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Saturday in the Silo: The Phantoms Keep Grinding

Phantoms Photo via Phantoms.com

Due to some technical difficulties and the convenient absence of a Friday game, we’re visiting the silo today to check in on the Lehigh Valley boys. They faced 4 contests over the last week as the end of the season closes in with every passing day, the playoffs are all but assured and the Phantoms look to score a few more wins, and secure seeding.

Last Friday the Phantoms once again met the rival Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. Early in the game it was all Phantoms. They got the Penguins scrambling and were able to gain an early power play advantage. Maxim Lamarche converted for his 3rd of the year, with assists going to Mark Zengerle (20) and Travis Sanheim (19) coming through for the assists. That would be the only offense mounted by the Phantoms. The Penguins went on to score the next four goals and win 4-1. Alex Lyon took the loss, and made 28 saves on 31 shots.

Taking to the road, the Phantoms again took on the Penguins. Again the Phantoms took the early lead. Tyrell Gouldbourne netted his first one the year to put up the 1-0 lead. In the 2nd it turned out the be more of the same. Reece Wilcox opened the scoring again and with his third of the year, pushed the lead to 2-0. A mere 15 seconds later Danick Martel continued his torrid scoring  streak as of late for his 19th of the season. That would be the extent of the Phantoms scoring. Despite 2 3rd period goals from the Penguins, thats all the Phantoms needed. Anthony Stolarz took the win, and made 37 saves on 39 shots.

The Phantoms continued their road swing and returned to St. John’s to face the IceCaps.  The 1st period didn’t go well, as the Phantoms gave up back to back goals. The 2nd saw a similar start, as the IceCaps again scored twice. In the last minute of the period, the Phantoms chipped away at the deficit with Cole Bardreau’s 9th of the season. In the third Maxim Lamarche tallied his 4th to pull the Phantoms a bit closer with his 4th. Almost 5 minutes later Nicholas Aube-Kubel netted his 9th of the year and pulled the contest to within one. With just under two minutes to go, Tj Brennan scored his 19th and the Phantoms had erased the 4 goal whole they had been in. Tj Brennan however wasn’t done just yet, and scored his 20th just 34 seconds into overtime for the epic comeback to be completed. Anthony Stolarz made 29 saves on 34 shots and scarped out the win.

The next night, the Phantoms and IceCaps once again took to the ice. Instead of once again yielding a lead, Scott Laughton put the Lehigh boys ahead 1-0 early with his 16th of the year. The IceCaps tied things up in the 2nd as this game proved to have much more back and forth than the previous contest. They pulled ahead in the 3rd 2-1 before Taylor Leier potted his 10th with just 1:56 left. Overtime passed without incident, and both goalies held firm in the shootout. Corban Knight came out as the 4th shooter and scooted the winning shootout goal in. Anthony Stolarz held on for his 3rd straight win, making 42 saves on 44 shots. He also stopped all 4 shootout attempts he faced.

Forward of the Week 

Scott Laughton scored one goal this week. Normally that isn’t enough to merit this honor, but he’s been on fire as of late. This month he’s scored 4 goals and 4 assists. Since returning from injury he’s been a great source of secondary scoring and is proving why he’s still a highly thought of prospect.

Defenseman of the Week 

Reece Wilcox. His goal this week got him off a a brutal streak, seeing him last record a point on January 27th. He’s a young player in his first full season and with every point sets a new career high with every point. Not typically thought of when considering defensive prospects, Wilcox is a guy to remember come next year’s training camp.

It’s time to close out March for the Phantoms. They once agains welcome the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins in to town on March 25th at 7:05. The next day on Sunday the 26th, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers come in for a 5:05 contest. Next Friday on the 31st, Bridgeport again returns to Allentown. We’ll be breaking down those games next week, as we return to the silo.

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