Phantoms Find Scoring Touch Against Senators To End Skid

Wednesday, November 11, 2015
Phantoms and Senators on a Wednesday night in Binghamton.
Entering tonight's game with a three-game losing streak and falling behind 2-0 in the first 4:27 of the contest looked like it would be a long night for the Lehigh Valley Phantoms against the Binghamton Senators. Two quick goals less than a minute apart by Tim Brent and Shayne Gostisbehere and a late first period tally by Tyrell Goulbourne turned the tides for the Phantoms and jump-started a big 6-3 win to end the losing the skid.

In all, six different players scored for the Phantoms - Brent, Gostisbehere, Goulbourne, Nick Cousins, Kevin Goumas and Petr Straka - in a total team effort. Arguably, the most important goal came with 1.5 seconds left in the 2nd period as a great hustle play by Goulbourne set up Goumas' goal to give the Phantoms a 5-3 lead heading to the third period - a lead they wouldn't surrender.

The win gives plenty confidence moving forward with two home games this weekend against Rochester on Friday night and Albany on Saturday.

More after the jump, including a full recap of the action and thoughts from head coach Scott Gordon, Nick Cousins, Kevin Goumas and Tyrell Goulbourne.


Scott Gordon on getting back in the win column:
It was nice to score some goals. We got a ton of chances Sunday but didn't score. Tonight, obviously we we're unable to put the puck in the back of the net. You lose three games, you go down 2-0 in the first [four minutes]. We were down 2-0 and it's not a good feeling, and then we came right back and got the two. To get the third was huge. That goal at the end of the [second] period was another big one. It was good for them to get rewarded with some goals and a win.
Gordon on Goulbourne:
He's a strong kid, obviously brings an element of toughness, but he can make plays. We are happy with the way he's playing. He's getting better and he's going to be an important part of our team.
Gordon on six different goal scorers:
I think anytime you can balance your attack it makes it hard for the opposition to play against you. It was good to see that everybody factored into the scoring.
Nick Cousins on getting back in the lineup and helping team to a win:
It's nice to get back. Even being around the boys and being around the room. It's not the same when you're hurt, so I was really excited to get back in the lineup. Obviously to get on the board there helps too. We got two games coming up at home so we have to take advantage of that.
Cousins on six different scorers:
Absolutely. I can't even remember the last time we scored six goals. It's good for everyone's confidence. It's only going to help our team, I think that's when we are at our best. It was a good win for us.
Cousins on everything coming together tonight:
Yeah it's nice. I think we were on a 3-game losing skid there so it was nice to get off that. We gained some confidence going into this weekend. It was a huge win for us, everyone did their part. Big two points for us and we're not done yet.
Kevin Goumas on the goal at end of 2nd period:
We were in the defensive zone and Alt chipped it out. Their defense kind of stopped playing it almost looked like and Rankin got in on the fore-check and made a good play. Him and Tyrell. I was calling for it and Rankin hit me in the high slot there.
Goumas on scoring that crucial goal:
It's a big goal. Any time you can get a late goal like that with one second left going into the 3rd period it's huge. Two-goal lead is the hardest in all of hockey but we were able to hold that lead and get another in the end to satisfy the win.
Tyrell Goulbourne on the play at end of 2nd period:
As soon as I saw him chip out, I got on my horse after it. I saw the d-man kind of lackadaisical going back and I don't think he saw me coming on him. I managed to create a turnover and Rankin made a nice play to get it to Goumas and he put it in the net.
Goulbourne on his go-ahead goal in the 1st period:
I think Sundher made a great play to get and get it over to me. Thank god he heard me when I was calling for it. I've felt more comfortable out here since the beginning of the season which has helped me a lot.

The first five and a half minutes were action-packed. The BSens took a quick 2-0 lead on a pair of goals 38 seconds apart. Fredrik Claesson's point shot got re-directed past Stolarz by Cole Schneider at 3:49 of the 1st period. On the next shift, Colin Greening sneaked a wrap-around past Stolarz to make it a 2-0 lead at the 4:27 mark.

Before the fans at the Floyd L Maines Veterans Memorial Arena could even hear the scoring of the BSens' second goal, Tim Brent fired one in from the slot just 15 seconds later to get Lehigh Valley on the board at 4:42 of the opening period. Taylor Leier and Andrew MacDonald added assists on the play.

A Mark Fraser cross-checking minor at 5:08 gave the Phantoms a power play that they would use to tie the game. Brent got the puck back to the point to Shayne Gostisbehere for a blast past Chris Driedger to even the score at 2-2. Chris Conner picked up a secondary assist on the power play goal at 5:30.

The two teams settled in from there and continued to exchange chances, but the two goaltenders were up to the task. It wasn't until there was 3:48 left in the opening period that a neutral zone turnover led to the Phantoms taking the lead. Kevin Sundher lifted the stick of a BSens' defender and dished it to Tyrell Goulbourne at the left wing for a quick wrist shot that beat Driedger and gave the Phantoms a 3-2 lead heading into the first intermission.

The Phantoms made it four in a row and a 4-2 lead after Chris Conner forced a turnover behind the BSens' net and fed one in front to Nick Cousins all alone atop Dreidger's crease. Cousins changed from his backhand to forehand and lifted one past the BSens' goaltender to increase the Phantoms' lead to two just 3:27 into the middle frame.

The BSens answered on the next shift, making it a 4-3 game after Max McCormick took a pass and skated with it atop the left wing circle before sniping one off the crossbar and in on Stolarz at the 4:08 mark.

An elbowing penalty to BSens physical defender Guillaume Lepine gave the Phantoms a chance to extend their lead back to two goals, but instead it was a bit of a circus. The BSens had two separate 2-on-1 shorthanded rushes, with the first of those two resulting in a Danny Hobbs wrister off the inside of Stolarz's right post.

The pace of play tonight was incredible, especially in the 2nd period. The teams were racing up the ice and firing shots from all over the ice. It was like watching an AHL game with the fast forward on. Both teams were really flying out there.

Tyrell Goulbourne is quickly becoming a special player for the Phantoms. He scored off a turnover in the 1st period to give the Phantoms what was at the time a 3-2 lead and as the final seconds of the 2nd period were ticking off the scoreboard, hustled on a fore-check to cause a turnover and give the Phantoms a big goal with 1.5 seconds left before the 2nd intermission.

Evan Rankin picked up the turnover that Goulbourne forced and flung it to an open Kevin Goumas all alone between the circles. Goumas fired one past Driedger with 1.5 left in the period to give the Phantoms a 5-3 lead heading to the 3rd period.

The BSens put pressure on the Phantoms in the third period, but Stolarz stood his ground and the Phantoms held their lead.

Petr Straka put the finishing touches on the win with an empty net goal with 1:31 left to play.


Anthony Stolarz (30 saves - 33 shots) got the start in net tonight for the Phantoms, with Jason LaBarbera backing him up.

Jesper Pettersson was re-assigned to Reading (ECHL), but the Phantoms continued to roll with a lineup of 11 forwards and seven defensemen.

Davis Drewiske was re-assigned from Philadelphia and played tonight for Lehigh Valley alongside Robert Hagg.

Nick Cousins returned to the lineup after being hit up high Friday 10/30 vs. St. John's and missing four games. Cousins took a lineup spot from Cole Bardreau, who played his first game since 10/17 on Sunday against Binghamton.

Aaron Palushaj remains out of the lineup, missing his second straight game after taking a big hit in Syracuse. Head coach Scott Gordon said he might get back into the lineup this weekend.

Unfortunately, Cole Bardreau is back on the injured list and Gordon said he will be out for a bit.

Phantoms Scratches: Cole Bardreau (injured), Colin McDonald (injured), Michael Parks (injured), Aaron Palushaj (injured), Brandon Alderson (healthy), Matt Lashoff (healthy), Jay Rosehill (healthy) & Logan Pyett (out indefinitely)

Lines (Starters in Bold/Italics)

Taylor Leier - Tim Brent - Danick Martel
Petr Straka - Nick Cousins - Chris Conner
Tyrell Goulbourne - Kevin Sundher - Evan Rankin
           Kevin Goumas - Pavel Padakin

Shayne Gostisbehere - Andrew MacDonald
Davis Drewiske - Robert Hagg
Samuel Morin - Mark Alt
Christian Marti

Anthony Stolarz - Jason LaBarbera


1st Period

3:49: BNG - Schnieder (6) - Claesson, McCormick
4:27: BNG - Greening (3) - unassisted
4:42: LV - Brent (4) - Leier, MacDonald
5:08: BNG - (PP) Fraser, minor (cross-checking)
5:30: LV - PPG Gostisbehere (2) - Brent, Conner
16:22: LV - Goulbourne (4) - Sundher

2nd Period

3:27: LV - Cousins (4) - Conner
4:08: BNG - McCormick (2) - Paul
4:28: BNG - (PP) Lepine, minor (elbowing)
14:25: LV - (PP) Cousins, minor (tripping)
17:02: BNG - (PP) Carlisle, minor (holding)
19:58: LV - Goumas (2) - Rankin, Goulbourne

3rd Period

4:47: LV - (PP) Rankin, minor (tripping)
18:29: LV - ENG Straka (7) - Cousins, Rankin


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