Recap: Phantoms 4, Ice Caps 3
Thrilling Comeback at The Rock
Down but not out, the Adirondack Phantoms thrived under pressure and overcame a 2-0 deficit to pull out an exciting 4-3 victory on the road at the St. John's IceCaps in the finale of the weekend series in Newfoundland. Adirondack's victory was retribution for a one-goal loss the night before.
A pair of NHL'ers assigned to the Phantoms to begin the season scored back-to-back key goals to provide the win. Zac Rinaldo gave Adirondack the lead at 3-2 and then Brayden Schenn's sharp-angle drive from the left-wing corner less than a minute later made it 4-2.
Brandon Manning and Shane Harper also scored back-to-back goals earlier in the game. Trailing 2-0 in the second period, they drove home the Phantoms first goals of the night less than 30 seconds apart.
The game was an edge-of-your-seat thrilled with great chances and diving stops on both ends of the ice throughout the night. The Phantoms improved to 2-2-0 with the victory while the IceCaps, the affiliate of the Winnipeg Jets, also had their record move to 2-2-0.
Scott Munroe made 31 saves on 34 shots for the win as he improved to 2-1-0.
After the 2-1 setback in Friday's game in which Adirondack actually hit the post FIVE time, head coach Terry Murray encouraged his team to not get frustrated by the bad luck and to keep doing the right things. The tenacity paid off in the form of a hard-earned victory Saturday night and was especially important when the Phantoms found themselves down 2-0 before successfully pushing forth with the comeback.
John Albert provided the IceCaps with a 1-0 lead at 12:54 of the first period right off a faceoff win as he muscled his way to the net and pushed a drive through Munroe.
Garrett Roe had a chance to tie the score in the second period when his shot on the breakaway hit off the post while he was hauled down. He was granted a second opportunity via a penalty shot but was denied on the right leg of St. John's goalie Eddie Pasquale as the IceCaps kept the 1-0 advantage.
Just a few seconds after Garrett Roe's penalty shot, Ivan Telegin scored his first professional goal to give St. John's the 2-0 lead at 8:06 of the second. The fluky goal from behind the net appeared to bounce off the paddle or skate of Munroe and directly into the net.
Adirondack immediately came out with even more energy after finding themselves in a 2-0 deficit. While the Phantoms were on the attack in the zone and St. John's was trying to clear, Shane Harper was able to draw a cross-checking by Ben Maxwell for a Phantoms' power play.
Brandon Manning's slapshot from the right point at 9:22 beat Pasquale to get Adirondack on the scoreboard. The 22 year old defenseman who serves as an alternate captain for the Phantoms scored six goals with Adirondack in his rookie season and got a late-season shot in the NHL when he played in four games for the Flyers last March.
It was back-to-back for Adirondack to make it 2-2 as Shane Harper would score his first of the season just 27 seconds after Manning's tally. A cross-ice feed from Eric Wellwood almost went in off St. John's defenseman Derek Meech. Pasquale made a diving stop on the deflected puck but was still down when Harper gained possession in the right circle to bury his opportunity.
The third-year pro, Harper, was making his season debut after he was a healthy-scratch in the first three games. The Valencia, CA native scored 13 goals for the Phantoms last year, the most famous of which was his overtime winner in the Outdoor Classic in front of over 45,000 fans in Philadelphia.
The 2-2 deadlock would remain well into the third period with both Munroe for the Phantoms and Pasquale for the IceCaps making several impressive stops in an exciting and open contest.
After a back-and-forth series of chances, Oliver Lauridsen was able to poke away a St. John's chance and that ultimately resulted in Zac Rinaldo rushing up the right-wing on a 2-on-1 with Harry Zolnierczyk flying up the other side. Rinaldo appeared to give a quick look across but then shot the puck himself beating Pasquale far-side at 12:06 to give the Phantoms the lead at 3-2.
Rinaldo played in 66 games with Philadelphia last season scoring two goals and accumulating 232 penalty minutes. But on the go-ahead tally he looked like a pure goal-scorer as he buried a perfect shot.
Less than a minute later, it was another perfect shot from another NHL'er with the Phantoms. Young talent Brayden Schenn hustled up the left-wing, got past defenseman Zack Redmond, and from the corner took a somewhat unexpected shot that maybe caught Pasquale off-guard. It was Schenn's third of the season and his first since a two-goal game in the season opener.
Schenn has nine goals in just 11 games played with Adirondack in his career. He scored six goals in seven games early last season with the Phantoms before joining the Flyers and lighting up 12 more goals in 54 games.
St. John's capitalized on a late power play to pull within one on a Zack Redmond slapper from center-point past Munroe with 3:58 remaining.
Munroe covered on Alex Burmistrov's shanked one-timer at the end of the game to secure the win.
Scott Munroe's victory is his 66th with the Phantoms franchise, third-most all-time and just five behind Antero Nittymaki for second place.
Both teams were 1-for-4 on the power play. St. John's outshot the Phantoms 34-32. Adirondack was leading in shots for most of the game but a St. John's surge at the end of the game when they trailed by two goals and then by one ultimately pushed them away in the statistic.
The team concludes a long week of travel tomorrow afternoon and evening when they return to Glens Falls. The Phantoms departed Tuesday evening and have been on the road since.
Adirondack concludes their series of four straight road games when they play at the Albany Devils on Friday night in game 1 of the 12-game Time Warner Cable Cup rivalry series.
The Phantoms' next home game is Saturday night against the Rochester Americans, affiliate of the Buffalo Sabres. A Halloween Costume Parade on ice will be featured between periods and fans can enjoy the All-You-Can-Eat Pasta Buffet in Heritage Hall for only $12. Purchase your game tickets as well as tickets for the buffet in advance by calling the Phantoms at 518-480-3355.
This weekend was the Phantoms' lone visit to St. John's. The IceCaps will visit Glens Falls for the first time ever on Wednesday, November 28
Adirondack Phantoms 4 at St. John's IceCaps 3 - Status: Final
Saturday, October 20, 2012 - Mile One Centre
Adirondack 0 2 2 - 4
St. John's 1 1 1 - 3
1st Period-1, St. John's, Albert 1 (Gregoire), 12:54. Penalties-Lauridsen Adk (tripping), 4:00; King Stj (holding), 4:13; Rinaldo Adk (hooking), 17:44.
2nd Period-2, St. John's, Telegin 1 8:06. 3, Adirondack, Manning 1 (Syvret, Schenn), 9:22 (PP). 4, Adirondack, Harper 1 9:49. Penalties-Maxwell Stj (cross-checking), 8:20; Meech Stj (hooking), 13:23; served by McGinn Adk (bench minor - too many men), 15:57; Pasquale Stj (delay of game - restricted area), 19:28.
3rd Period-5, Adirondack, Rinaldo 1 (Bordson), 12:06. 6, Adirondack, Schenn 3 (Holmstrom), 12:57. 7, St. John's, Redmond 2 (Burmistrov, O'Neill), 16:02 (PP). Penalties-Gustafsson Adk (interference), 15:47; Zolnierczyk Adk (hooking), 18:45; O'Neill Stj (diving), 18:45.
Shots on Goal-Adirondack 14-10-8-32. St. John's 10-9-15-34.
Power Play Opportunities-Adirondack 1 / 4; St. John's 1 / 4.
Goalies-Adirondack, Munroe 2-1-0 (34 shots-31 saves). St. John's, Pasquale 1-2-0 (32 shots-28 saves).
Referees-Terry Koharski (10).
Linesmen-Jim Vail (5), Joe Maynard (24).