Game 50 Preview: Hartford at Lehigh Valley

Friday, February 17, 2017
Photo: Nina Weiss/Highland Park Hockey
Phantoms Host Hartford To Begin Three-Game Weekend

Editor's Note: I'll have full coverage of tonight's Phantoms game against the Hartford WolfPack live from the PPL Center! The puck drops at 7:05 p.m. ET, but make sure you're following along on Twitter -> @TonyAndrock and Facebook (be sure to like the Facebook page!) for all the latest updates and information.

Stay tuned here online after the game for a recap of the action. Don't forget to subscribe to Highland Park Hockey's YouTube channel for post-game interviews with AHL hockey players.

ALLENTOWN - The Lehigh Valley Phantoms look to avoid a season-high three game losing streak when they host the Hartford Wolf Pack Friday night at the PPL Center to kick off a three-game weekend.

Injuries, call ups and now a suspension have the Phantoms' depth being tested but they should receive some help in the way of Scott Laughton who is expected to return to the Phantoms' lineup this weekend.

After the jump, a full preview of everything you need to know in advance of tonight's game.

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Written by: Tony Androckitis, Twitter/Facebook

By The Numbers

LV: 49 games played, 32-15-2-0 = 66 points
2nd Place Atlantic Division
Streak: 0-2-0-0
Last Ten Games: 6-4-0-0

HFD: 49 games played, 18-26-3-2 = 75 points
7th Place Atlantic  Division
Streak: 0-1-0-0
Last Ten Games: 4-5-0-1

Special Teams

Power Play

LV - 53-for-238: 22.3% = 5th in AHL
HFD - 35-for-177:19.8% = 9th in AHL

Penalty Kill

LV - 159-for-192: 82.8% = 11th in AHL
HFD - 157-for-200: 78.5% = 26th in AHL

Leading Scorers

LV:  Chris Conner (49GP, 15G-24A), T.J. Brennan (49GP, 13G-25A) and Greg Carey (49GP, 22G-13A) and Andy Miele (38GP, 5G-29A)

HFD: Nicklas Jensen (43GP, 21G-15A), Adam Tambellini (35GP, 11G-17A), Mat Bodie (39GP, 8G-20A) and Justin Fontaine (44GP, 7G-19A)

Starting Goaltenders

LV: Alex Lyon (31GP, 20-9-2, 2.63 GAA, .911 SV%, 3 SO)
HFD: Brandon Halverson (17GP, 7-9-0, 3.28 GAA, .888 SV%, 0 SO)

Season Series

This is the sixth of eight meetings between the Phantoms and Wolf Pack this season. The Phantoms are 2-2-1 against Hartford. The Wolf Pack might be last in the Atlantic Division, but they've won the previous two meetings in the season series - holding the high-powered Phantoms' attack to just one goal in each of those match ups.

Season Series Schedule

Saturday, October 22nd: Hartford - 5 at Lehigh Valley - 4 (OT)
Friday, October 28th: Lehigh Valley - 5 at Hartford - 1
Wednesday, November 2nd: Lehigh Valley - 4 at Hartford - 0
Saturday, November 26th: Hartford -3 at Lehigh Valley - 1
Friday, January 6th: Lehigh Valley -1 at Hartford - 2
Friday, February 17th: Hartford at Lehigh Valley - 7:05 p.m. ET
Saturday, February 18th: Hartford at Lehigh Valley - 7:05 p.m. ET
Saturday, March 4th: Lehigh Valley at Hartford - 3:00 p.m. ET

Lehigh Valley Phantoms

Roster Notes

Alex Lyon is expected to get the start in net tonight against Hartford. Anthony Stolarz surrendered five goals in Wilkes-Barre on Tuesday night, but should be back in net Saturday in a rematch against the WolfPack.

Scott Laughton is expected to return to the Phantoms' lineup this weekend, which should help the team's depth down the middle.

Sam Morin will miss his first Phantoms' game tonight, serving the first of a two-game suspension for a cross-checking hit in Tuesday's loss to the Penguins. Morin had appeared in 125 straight games for the Phantoms up to this point, not missing a single game in his pro career to date.

Taylor Leier will miss his seventh straight game with an undisclosed injury he re-aggravated before the team's first game back from the All-Star break in Albany two weeks ago. He was seen getting on the ice after Phantoms' practice Monday, skating with other injured forwards Scott Laughton and Boyd Gordon, but doesn't appear to be close to a return at this point.

Boyd Gordon, who left in the Wednesday home game against Binghamton after a sliding BSens' forward crunched into his legs in the corner boards, is expected to miss a few weeks with a knee injury.

Scratches: Sam Morin (suspension - 1st of two games), Chris McCarthy (healthy), Taylor Leier (undisclosed injury) and Boyd Gordon (lower body)

Lines (Starters in Bold/Italics)

Mark Zengerle - Scott Laughton - Colin McDonald
Danick Martel - Corban Knight - Nicolas Aube-Kubel
Greg Carey - Andy Miele - Chris Conner
Steven Swavely - Cole Bardreau - Radel Fazleev

T.J. Brennan - Reece Willcox
Will O'Neill - Mark Alt
Robert Hagg - Travis Sanheim

Alex Lyon - Anthony Stolarz

Recent Transactions

2/13: ADD - D Reece Willcox reassigned by Philadelphia (NHL) from Reading (ECHL)
2/12: DEL - D Reece Willcox reassigned by Philadelphia (NHL) to Reading (ECHL)
2/11: ADD - F Steven Swavely recalled from loan to Reading (ECHL)
2/10: ADD - F Chris McCarthy recalled from loan to Reading (ECHL)
2/10: DEL - F Jordan Weal recalled from loan by Philadelphia (NHL)


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