Syracuse Shooting Gallery 12/7

Wednesday, December 7, 2016
Syracuse Crunch goaltender Adam Wilcox had a career night against Lehigh Valley. Photo: Nina Weiss/Highland Park Hockey
Phantoms manage 50 shots on net in loss to Syracuse

Written by: Tony Androckitis, Twitter/Facebook

It was not for lack of effort or control of tonight's game that the Lehigh Valley Phantoms came away from Syracuse Wednesday night with no points in the standings. They simply ran into a hot goaltender.

The Phantoms fired a season-high 50 shots on net but Syracuse Crunch goaltender Adam Wilcox stood on his head - stopping 48 of those 50 shots and really kept his team afloat throughout the contest despite being largely out-played.

Lehigh Valley took a 1-0 lead midway through the first, but two goals 21 seconds apart by Syracuse had the home team in front and the Phantoms playing catch up for most of the night.

Cole Bardreau tallied his second goal of the night midway through the third to even the score at 2-2 but a late goal by Matt Taormina with 2:25 left and a shorthanded/empty net tally in the final seconds preserved the win for the Crunch, who maintain their lead in the North Division with the 4-2 win.

Quick recap of events after the jump.

Game 23 Preview: Lehigh Valley at Syracuse

Photo: Nina Weiss/Highland Park Hockey
Phantoms take on Syracuse at 7:00 p.m. ET

Written by: Tony Androckitis, Twitter/Facebook

I'll have full coverage of tonight's Phantoms game against the Syracuse Crunch. The puck drops at 7:00 p.m. ET, but make sure you're following along on Twitter -> @TonyAndrock & Facebook (be sure to like the Facebook page!) for all the latest updates and information.

Stay tuned here online after the game for a recap of the action. Don't forget to subscribe to Highland Park Hockey's YouTube channel for post-game interviews with AHL hockey players.

The Lehigh Valley Phantoms (15-6-1) continue on their tough schedule with another road game against another top team when they take on the current first place team in the North Division - the Syracuse Crunch (12-6-2) - at the OnCenter War Memorial Arena.

Some light at the end of the tunnel as the Phantoms will enter a season high six-game homestand this weekend leading into the holidays, but a tough mid-week matchup with a tough Syracuse must not be taken lightly.

After the jump, a preview full of the latest news and notes to get you ready for tonight's game.

You can help keep me on the road covering the Lehigh Valley Phantoms this season by making a donation via GoFundMe or PayPal.

What is Laughton's future with the Flyers?

Tuesday, December 6, 2016
Photo: Nina Weiss/Highland Park Hockey
Laughton returns to Lehigh Valley

Written by: Tony Androckitis - Twitter/Facebook

ALLENTOWN - Scott Laughton was back at the PPL Center Tuesday practicing with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms one day after being reassigned by the Philadelphia Flyers to their AHL affiliate.

While the move could be telling in how Flyers' management currently stands on the former 1st round pick, the exact reason for his demotion had differing viewpoints after Tuesday's practice.

"He really isn't coming down because of his performance, it's, I think, more of a positional thing," Phantoms' head coach Scott Gordon said. "They want Scott to be a center. Given the fact that Matt Read is winger, they want to have somebody go in his place and focus having Scott as a center."

Is Laughton's demotion and Taylor Leier's promotion based off of a positional need up top? It depends on who you ask.

"I played left wing last year, and at the end of the summer they told me I was going to start the year on left wing. So I'm not really sure," Laughton said when asked if his latest demotion was due to a positional need. "That's a better question for Hak or Hexy, but I'm not sure."

One thing is for sure. And that is that while Laughton is in the AHL he's going to play, and play a lot.

"It's nice to have fun again. Get out there and play, and play in all situations," Laughton said. "Be a guy that's counted on. So I'm excited for that."

"I'm just going to keep my nose down and play as hard as I can," Laughton continued, adding, "Worry about what I can do to become an NHL player again, and show that I belong there."

Philadelphia Flyers Prospect Report - November 2016

Monday, December 5, 2016
Flyers 2016-2nd round draft pick Carter Hart is playing lights out for WHL's Everett Silvertips this season. Photo: Nina Weiss/Highland Park Hockey.
Written by: Tim Riday - Twitter

When Ron Hextall returned to Philadelphia and accepted the title of Flyers general manager, he knew he had a lot of work to do. The major problem? A lack of depth in pretty much every department.

Hextall made a conscious effort to build the organization up via the draft. Gone are the days of trading picks for aging veterans. They’re considered precious cargo in Hextall’s administration.

One area that is suddenly stealing the spotlight is goaltending. Hextall has stockpiled netminders over the past few offseasons and the excitement levels surrounding those prospects is starting to skyrocket. 

Even Anthony Stolarz - who was drafted under former GM Paul Holmgren - turned some heads in his NHL debut after receiving a call up to the big club (hence, why he won’t be featured in this update). 

Fans, for the first time in what seems like forever, can take solace about the future in net. With good reason, too.

What better way to begin November’s Prospect Report than with a look at arguably the top goaltender to come out of the 2016 NHL Draft? Here we go!

Updates on all Flyers prospects throughout the organization after the jump!

Hershey Hangs on for 4-3 Win Over Phantoms

Friday, December 2, 2016
Photo: Nina Weiss/Highland Park Hockey
Phantoms third period push comes up short

Written by: Tony Androckitis, Twitter/Facebook

ALLENTOWN - The Lehigh Valley Phantoms (13-6-1) appeared to be dead in the water down 4-1 in the opening minute of the third period, but a late third period surge had the Phantoms one shot away from sending the game into overtime in the final 9.9 seconds of regulation.

"We had a good push at the end," head coach Scott Gordon said following the game. "We had the guy we wanted to shoot the puck with seven seconds left and when it's all said and done we didn't get two points, but I liked the way they battled in the third period."

The Phantoms battled back from the three goal deficit, getting goals from Jordan Weal and Robert Hagg in the final frame to make it a one-goal game in the final minutes of play. Unfortunately for Lehigh Valley, it was too little too late as the Bears hung on for the win.

These two teams will rematch Saturday night at the Giant Center in Hershey.

After the jump, a full recap of the action complete with exclusive player reaction from Robert Hagg and head coach Scott Gordon, and a post-game video interview with Jordan Weal.