February 23, 2016
Friday, February 26 (7:05 p.m.) – Hartford Wolf Pack @ Lehigh Valley Phantoms
Saturday, February 27 (7:05 p.m.) – Utica Comets @ Lehigh Valley Phantoms
(meLVin’s Birthday Bash.)
Sunday, February 28 (5:00 p.m.) – Lehigh Valley Phantoms @ Hartford Wolf Pack
The Lehigh Valley Phantoms (25-25-4, 54 pts., 7th Atlantic Division) enter the week as one of the hottest teams in the American Hockey League. With points in all three games last weekend, the Phantoms have now garnered at least one point in nine of the team’s last 13 games overall going an impressive 8-4-1 during their recent surge.
Lehigh Valley returns to action this Friday, February 26 when it welcomes the Hartford Wolf Pack, the AHL affiliate of the New York Rangers, to PPL Center. Hartford (27-24-2, 56 pts., 6th Atlantic Division) won two of three games last week claiming a 3-2 victory over the Providence Bruins on Wednesday before capturing a convincing 7-2 triumph at the Springfield Falcons on Saturday. The Wolf Pack then closed their week with a 6-2 setback at home on Sunday to the Binghamton Senators.
Friday’s collision will mark the third of six total meetings during the 2015-2016 regular season between Lehigh Valley and Hartford with the Wolf Pack having claimed each of the first two head-to-head tilts. After a 3-1 win at XL Center in Hartford on November 21, the Wolf Pack hung on for a 2-1 victory at PPL Center on January 16. Separated by just two standings points entering the weekend, the Phantoms and Wolf Pack will face off four times over the course of the next month beginning with Friday’s collision.
Then, on Saturday, February 27, the Phantoms host the Utica Comets, the AHL affiliate of the Vancouver Canucks, for the final time this year. Utica (25-18-8, 58 pts., 3rd North Division) earned just one win in three tries last week grabbing a 5-2 victory over the Portland Pirates on Wednesday before incurring 5-4 setback to the Syracuse Crunch on Friday followed by a 3-2 overtime defeat against the Albany Devils on Saturday. Despite the two losses last week, the Comets still enter the week having won seven of their last 10 games overall.
Saturday’s game, which features meLVin’s Birthday Bash, marks the fourth and final meeting of the 2015-16 regular season between the Phantoms and Comets with the two sides having alternated victories through the first three meetings. After a 7-1 setback in Utica on November 25, Lehigh Valley exacted a little revenge with a 3-1 triumph at Utica Memorial Auditorium on December 2. In the most recent collision, the Comets earned a 5-2 win at PPL Center on February 13.
A limited number of tickets remain for both Friday and Saturday’s games and can be secured now at pplcenter.com, by calling 610-347-TIXX  or in-person at the Mealey’s Furniture Box Office at PPL Center [701 Hamilton Street].
Lehigh Valley then concludes this week’s action on Sunday, February 28 when the Phantoms travel to XL Center in Hartford for a 5:00 p.m. rematch with the Wolf Pack. Be sure to catch all the action on FOX 1470-AM, online at www.fox1470.com or via the iHeartRadio app beginning with “Countdown to Faceoff” at 4:20 p.m.
- Phantoms By The Numbers
- Wingers Chris Conner and Taylor Leier enter the week tied for the team lead with 38 points. Conner has produced at least one point in 14 of his last 15 games and has compiled an impressive seven goals, 15 assists and 22 points during his recent surge. Meanwhile, Leier has registered eight goals, 10 assists and 18 points over his last 13 outings.
- Winger Petr Straka enters the week tied for second among all Phantoms with 17 goals and third among all active Lehigh Valley skaters with 31 total points. The third-year forward recorded five assists in three games during the Phantoms productive weekend last week.
- Forward Phil DeSimone enters the week having tallied seven points (3 goals, 4 assists) over his last six games.
- Lehigh Valley’s power play has produced 18 man-advantage markers over the team’s last 13 games. During that stretch, the Phantoms’ power play is 18-for-72 (25.0 percent)
Friday, February 19: Springfield Falcons 1 – Lehigh Valley Phantoms 2
Cole Bardreau (8th) and Aaron Palushaj (10th) both scored while All-Star goaltender Anthony Stolarz delivered a sensational 37-save performance as the Phantoms earned a 2-1 win over the Springfield Falcons in front of 8,513 fans at PPL Center. Winger Petr Straka assisted on both conversions as Lehigh Valley skated in front of its 14th standing room-only sellout this season.
Saturday, February 20: Bridgeport Sound Tigers 5 – Lehigh Valley Phantoms 4 (SO)
Taylor Leier (16th, 17th) notched two goals and an assist and Chris Conner chipped in a pair of helpers as the Phantoms erased a two-goal, third-period deficit en route to a critical standings points in a 5-4 shootout decision with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers in front of 8,852 fans at PPL Center. Phil DeSimone (2nd) and Adam Comrie (2nd) also scored for Lehigh Valley while Anthony Stolarz answered 26 of Bridgeport’s 30 total shots in the game.
The come-from-behind effort came in front of the Phantoms’ fourth consecutive capacity crowd and the 15th standing room-only sellout at PPL Center this year.
Sunday, February 21: Lehigh Valley Phantoms 5 – Springfield Falcons 4
Mark Alt (4th) scored with just 2.8 seconds remaining in regulation capping a tremendous third-period comeback by the Phantoms that netted Lehigh Valley a 5-4 triumph over the Springfield Falcons inside MassMutual Center. Adam Comrie (3rd) and Phil DeSimone (3rd) scored earlier in the third period to help erase a two-goal deficit after Cole Bardreau (8th) connected in the first frame followed by a Tyrell Goulbourne (7th) tally in the middle stanza.
Making his third straight start in goal, Anthony Stolarz earned the victory with 34 saves on 38 Falcons shots while Lehigh Valley’s power play produced its second straight multi-goal performance with a 2-for-7 effort.
Service Electric’s TV2 Sports will be broadcasting live all of the Phantoms’ 10 remaining regular season home games. If you can’t make it out to the rink, be sure to catch all the exciting action live in HD quality with Steve Degler, Peter Zingoni, Doug Heater and Kristi Fulkerson! Pre-game coverage begins with “Phantoms Front and Center” 30 minutes before puck drop. And don’t miss “Phantoms – Breaking the Ice” every Monday from 7:00 – 7:30 p.m. throughout the season live at Chickie’s & Pete’s at PPL Center!
Be sure to also catch each and every Phantoms game this season live on Fox Sports 1470 AM, online at Fox1470.com 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. “Countdown to Faceoff” begins 45 minutes prior to puck drop.
Tickets for all of the Phantoms’ 10 remaining regular season home games are available now online at pplcenter.com, by calling 610-347-TIXX  or in-person at the Mealey’s Furniture Box Office at PPL Center (7th & Hamilton).
RISE UP! 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 and groups for the 2015-2016 season of Phantoms hockey by calling 610-224-GOAL .
In the midst of their 20th season of operation, the Phantoms are coming off their Inaugural Season as the Lehigh Valley Phantoms playing at the state-of-the-art 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).