Phantoms Weekly – Four Games for Phantoms in Season’s Final Week

April 13, 2015

This Week

Tuesday, April 14 (7:05 PM) – Hershey Bears @ Lehigh Valley Phantoms

Friday, April 17 (7:30 PM) – Lehigh Valley Phantoms @ Norfolk Admirals

Saturday, April 18 (7:00 PM) – Lehigh Valley Phantoms @ Hershey Bears

Sunday, April 19 (5:05 PM) – Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins @ Lehigh Valley Phantoms
(Giant Canned Food Drive! All donations will be collected by the Volunteer Center and distributed to Second Harvest.)


There’s no rest for the Lehigh Valley Phantoms in the final week of the 2014-2015 regular season as the Phantoms close their inaugural season in the Lehigh Valley with four games this week, including two at PPL Center.

JustSports PhotographyThe action resumes Tuesday, April 14th when the Phantoms wrap up their four-game home stand as they welcome the Hershey Bears to downtown Allentown for the final time this season. Tuesday’s contest will mark the 11th of 12 total meetings between the Phantoms and Bears with Lehigh Valley holding a 4-6 record overall against Hershey with a 3-2 mark in games played in downtown Allentown.

Lehigh Valley (32-32-7-1, 72 pts.) enters the week tied with the Binghamton Senators for third in the East Division while Hershey
(44-21-5-3, 96 pts.) currently sits three points ahead of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins for the top spot in the East. Winners of two of three games last week, the Bears enter the week second overall in the Eastern Conference.

P0410_0716The Phantoms then hit the road on Friday, April 17th as they head up to Norfolk for their final meeting of the year with the Admirals. Lehigh Valley is an impressive 6-0-1 against Norfolk this season with each of the first seven head-to-head showdowns having been decided by just a single goal, including five overtime/shootout decisions. The two sides split a weekend series at PPL Center this past weekend with the Phantoms earning a 2-1 shootout triumph on Friday before Norfolk earned its first win in the season series with a 3-2 overtime win on Saturday.

Norfolk (26-38-6-4, 62 pts.) is currently fifth among the five teams in the East Division and enters the week tied with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers for the lowest standings points total in the Eastern Conference. Saturday’s win was just the fourth for the Admirals over their last 20 games as Norfolk has gone just 4-12-4 during its recent slide.

Straka 3.28.15Lehigh Valley then travels to the Giant Center in Hershey on Saturday, April 18th for its final meeting of the year with the Bears before concluding its 2014-2015 regular season on Sunday, April 19th against the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins back at PPL Center. The Phantoms are 5-5-1 this season against the Penguins and have posted a 2-2-1 mark in five prior showdowns in downtown Allentown. Sunday’s contest will mark the fifth head-to-head collision between the Pennsylvania rivals over the final 29 days of the regular season.

The Giant Canned Food Drive will take place during Sunday’s game with all donations to be collected by the Volunteer Center and then distributed to Second Harvest.

A limited number of tickets for Lehigh Valley’s final two home games of the 2014-2015 regular season (Tuesday, April 14 vs. HER & Sunday, April 19 vs. WBS) are available now at, by calling 610-347-TIXX (8499) or in-person at the Mealey’s Furniture Box Office at PPL Center (701 Hamilton).

Phantoms By The Numbers

  • Lehigh Valley enters the week boasting the AHL’s fourth-highest average attendance (8,162 fans/game). With Tuesday’s game against the Hershey Bears, the Phantoms will surpass the 300,000 mark for total fans to have enjoyed Phantoms hockey at PPL Cetner this season. Finally, Lehigh Valley has enjoyed 21 total sellouts so far during the Inaugural Season of Phantoms hockey in downtown Allentown.
  • JustSports PhotographyJason Akeson enters the week just one goal shy of tying Paul Healey and Jon Matsumoto for fifth on the Phantoms’ all-time list with 81 total goals. With an assist in Friday’s 2-1 shootout victory over the Norfolk Admirals, he moved into sole possession of fourth place on the franchise’s all-time scoring list with 223 total points. The Phantoms’ leading scorer in each of the last three seasons, he enters the season’s final week just four points back of Nick Cousins in this year’s scoring race.
  • Rob Zepp enters the week having started nine of Lehigh Valley’s last 10 games overall. During that time, the 33-year-old netminder has produced a 2.40 goals-against average coupled with a .923 save percentage. What’s more, he’s amassed six 30-save performances during that recent run. All told, Zepp has compiled a 20-18-4 overall record this season with the Phantoms to go along with a 2.63 goals-against average and .917 save percentage.

Last Week

Wednesday, April 8: Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins 3 – Lehigh Valley Phantoms 0

P0408_0134Rob Zepp registered 29 saves while Penguins goaltender Matt Murray countered with 30 saves of his own as Wilkes-Barre/Scranton outlasted the Phantoms 3-0 in front of 7,456 fans at PPL Center.

Making his North American professional debut, Kasperi Kapanen paced the Penguins offensive attack with a goal and an assist while Tom Kuhnhackl chipped in a pair of goals for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. Kuhnhackl’s first conversion came on the power play, which snapped a string of 18 consecutive successful penalty kills by the Phantoms at PPL Center.

Friday, April 10: Norfolk Admirals 1 – Lehigh Valley Phantoms 2 (SO)

P0410_0718Scott Laughton scored Lehigh Valley’s only goal in regulation and notched the game-winning conversion in the shootout as the Phantoms outlasted the Norfolk Admirals 2-1 in front of 8,143 fans at PPL Center. Petr Straka also scored in the shootout for Lehigh Valley as the Phantoms earned their league-leading seventh shootout victory this season. Lehigh Valley is now 7-1 in games decided via shootouts this year.

Rob Zepp backstopped the victory with 33 saves in regulation followed by a 2-for-3 performance in the shootout as he claimed his 20th victory of the season. Laughton’s regulation tally came on the power play as the Phantoms improved to 25-11-1 when netting a man-advantage marker this season. Meanwhile, Lehigh Valley’s penalty kill was a perfect 3-for-3 in the triumph.

Saturday, April 11: Norfolk Admirals 3 – Lehigh Valley Phantoms 2 (OT)

P0411_0273Kevin Goumas and Blair Jones both scored in the final three minutes of regulation as the Phantoms erased a pair of one-goal third-period deficits before Max Friberg ended the back-and-forth affair in overtime as Norfolk skated to its first win in the season series with a 3-2 overtime win in front of 8,649 fans at PPL Center. The game moved Lehigh Valley into a tie for the third-most post-regulation decisions (22) this season as the Phantoms moved to 7-7 in overtime and 14-8 overall in games decided via overtime or a shootout.

After nine straight starts by Rob Zepp, Anthony Stolarz got the nod between the pipes and turned in an impressive 31-save performance while Ryan Faragher earned the win for Norfolk with 29 saves on 31 Lehigh Valley shots. Saturday’s game featured the 21st standing room-only sellout crowd at PPL Center this season.

Broadcast Coverage

Service Electric’s TV2 Sports will be broadcasting live each of the Phantoms’ two remaining regular season home games. If you can’t make it out to the rink, be sure to catch all the exciting action in high definition with Steve Degler and former Flyers and Phantoms goaltender Brian Boucher! Pre-game coverage begins with “Phantoms Front and Center” with Doug Heater and Kristi Fulkerson 30 minutes before puck drop. And don’t miss the final 2014-15 edition of “Phantoms – Breaking the Ice” on Monday, April 20th from 7:00 – 8:00 PM live at Chickie’s & Pete’s (701 Hamilton Street)!

Be sure to also catch each and every Phantoms game this season live on Fox Sports 1470 AM, online at or via the iHeartRadio app! Join Voice of the Phantoms, Bob Rotruck, for all of the heart-pumping action of Lehigh Valley Phantoms hockey whether the team is at home or on the road. Nazareth Pallet Countdown to Faceoff begins 45 minutes prior to puck drop.

Ticket Information

Tickets for each of the Phantoms’ final two regular season home games are available now at the Mealey’s Furniture Box Office at PPL Center (7th & Hamilton), by calling 610-347-TIXX (8499) or online at

Check it out! Don’t miss the action and fun of Lehigh Valley Phantoms hockey at PPL Center in downtown Allentown! Contact the Phantoms Front Office for information on season tickets for the 2015-2016 season of Phantoms hockey by calling 610-224-GOAL (4625).

In their 19th season of operation, the Phantoms are currently in the midst of their Inaugural Season as the Lehigh Valley Phantoms playing at the brand-new PPL Center. Established in 1996, the Philadelphia Phantoms spent their first 13 seasons at the Spectrum 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 18 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).