was reminiscent of a similar play the two connected on just two weeks earlier against the Rochester Americans.
Kieffer Bellows scored his second goal of the weekend after a misplay by Checkers’ goalie J-F Berube depositing his opportunity from the side of the net and off the leg of the former Phantoms’ netminder. Bellows has a four-game point streak since joining the Phantoms last week. It was the second night in a row that Artem Anisimov and Kieffer Bellows scored the first two goals of the game in that same order.
Foerster scored with 33 seconds remaining in the period for the team’s second power-play goal of the night and his eighth goal of the season to give the hosts a 3-0 lead at the first intermission. Foerster’s fourth power-play conversion of the season provided him with his team-leading 18th point.
The offense kept it coming in the second period. Linus Hogberg scored his first goal in two years on a drive from the point beating Berube past the left skate at 6:27 into the middle frame.
The Phantoms struck once again on the power play with Olle Lycksell finding the back of the net on a big blast from the right circle for his fifth with Zamula collecting a long rebound at the blue line to set up the team’s third power-play strike of the night. Anisimov had his second assist on the play while on his way to a four-point night.
In their four games against Charlotte (12-9-3) from December 2-10, the Phantoms’ power play racked up 8 goals on 18 power play chances.
Lehigh Valley has gone 11-for-25 (44%) on the power play over the last five games. They have scored three power-play goals in a game twice in the last eight days, both times against Charlotte.
Artem Anisimov closed the team’s scoring with his second goal of the game and his fifth in his first three PPL Center appearances by finishing off a 2-on-0 breakaway with Adam Brooks. Garrett Wilson was taken down at the Phantoms line but was able to knock the puck forward from his stomach to spring Brooks free for a breakaway. At the last instant, Brooks dished to Anisimov on the left of the cage for the slam dunk goal the most they have scored in any game this season.
The Checkers broke up Sam Ersson’s shutout bid with 10:08 to go in the third period on a power-play goal of their own which NHL vet Riley Nash deflected between his legs and past the stick of Ersson on a shot by Grigori Denisenko. Ersson finished the game with 19 saves.
The Phantoms hit the road on Friday, December 16 when they begin a home-and-home series with the Providence Bruins whom they defeated in two straight games in Providence back in November.
Lehigh Valley returns to PPL Center on Saturday, December 17 for the annual Teddy Bear Toss Night presented by Big Woody’s.
1st 15:14 – LV A. Anisimov (4) (Lycksell, Wilson) (PP) 1-0
1st 16:25 – LV K. Bellows (2) (O’Reilly, Desnoyers) 2-0
1st 19:27 – LV T. Foerster (8) (Anisimov, Lycksell) (PP) 3-0
2nd 6:27 – LV L. Hogberg (1) (Bellerive, Wisdom) 4-0
2nd 14:21 – LV O. Lycksell (5) (Anisimov, Zamula) (PP) 5-0
3rd 7:10 – LV A. Anisimov (5) (Brooks, Wilson) 6-0
3rd 9:52 – CLT R. Nash (8) (Denisenko, Kinnunen) (PP) 6-1
LV 18 – CLT 20
LV 3/7, CLT 1/6
LV – S. Ersson (W) (8-7-1) (19/20)
CLT – J. Berube (L) (1-1-0) (12/18)
Lehigh Valley (11-9-2)
Friday, December 16 (7:05) at Providence Bruins
Saturday, December 17 (7:05) vs. PROVIDENCE BRUINS
Sunday, December 18 (5:00) at Hershey Bears
Wednesday, December 21 (7:05) vs. HERSHEY BEARS
Saturday, December 10 (7:05) vs. Charlotte Checkers – Phantoms Hat Giveaway Presented by Service Electric
Saturday, December 17 (7:05) vs. Providence Bruins – Teddy Bear Toss Presented by Big Woody’s
Wednesday, December 21 (7:05) vs. Hershey Bears – Pregame Happy Hour, $2 Miller Lites and Yuenglings
Saturday, December 31 (7:05) vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins – New Year’s Eve Celebration presented by Penn Community Bank. Including festivities after the game right outside the arena to ring in 2023!