Saturday's Morning Skate 11/8

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Nic Kerdiles tallied a goal last night in Norfolk's overtime win up in Syracuse.

There was plenty of action around the East Division on Friday night, with three of the four games decided by one goal and two finished in overtime.

Last night, I was in Syracuse taking in the Crunch vs. Norfolk Admirals game. The contest featured a little bit of everything - goals, fights, big hits, big saves and a highlight reel ending - and both teams showcased several talented young prospects.

There's always a Penguins connection regardless of whether or not I'm covering a Penguins game, and last night was no different. After the game, I ran into (thankfully not literally) former Penguins forward Steve MacIntyre - now on Norfolk - and had a nice chat with him catching up on how things have gone for him since leaving the organization two summers ago.

Tonight, I'll be live from Binghamton as the BSens host the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins at 7:05 p.m. ET. I'll have full coverage of tonight's BSens/Pens AHL action with in-game updates on Twitter (@H_P_Hockey) as well as a post-game recap here online shortly after the final horn sounds.

The Lehigh Valley Phantoms finish their weekend in Portland tonight against the Pirates at 7:00 p.m. ET. I'll have some Phantoms updates on Twitter (@TonyAndrock_TCG) as well.

East Division Standings (through 11/7's games)

1. Hershey (6-4-1-0) - 13 points
2. Penguins (6-5-1-0) - 13 points
3. Phantoms (5-4-1-0) - 11 points
4. Norfolk (5-6-0-0) - 10 points
5. Binghamton (4-6-2-0) - 10 points

Lehigh Valley - 3, Manchester - 2

In New Hampshire, Phantoms goaltender Rob Zepp held off siege after siege of Monarchs' shots - especially in the first and third periods - and the Phantoms used a three-goal offensive outburst in the middle frame to escape from Manchester Friday night with two points.

Zepp stopped 42 of 44 shots and was the difference tonight. He stood on his head to keep the game scoreless after the first frame when the Phantoms were out shot 15-5 and in the third when the Phantoms were out shot 16-4.

Andrew Gordon tallied two goals in a 4:12 span midway through the 2nd period - the first of which came on the power play - and added an assist on Taylor Leier's goal in the final two minutes of the period to extend the Phantoms lead to 3-1 heading to the third period and the Phantoms rode Zepp (5-1-1, 2.65 GAA, .918 SV%) to the finish line.

The Phantoms (5-4-1-0) finish the weekend with their straight road game tonight in Portland against the Pirates (6-5-0-0), while Manchester hosts Springfield.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton - 3, Hershey - 2 (OT)

Jayson Megna tipped a Taylor Chorney point shot with 47.1 seconds left in regulation, with the goaltender pulled, to tie the game and force overtime, then Megna won it 1:01 into the extra session after a great set up from teammates Beau Bennett and Derrick Pouliot. The overtime win for the Penguins ties them with Hershey for first place in the East Division.

Pens rookie netminder Matt Murray stopped 14 of the 16 shots that came his way and picked up his third win of the season, while Hershey's Philipp Grubauer (3-3-1) stopped 31 of 34 in the loss. Jon Landry and Casey Wellman tallied goals for the Bears in a losing effort.

Plenty of lineup changes for the Penguins, with Beau Bennett, Josh Archibald and the recently recalled Carter Rowney all making their WBS season debuts while Conor Sheary, Bobby Farnham and Pierre-Luc Leblond were all healthy scratches. Derrick Pouliot returned to the lineup on defense after missing the last two games with an upper body ailment.

The Penguins hit the road for Binghamton tonight at 7:05 p.m. ET against the Senators, while the Bears return home and host the Hartford Wolfpack at Giant Center.

Norfolk - 4, Syracuse - 3

A back-and-forth game up in Syracuse last night saw the visiting Norfolk Admirals come from behind with a game-tying shorthanded goal in the third period by Joseph Cramarossa before Cramarossa set up 19-year-old defenseman Shea Theodore with the game-winner in overtime. Nic Kerdiles and Chris Wagner also tallied goals for the Admirals in the win.

Theodore, Anaheim's 1st round pick (26th overall) in 2013, was re-assigned to Norfolk on a conditioning stint which Theodore said concluded with tonight's game when I caught up with him post-game. He will head back to the WHL and get ready for the Subway Series, but has a promising future ahead of him. Stay tuned for a closer look at Shea Theodore coming soon at Hockey's Future.

J.P. Cote, Jonathan Marchessault and Mike Angelidis tallied goals for the Crunch, while rookie goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 29 of the 33 shots he faced in a losing effort. The two teams rematch again tonight at The OnCenter at 7:05 p.m. ET.

Binghamton - 3, Rochester - 1

In Rochester, Mikhail Grigorenko gave the home team a 1-0 lead 11:36 into the first period, but the BSens rallied for three unanswered goals in the final two periods to pull away with the victory.

Carter Camper and Patrick Mullen added two assists each, as both set up rookies Ryan Dzingel and Alex Guptill to give the BSens a lead they would never look back on. Cole Schneider added the insurance marker with 6:23 left and goaltender Andrew Hammond picked up his third win of the year, stopping 24 of the 25 Americans' shots.

The Amerks host the red hot Utica Comets tonight at 7:05 p.m. ET, while the BSens return home to face their East Division rival - the Penguins.
Other Eastern Conference Scores

Springfield - 6, St. John's - 4
Portland - 4, Providence - 2

Saturday's Eastern Conference Schedule

Albany @ Bridgeport, 7:00 p.m. ET
Hartford @ Hershey, 7:00 p.m. ET
Springfield @ Manchester, 7:00 p.m. ET
Lehigh Valley @ Portland, 7:00 p.m. ET
Norfolk @ Syracuse, 7:00 p.m. ET
Providence @ Worcester, 7:00 p.m. ET
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton @ Binghamton, 7:05 p.m. ET


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