Shocker in St. John's - Phantoms Win 5-4 in OT

Tuesday, March 21, 2017
Photo courtesy Scott Walsh (@scottwalsh_)
Five unanswered goals leads Lehigh Valley past St. John's

Written by: Tony Androckitis - Twitter/Facebook

The Lehigh Valley Phantoms (41-19-4) pulled off the unthinkable Tuesday night in Newfoundland, Canada at the Mile One Centre in St. John's - the eastern most point on the North American continent.

Down 4-0 to the St. John's IceCaps (31-25-8-1) late in the second period, Travis Sanheim nudged a puck from the left-wing to the inside of the left-wing face-off circle to Cole Bardreau for a quick shot past IceCaps goaltender Charlie Lindgren with 1:00 left before the second intermission.

Not only did Bardreau's 9th of the season break snap the shutout, but it gave the Phantoms life heading into the final frame. Though it wasn't known at the time in a 4-1 game, Bardreau's goal proved to be the turning point.

The Phantoms went on to tally five unanswered goals - scoring three in the third period and one in overtime to complete the comeback and defeat the IceCaps 5-4.

Max Lamarche took a pass from Sanheim at the right point and his attempted shot on net deflected off of an IceCaps forward and blooped in with 12:15 left in regulation to make it a 4-2 game.
Just over four minutes later, Nicolas Aube-Kubel made it a one-goal game - deflecting Sam Morin's point shot in past Lindgren with 8:06 left in regulation.

The Phantoms forced overtime on a game-tying goal from T.J. Brennan one-timer from the right point with 1:44 left to play - the defenseman's 19th of the season. Brennan, who began his QMJHL career with the St. John's Fog Devils in 2006, wasn't finished there either.

After IceCaps' leading scorer Chris Terry took a frustration penalty in the final minute of regulation on a hit away from the play on Taylor Leier at the team benches, Lehigh Valley began overtime with a 4-on-3 power play - their 4th of the night.

It didn't take long - just 34 seconds into the extra session - for the Phantoms' power play to cash in and complete the comeback in thrilling fashion. It was Brennan again lighting the lamp, taking a pass at the left-wing circle from Andy Miele and firing one home to give the Phantoms two points heading into tomorrow night's rematch against St. John's.
Phantoms' Playoff Update - The Phantoms' come from behind overtime win in St. John's provides an important two points in the standings, extending their lead over idle third place Hershey to three points with also one game in hand on the Bears. The only other Atlantic Division team in action Tuesday night was the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, who took care of Hartford 5-2 and maintain their three-point lead over the Phantoms for first place in the division.

The Lehigh Valley Phantoms' magic number to clinch a berth in the 2017 Calder Cup Playoffs is currently at 18 points. You can also keep track of the playoff races in the AHL's daily Playoff Primer.


Anthony Stolarz (29 saves - 33 shots), coming off an impressive performance in Wilkes-Barre last Saturday, got to slot back between the pipes for Lehigh Valley Tuesday night in St. John's. Both goaltenders are expected to get a start in St. John's with games in back-to-back nights, so expect Alex Lyon to backstop the Phantoms Wednesday night.

The Philadelphia Flyers signed their 2014-3rd round draft pick, defenseman Mark Friedman, to an entry level contract beginning in the 2017-18 season. The former Bowling Green State Univeristy product, who tallied 26 points (eight goals, 18 assists) in 40 games this season in the WCHA, will join the Phantoms this weekend on a tryout contract for the remainder of the season.

Taylor Leier returned to the lineup Saturday in Wilkes-Barre after missing the previous 19 games with lingering symptoms of a concussion he suffered back in late January.

The latest casualty to the injury bug is Chris Conner, who did not travel with the team and missed last Saturday's game with an injury per head coach Scott Gordon. As per usual, no further details were provided on Conner's status moving forward.

Defenseman Will O'Neill left early in the 1st period of Saturday's 4-1 win against Utica after an apparent upper body injury he sustained jamming his left hand/wrist after a fall into the boards.

Robert Hagg and Steven Swavely are also nearing returns to the lineup as both were skating at practice this week in red, no-contact jerseys. Hagg's injury was not as serious as initially feared, which is good news for the Phantoms with O'Neill out with an injury currently.

Boyd Gordon, who left in a Wednesday home game against Binghamton after a sliding BSens' forward crunched into his legs in the corner boards, was initially expected to miss a few weeks with a knee injury. He was seen at Friday night's game in Allentown walking with a knee brace over his suit pants.

Scratches: Robert Hagg (lower body), Mark Zengerle (healthy), Will O'Neill (upper body), Steven Swavely (upper body), Chris Conner (undisclosed), Boyd Gordon (lower body), Jesper Pettersson (healthy) and Mark Friedman (signed with Flyers Tuesday, will report to Lehigh Valley)

Lines (Starters in Bold/Italics)

Taylor Leier (A) - Scott Laughton - Colin McDonald
Greg Carey - Andy Miele - Cole Bardreau
Danick Martel - Corban Knight - Nicolas Aube-Kubel
Tyrell Goulbourne - Radel Fazleev - Chris McCarthy

T.J. Brennan - Reece Willcox
Sam Morin - Mark Alt
Travis Sanheim - Max Lamarche

Anthony Stolarz - Alex Lyon


1st Period

4:02: LV - (PP) bench minor, too many men (served by Martel)
7:06: STJ - MacMillan (6) -Farnham, Friberg
7:27: STJ - Gregoire (8) - Johnston, MacMillan

2nd Period

2:30: STJ - (PP) Johnston, minor (tripping)
2:40: STJ - SHG de la Rose (10) - Hanley
3:00: LV - Sanheim, minor (cross-checking)
3:00: STJ - Farnham, minor (unsportsmanlike)
10:35: STJ - Audette (8) - Friberg, Carr
19:00: LV - Bardreau (9) - Sanheim

3rd Period

3:53: STJ - (PP) Lowe, minor (tripping)
4:43: LV - (PP) Leier, minor (holding)
7:45: LV - Lamarche (4) - Sanheim, Miele
9:02: STJ - (PP) Veilleux, minor (slashing)
11:54: LV - Aube-Kubel (9) - Morin, Alt
12:10: LV - (PP) Goulbourne, minor (tripping)
18:16: LV - Brennan (19) - Lamarche, Leier
19:06: STJ - (PP) Terry, minor (interference)


0:34: LV - PPG Brennan (20) - Miele, Carey


Lehigh Valley  0 - 1 - 3 - 1 = 5 
St. John's         2 - 2 - 0 - 0 = 4


Lehigh Valley  8 - 14 - 15 - 1 = 38
St. John's         10 - 12 - 11 - 0 = 33


LV - Anthony Stolarz (29 saves - 33 shots)
STJ - Charlie Lindgren (33 saves - 38 shots)

Power Play

LV: 1-for-4
STJ: 0-for-3

Penalty Kill

LV: 3-for-3
STJ: 3-for-4

Attendance: 3,394


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