Pens Squander Opportunity

April 7, 2019

The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins received the outside help they needed in the playoff chase. Unfortunately, they weren’t able to help themselves.

A pair of shorthanded goals were their downfall against the Lehigh Valley Phantoms.

Cole Bardreau scored twice with Lehigh Valley a man down, and netminder Alex Lyon fended off the Penguins’ rally in a 4-2 decision at PPL Center. The Penguins remained three points out of the final Atlantic Division playoff spot, as Providence lost to Bridgeport.

Ryan Haggerty and rookie Brandon Hawkins both scored for the Penguins.

Turning point

Whether or not the call was correct, the game turned when a Penguins goal was washed out early in the second period.

On a delayed Phantoms penalty with the Penguins down, 2-1, Adam Johnson drove to the net and put a shot on Lyon that trickled off his pads and over the goal line.

However, the referee in the corner immediately signaled no goal as the Penguins


The Phantoms broke free on the ensuing kill and Bardreau scored crashing the net on the rebound to restore their two-goal lead at 2:10, and cruised from there.

Three stars

■Lyon was solid in the third as the Penguins tried to rally, keeping the puck out amid a scramble around the net after Hawkins’ goal. He made 33 stops and was star No. 3.

■Byron Froese scored for the fourth time in five games against the Penguins for insurance in the third period and added an assist as the No. 2 star.

■Bardreau’s shorthanded goals were his third and fourth of the season and helped him earn top honors.

Stat to know

The Penguins committed no minor penalties in the game — their only infraction was a fighting major for Sam Lafferty.

The takeaway

Obviously, this was a big opportunity missed to close ground on Providence. However, the end results of today’s games could still

put the Penguins in a

decent position for the final weekend.

Lyon deserves credit for his play as the game went on, and Lehigh Valley took advantage of the good chances it received during the contest.

Game notes

■Defenseman Calen Addison and forward Jordy Bellerive, signed to ATOs on Friday, made their AHL debuts for the Penguins.

■Goaltender Tristan Jarry started after being a healthy scratch Friday and made 19 saves.

Up next

These two teams play today at the same rink, with puck drop slated for 3:05 p.m.

Contact the writer:

tpiccotti@citizensvoice.com; 570-821-2089;

@CVPiccotti on Twitter

Penguins 1 0 1 — 2 Lehigh Valley 2 1 1 — 4

First period: Scoring — 1. LV, Goulbourne (de Haas, Froese), 7:35; 2, LV, Bardreau, 16:01 (SH); 3, WBS, Haggerty (Lafferty, Miletic), 17:13 (PP). Penalties — LV, Palmquist, roughing 15:47.

Second period: Scoring — 4, LV, Bradreau (Twarynski), 2:10 (SH). Penalties — WBS, Lafferty, fighting 0:36; LV, Aube-Kubel, fighting 0:36; LV, de Haas, hooking 0:44; LV, Twarynski, interference 11:48.

Third period: Scoring — 5, LV, Froese (Samuelsson, Aube-Kubel), 9:12; 6, WBS, Hawkins (Summers, Blandisi), 14:22. Penalties — None.

Shots on goal: WBS 7 13 15 - 35; LV 6 11 6 - 23.

Goaltenders: WBS, Jarry (19 saves on 23 shots); LV, Lyon (33 saves on 35 shots).

Power-play opportunities: WBS 1 for 3; LV 0 for 0.

Referees: Mike Dietrich and Michael Duco. Linesmen: Tom DellaFranco and Tom George.

AHL standings

EASTERN Atlantic Division


North Division GP W L OL SOL Pts GF GA

WESTERN Central Division GP W L OL SOL Pts GF GA

Pacific Division GP W L OL SOL Pts GF GA

 Two points are awarded for a win, one point for an overtime or shootout loss.

Friday’s Games

 Hershey 3, Belleville 1  Toronto 2, Utica 1  Providence 8, Bridgeport 6  Syracuse 6, Rochester 1  Penguins 4, Binghamton 0  Cleveland 3, Laval 2  Milwaukee 4, Chicago 3  Texas 2, Rockford 1  San Diego 6, Ontario 1  San Jose 3, Grand Rapids 1

Saturday’s Games

 Laval 5, Hershey 2  Manitoba 1, Stockton 0  San Jose 5, Grand Rapids 4, OT  Springfield 5, Charlotte 3  Belleville 3, Cleveland 1  Bridgeport 4, Providence 3  Milwaukee 5, Iowa 1  Rochester 5, Syracuse 2  Utica 4, Hartford 0  Binghamton 4, Toronto 3, OT  Lehigh Valley 4, Penguins 2  Chicago 3, Colorado 2  Rockford 4, Texas 3, SO  San Antonio 4, Bakersfield 2

Today’s Games

 Springfield at Charlotte, 1 p.m.  Binghamton at Hartford, 3 p.m.  Stockton at Manitoba, 3 p.m.  Utica at Providence, 3:05 p.m.  Penguins at Lehigh Valley, 3:05 p.m.  Colorado at Chicago, 4 p.m.  Tucson at Ontario, 6 p.m.

Monday’s Game

 Rochester at Cleveland, 7 p.m.

Tuesday’s Game

 Lehigh Valley at Hershey, 7 p.m.