Game 63 Preview: Lehigh Valley at Rochester

Wednesday, March 16, 2016
Fairport, NY native Cole Bardreau returning home tonight when Phantoms face Rochester. Photo: Nina Weiss/The Home News
I'll have full coverage of tonight's Phantoms game against the Rochester Americans. The puck drops at 7:05 p.m. ET, but make sure you're following me on Twitter -> @TonyAndrock and now on Facebook (be sure to like the Facebook page!) for all the latest updates and information this evening. Stay tuned here online after the game for a recap of the action.

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

The Lehigh Valley Phantoms (27-29-3-3) are running out of time to make a push towards the postseason, entering tonight's game seven points behind the Portland Pirates for the final playoff position with 14 games left on the Phantoms' schedule. Portland, who visits the PPL Center on Sunday, also has two games in hand on Lehigh Valley entering tonight's games.

Tonight's opponent, the Rochester Americans (30-27-2-1), is in a similar position in the North Division - trailing Portland by four points for the final playoff spot. The Amerks have won seven of their last 10 games and are heading in the right direction toward making their last ditch effort to qualify for the postseason.

For views and coverage from the opponent, make sure you are following Kevin Oklobzija - the Rochester Americans beat writer for the Democrat an Chronicle - on Twitter (@kevinoDandC). He had this story today on Phantoms' rookie Cole Bardreau returning home to play hockey in Rochester for the first time since high school.

All of the regular news, notes, stats and more to get you ready for tonight's game in a full preview after the jump.

By The Numbers

LV: 62 games played, 27-29-3-3 = 60 points
7th Place - Atlantic Division
Last 10 Games: 3-4-1-2
Streak: 0-3-1-0

RCH: 60 games played, 30-27-2-1 = 63 points
4th Place - North Division
Last 10 Games: 7-3-0-0
Streak: 0-1-0

Special Teams

Power Play

LV: 17.4% - 12th in AHL
RCH: 16.9% - 16th in AHL

Penalty Kill

LV: 82.3% - 18th in AHL
RCH: 79.8% - 25th in AHL

Leading Scorers (Active)

LV:  Chris Conner (45GP, 13G-30A), Taylor Leier (57GP,18G-24A), Petr Straka (52GP, 18G-17A), Danick Martel (54GP, 21G-12A)

RCH: Cole Schneider (59GP, 18G-30A), Eric O'Dell (55GP, 22G-20A), Justin Bailey (54GP, 12G-19A), William Carrier (52GP, 13G-16A)

Expected Starting Goaltenders

LV: Anthony Stolarz (19-14-6, 2.57 GAA, .917 SV%, 0 SO)
RCH: Linus Ullmark (9-8-0, 3.03 GAA, .903 SV%, 0 SO)

Season Series

This is the second and final meeting between the Phantoms and Americans. Back on Friday the 13th in November, Lehigh Valley dominated Rochester in a 7-1 blowout. The two teams were much different then than they are now, as over four months has passed since the previous meeting.

Head to Head Scoring Leaders

LV: Danick Martel (1GP, 2G-1A), Petr Straka (1GP, 1G-1A), Chris Conner (1GP, 1G-1A)

RCH: Colby Robak (1GP, 1G-0A), Nick Baptiste (1GP, 0G-1A), Matt Donovan (1GP, 0G-1A)

Goalies Head to Head Stats

LV: Anthony Stolarz - (1GP, 1-0-0, 1.00 GAA, .971 SV%, 0 SO)
       Jason LaBarbera - No Stats
RCH: Linus Ullmark - No Stats
          Nathan Lieuwen - (1GP, 0-1-0, 7.00 GAA, ,800 SV%, 0 SO)
Season Series Schedule

Wednesday 3/16, Lehigh Valley at Hartford - 7:05 p.m. ET

Lehigh Valley Phantoms

Roster Notes

Anthony Stolarz is back from his short stint as a backup in Philadelphia and should get the start in net tonight for Lehigh Valley. Martin Ouellette has been returned to Reading, and Jason LaBarbera will be the backup tonight.

Max Lamarche left the Phantoms' most recent game - Saturday in Hartford - early in the second period after still feeling ill effects of a check to the head he took from Wolf Pack defenseman Brady Skjei. Lamarche didn't practice yesterday and while yesterday's AHL transactions had Jespser Pettersson listed as called up to Lehigh Valley, the league has since removed the transaction.

Regardless, the Phantoms still have six other healthy defensemen on the roster ready to go if Lamarche isn't 100%.

Reading Pa native Steven Swavely made his pro debut Saturday in Hartford and did not look out of place centering the fourth line - getting ample time on the penalty kill and winning a majority of his face-offs.

Scratches from Saturday: Christian Marti (healthy), Michael Parks (upper body since 10/17), Jay Rosehill (healthy), Joe Rehkamp (healthy) and Logan Pyett (out indefinitely).

Lines From Saturday's Game:

Petr Straka - Cole Bardreau - Colin McDonald (C)
Taylor Leier - Phil DeSimone - Chris Conner
Danick Martel - Tim Brent (A) - Aaron Palushaj
Tyrell Goulbourne - Steven Swavely - Dalton Smith

Davis Drewiske (A) - Christian Marti
Sam Morin - Mark Alt
Adam Comrie - Robert Hagg

Jason LaBarbera - Martin Ouellette

Recent Transactions - Phantoms

3/13: ADD - G Anthony Stolarz returned on loan from Philadelphia (NHL)
3/12: DEL - G Martin Ouellette loaned to Reading (ECHL)
3/12: ADD - G Martin Ouellette recalled from loan to Reading (ECHL)
3/12: DEL - G Anthony Stolarz recalled from loan by Philadelphia (NHL)
3/10: DEL - C Kevin Goumas loaned to Reading (ECHL)
3/10: DEL - LW Kevin Sundher loaned to Reading (ECHL)
3/8: ADD - C Steven Swavely added on an ATO


Post a Comment