Game 72 Preview: Bridgeport at Lehigh Valley

Saturday, April 9, 2016
Anthony Stolarz looks to get back in net tonight for Lehigh Valley. Photo: Nina Weiss/The Home News
I'll have full coverage of tonight's Phantoms game against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. 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 (32-32-4-3) might be eliminated from postseason contention, but it hasn't stopped them from winning their last five games and looking to finish their final five contests on a positive note.

A wealth of incoming prospects has further bolstered the Phantoms' depth and they are also paying dividends. Oskar Lindblom has tallied two assists in the three games he has played, Reece Willcox tallied his first career pro goal in his 2nd AHL game last Saturday and both Travis Sanheim and Nicolas Aube-Kubel made their pro debuts last night in Wilkes-Barre.

Aube-Kubel picked up his first career point last night (an assist) as well and these prospects have given the team some newly found buzz in the final two weeks of the season despite their place in the standings.

Lehigh Valley faces a Bridgeport Sound Tigers team (38-26-4-3) that is currently clinging to the final playoff spot in the Atlantic Division and is coming off a 5-1 loss to Hershey last night. Last night in Wilkes-Barre, the Phantoms 4-0 shutout win prevented the Penguins from clinching their playoff spot. The Phantoms hope to continue to play the role of spoiler.

News, notes, stats, numbers and a whole bunch more after the jump.

By The Numbers

LV: 71 games played, 32-32-4-3 = 71 points
7th Place - Atlantic Division
Last 10 Games: 5-4-1-0
Streak: 5-0-0

BST: 71 games played, 38-26-4-3 = 83 points
5th Place - Atlantic Division
Last 10 Games: 6-3-1-0
Streak: 0-2-0

Special Teams

Power Play

LV: 17.2% - 13th in AHL
BST: 12.3% - 29th in AHL

Penalty Kill

LV: 83.6% - 15th in AHL
BST: 84.7% - 9th in AHL

Leading Scorers (Active)

LV: Chris Conner (54GP, 16G-36A), Taylor Leier (66GP, 19G-27A), Petr Straka (61GP, 19G-18A), Danick Martel (63GP, 21G-13A)

BST: Bracken Kearns (70GP, 22G-30A), Alan Quine (56GP, 19G-29A), Mike Halmo (69GP, 21G-18A), James Wright (68GP, 12G-26A)

Expected Starting Goaltenders

LV: Anthony Stolarz (19-15-7, 2.59 GAA, .916 SV%, 0 SO)
BST: Stephon Williams (13-12-1, 2.74 GAA, .900 SV%, 1 SO)

Season Series

This is the 5th of six scheduled meetings between Lehigh Valley and Bridgeport this season. The Phantoms are 1-2-0-1 against the Sound Tigers this season, with their lone win coming in Bridgeport back on January 17th. Last meeting between these two teams, the Phantoms overcame a 4-2 third period deficit before falling in the shootout.

Head to Head Scoring Leaders

LV:  Chris Conner (3GP, 1G-4A), Danick Martel (3GP, 4G-0A), Taylor Leier (4GP, 3G-1A)

BST: Kane Lafranchise (2GP, 0G-2A), Bracken Kearns (4GP, 3G-1A), Mike Halmo (4GP, 1G-3A)

Goalies Head to Head Stats

LV: Anthony Stolarz - (2GP, 0-1-1, 2.90 GAA, .898 SV%, 0 SO)
      Martin Ouellette - No Stats

BST: Stephon Williams - No Stats
         Parker Milner (1GP, 0-1-0, 4.01 GAA, .857 SV%, 0 SO)

Season Series Schedule

Sat. 12/26, Bridgeport - 2 at Lehigh Valley - 1
Sun. 1/17, Lehigh Valley - 4 at Bridgeport - 1
Fri. 2/5, Lehigh Valley - 3 at Bridgeport - 6
Sat. 2/20, Bridgeport - 5 at Lehigh Valley - 4 (SO)
Sat. 4/9, Bridgeport at Lehigh Valley - 7:05 p.m. ET
Sun. 4/10, Lehigh Valley at Bridgeport - 5:00 p.m. ET

Lehigh Valley Phantoms 

Roster Notes

Goaltender Alex Lyon, whom the Flyers signed this week out of Yale University to an entry-level contract, will not be reporting to Lehigh Valley this spring per GM Ron Hextall.

Veteran Jason LaBarbera has been ruled out for the season. It appeared as though the Phantoms would finish their final six games with Martin Ouellette and Connor Knapp, but the Flyers reassigned Anthony Stolarz to Lehigh Valley Thursday afternoon. Saturday morning, Ouellette was reassigned to Reading (ECHL).

Defenseman Travis Sanheim and forward Nicolas Aube-Kubel will make their pro debuts Friday night in Wilkes-Barre against the rival Penguins.

Forwards Radel Fazleev (hand) and Travis Konecny (shoulder), both of whom have been eliminated from the junior league playoffs, will not play with the Phantoms this spring due their injuries.

Forward Jay Rosehill received a three-game suspension for his illegal check to the head of St. John's IceCap defenseman Josiah Didier during last Saturday night's game. Rosehill will miss all three games this weekend.

Also receiving a suspension from the weekend games in St. John's is Aaron Palushaj, who received a one-game suspension for his awkward hit on Charles Hudon. Palushaj served his one-game suspension in Friday's game vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.

Michael Parks has been skating in a yellow non-contact jersey at practice for the past two weeks. I had ruled him out for the season after a conversation I had with Parks about six weeks ago, but it's nice to see him skating out there. He's been out of the lineup since the Phantoms' third game of the season back on October 17th in Wilkes-Barre.

Scratches: Jason LaBarbera (out for the season), Travis Sanheim (healthy), Christian Marti (healthy), Phil DeSimone (healthy), Tyrell Goulbourne (healthy), Michael Parks (out for the season), Aaron Palushaj (healthy), Radel Fazleev (out for the season), Jay Rosehill (suspended - two more games) & Logan Pyett (out for the season)

Lines (Starters in Bold/Italics)

Chris Conner - Tim Brent - Oskar Lindblom
Taylor Leier - Cole Bardreau - Colin McDonald
Petr Straka - Steven Swavely - Nicolas Aube-Kubel
Dalton Smith - Pavel Padakin - Danick Martel

Sam Morin - Mark Alt
Davis Drewiske - Reece Willcox
Adam Comrie - Robert Hagg

Anthony Stolarz - Connor Knapp

Recent Transactions

4/9: DEL - G Martin Ouellette loaned to Reading (ECHL)

4/7: ADD - G Anthony Stolarz returned on loan by Philadelphia (NHL)
4/4: ADD - RW Nicolas Aube-Kubel re-assigned by Philadelphia (NHL) from Val d'Or (QMJHL)
4/4: ADD - LW Radel Fazleev re-assigned by Philadelphia (NHL) from Calgary (WHL)
4/4: ADD - D Travis Sanheim re-assigned by Philadelphia (NHL) from Calgary (WHL)
3/29: DEL - D Max Lamarche re-assigned by Philadelphia (NHL) to Reading (ECHL)
3/26: ADD - F Oskar Lindblom signed to ATO

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


Post a Comment