Saturday's Morning Skate 12/19

Saturday, December 19, 2015
Phantoms haven't fared well against rival W-B/Scranton as of late. Photo: Nina Weiss.
Some teams in the Atlantic Division will be playing their final game before a week off for holidays tonight, including the Lehigh Valley Phantoms (in Binghamton) and the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguin (in Syracuse).

For the Phantoms, it's another chance to get over the .500 mark before the break and after a 4-8 start to the year things are slowly starting to come together for a team riddled by injuries this fall.

For the Penguins, it's a chance to bounce back after a colossal collapse at home last night. More on that after the jump.

I'll be live from Binghamton tonight with more exclusive road coverage of the Phantoms as they take on the Senators. Make sure you are following me on Twitter (@TonyAndrock_TCG) for all the latest in-game updates and check back here online after the game for a full recap of the action.

Would you like to see my coverage of the Lehigh Valley Phantoms while they're on the road continue? Please lend a helping hand to keep me providing live coverage of the team while they're on the road this season by making a generous donation to my GoFundMe page.

Atlantic Division Standings (through 12/4's games)

1. W-B/Scranton: 26 games played, 20-5-0-1 = 41 points (.788 PCT)
2. Hershey: 27 games played, 14-7-1-5 = 34 points (.630 PCT)
3. Bridgeport: 29 games played, 16-10-2-1 = 35 points (.603 PCT)
4. Portland: 24 games played, 12-11-1-0 = 25 points (.521 PCT)
5. Providence: 27 games played, 11-10-5-1 = 28 points (.519 PCT)
6. Lehigh Valley: 29 games played, 14-14-1-0 = 29 points (.500 PCT)
7. Springfield: 27 games played, 11-14-1-1 = 24 points (.444 PCT)
8. Hartford: 28 games played, 11-15-2-0 = 24 points (.429 PCT)

Around The Atlantic

Hershey - 4 at Lehigh Valley - 6

After taking a 1-0 lead early in the contest, the Lehigh Valley Phantoms surrendered three straight goals and trailed the Hershey Bears 3-1 with 8:06 left in the opening period.

Team captain Colin McDonald delivered a punishing hit on Bears' defenseman Ryan Stanton and the momentum swung the Phantoms way from there as they went on to tally five straight goals in a 6-4 win over their Atlantic Division rivals.

The Phantoms (14-14-1-0) had six different goal scorers and six players pitched in multi-point efforts, including a game-high three points from Nick Cousins (1G-2A). The 8,111 fans at the PPL Center were sent home satisfied, concluding the Phantoms' five-game home stand on a positive note and giving the team a chance, with a win tomorrow night in Binghamton, to head into the week long break for the holidays with a winning record on the season.

The Phantoms travel to Binghamton before their one-week break for the holidays, while Hershey returns home to host the Toronto Marlies.

Toronto - 4 at W-B/Scranton - 3 (SO)

The Penguins saw their already impressive shutout streak stretch into the third period Friday night, and with a 3-0 lead early in the final frame seemed to be in control on goals from Clark Seymour, Scott Wilson and Derrick Pouliot. Not so fast.

Not only did the Toronto Marlies end the Penguins' shutout streak at 225:02, but they rallied for three straight shorthanded goals in a span of 2:34 in the final frame to force overtime before eventually pulling off the colossal comeback in the shootout.

Mark Arcobello, Nikita Soshnikov and Richard Clune all tallied shorthanded goals for Toronto, who got 39 saves from Antoine Bibeau and three shootout stops to earn the two points.

Toronto continues their tour of Pennsylvania Saturday night in Hershey, while the Penguins head to Syracuse for a meeting with the Crunch.

Bridgeport - 2 at Providence - 3 (OT)

The Providence Bruins have seemingly rebounded from a slow start the season, extending their unbeaten streak to eight games (7-0-1) after a thrilling overtime win at home Friday night to a talented Bridgeport team.

The PBruins took a 2-0 lead in the second period on a pair of Austin Czarnik goals, but the Sound Tigers evened things at 2-2 early in the third period and forced overtime before Czarnik completed the hat trick in OT. Seth Griffith set up all three Providence goals, who got 28 saves on 30 shots from Malcolm Subban in the win.

Christopher Gibson stopped 35 of 38 for Bridgeport in the loss, who got their goals from James Wright and Taylor Beck to force overtime and get a point. Bridgeport heads home to host Portland Saturday, while Providence hits the road for Springfield.

Friday's Eastern Conference Scores

Utica - 7 at Springfield - 4
Binghamton - 0 at Syracuse - 4
Hartford - 1 at Rochester - 7

Saturday's Eastern Conference Schedule

Portland at Bridgeport, 7:00 p.m. ET
Toronto at Hershey, 7:00 p.m. ET
Providence at Springfield, 7:00 p.m. ET
W-B/Scranton at Syracuse, 7:00 p.m. ET
Hartford at Utica, 7:00 p.m. ET
Lehigh Valley at Binghamton, 7:05 p.m. ET
Albany at Rochester, 7:35 p.m. ET


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