Phantoms Warm Up: Lehigh Valley vs Bridgeport 2/15/19 Game Preview

The Lehigh Valley Phantoms will host the Bridgeport Sound Tigers inside of PPL Center tonight at 7:05 p.m.  This will be the fifth overall meeting between the two teams and the third in downtown Allentown this season.  In their last meeting, on February 1, the Orange and Black brought home a 7-5 victory raising their head-to-head record against Bridgeport to 2-1-0-1 on the season.

Currently ranked fourth in the Atlantic Division, with a 26-19-3-2 record, the Phantoms will be looking to take down a Sound Tigers team that is just five points ahead of them in the standings and 6-4-0-0 over its past 10 games.

The Phantoms, who are beginning to become healthier by the day, will see another new lineup this weekend as newcomers see playing time.  Since this past weekend’s three contests, Byron Froese, David Schlemko, Brian Elliott, Samuel Morin and Pascal Laberge have joined the team.

Phantoms vs. Bridgeport Sound Tigers 2-15-19

Phantoms Leading Scorers

  1. Greg Carey (49 GP, 21G-25A, 46 PTS)
  2. Chris Conner (49 GP, 12G-23A, 35 PTS)
  3. T.J. Brennan (41 GP, 7G-27A, 34 PTS)
  4. Byron Froese (46 GP, 14G-16A, 30 PTS)
  5. Mike Vecchione (50 GP, 11G-19A, 30 PTS)

Sound Tigers Leading Scorers

  1. Chris Bourque (50 GP, 10G-30A, 40 PTS)
  2. Otto Koivula (48 GP, 15G-22A, 37 PTS)
  3. Sebastian Aho (43 GP, 4G-27A, 31 PTS)
  4. Tanner Fritz (45 GP, 11G-18A, 29 PTS)
  5. Travis St. Denis (52 GP, 11G-17A, 28 PTS)

Prior Meetings This Season

Feb. 1 — LV 7, BRI 5
Jan. 26 — BRI 4, LV 1
Oct. 21 — BRI 4, LV 3
Oct. 6 — LV 6, BRI 3

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Snap Shots

  • Forward Greg Carey currently leads the charge against the Sound Tigers this season with three goals and two assists for five points in just four games
  • Just a season ago, Lehigh Valley posted a 7-1-0-0 record against Bridgeport and outscored their opponents 33-16 in eight meetings
  • Defenseman Samuel Morin is set to play in his first regular-season game since the 2018 AHL Outdoor Classic on January 20, 2018
  • As of Friday morning, the Phantoms still have the first-ranked penalty kill in the entire AHL, operating at a rate of 87.6 percent

Players to Watch

Mike Vecchione recorded a career high four points (1G-3A) in the Phantoms last meeting with the Sound Tigers on February 1.  This season he ranks fifth on the Lehigh Valley roster in scoring with 30 points (11G-19A) across 50 games.  Vecchione also has eight points (1G-7A) in his past 10 contests, so keep an eye on him to land on the score sheet tonight.

Byron Froese will enter into the Phantoms lineup for the first time tonight and will likely be eager to make a solid first impression with his new team.  During his time as the captain of the Laval Rocket, before being acquired in a trade this past week, Froese had 14 goals and 16 assists for 30 points across 46 games this season.

Recent Transactions

February 12, 2019: The Philadelphia Flyers recalled goaltender Mike McKenna from the Lehigh Valley Phantoms and loaned goaltender Brian Elliott to the Phantoms on a conditioning loan

February 14, 2019: The Lehigh Valley Phantoms recalled goaltender Branden Komm from the Reading Royals and released forward Josh MacDonald from his PTO

February 14, 2019: The Philadelphia Flyers loaned defenseman Samuel Morin to the Lehigh Valley Phantoms on a conditioning loan

February 14, 2019: The Philadelphia Flyers activated forward Pascal Laberge from from injured, non-roster and loaned him to the Lehigh Valley Phantoms

The Road Ahead

The Lehigh Valley Phantoms begin a home-and-home series with the rival Hershey Bears tomorrow night in Chocoloatetown at 7 p.m.  The team will then return home to PPL Center for a rematch with the Bears on Sunday at 5:05 p.m.  Sunday’s game will also be meLVin’s Birthday Bash, presented by Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom, featuring numerous mascots and a special appearance by Gritty.  There will also be a postgame skate with players that is available to anyone who purchases tickets and has a pair of skates.  Get your tickets to see the Phantoms do battle with one of their most heated rivals by clicking HERE.