Game 69 Preview: Charlotte @ WBS Penguins

Sunday, March 20, 2011
With Joe Vitale out of the lineup, Ryan Craig has been bumped up to top line duty while Zach Sill is in the middle of the Keven Veilleux/Geoff Walker tandem that has been deadly as of late.

Back In The Saddle Again
The WBS Penguins are back at it this afternoon with a 3 p.m. EST faceoff against the Charlotte Checkers, the AHL affiliate of the Carolina Hurricanes. Having already clinched a playoff spot with last night's win, the Pens look to put a stranglehold on the East Division with another solid effort today.

The Basics
Charlotte Checkers, 38-24-2-6, 84 points, T-3rd East Division
WBS Penguins, 49-18-0-1, 99 points, 1st place East Division

Season series: WBS leads series 5-1
Previous ten games - CHA: 5-4-0-1  WBS: 7-2-0-1

Players to Watch
Charlotte: The Checkers have many offensively talented forwards that can put the puck in the net. Chris Terry lead the Checkers in scoring with 27G, 27A, Jacob Micflikier has 23G, 27A and Zac Dalpe also looking for 20 goals this season with 19G, 27A.

Penguins: Keven Veilleux has been playing great hockey in March with six assists in eight games in the month of March. Zach Sill has been centering the Veilleux-Walker line since the Vitale hit in Winnipeg and scored a nice goal last night. Sill is the only WBS Penguin left who has dressed for every game this season, and his hard work is paying off offensively now too.

Final Thoughts
Expect the same lineup this afternoon with Joe Vitale, Carl Sneep, Joey Mormina and John Curry out of the lineup. Brad Thiessen should get the start in goal with Patrick Killeen backing him up. Defensively I like Alex Grant over Jason DeSantis, and both David Marshall and Nick Petersen should dress tonight with Vitale out and only 12 healthy forwards on the roster.

Game thread at 2:30 p.m. EST. Puck drops at 3:05. Follow this blog on Facebook, or follow me on Twitter for more up to the minute Penguins hockey updates.

The Pens magic number to clinch the division is ten. Ten points in the last 11 games and the WBS Penguins wrap up the division title. Of course, if Hershey fails to get the two points in any of their remaining nine games the magic number will  be dwindled, as well as with each Penguins victory the rest of the way. Hopefully the guys can get win number 50 this afternoon.


Post a Comment