“I can’t get enough and I can’t get my fill
Shoot to thrill…”
A thriller in Allentown on Wednesday night saw the Phantoms defeat the Hershey Bears 3-2 in an overtime with shoot-out. It was our first experience with the shoot-out in Allentown, and even the officials weren’t sure how many rounds it was going to go (three, it turns out). Ultimately, Blair Jones, on loan from the Flyers, provided the sparks. He sent a superb pass across the net in the first period which was easily buried from the back door by Andrew Gordon. He also scored the winning goal in the shoot-out. But, I’d be remiss if I didn’t give “All My Love” to Rob Zepp. The Zepper just continues to stone in the goal, allowing his defenders to support the charge and take chances. Despite super play this season from Laughton (in Philly right now), Gostisbehere (injured right now), and Cousins, it would be “Nobody’s Fault But Mine” if I didn’t list Zepp as our MVP at this early season juncture.
Home (Ice), Sweet Home (Ice):
I’ve heard and read quotes from the Phantoms’ coaches and players ad nauseam about what a beautiful building the PPL Center is, and how great the fans are and all of that. And it’s not that I don’t believe them or appreciate the sentiment (or the gorgeous building..). However, at some point it does feel a bit like lip service. It’s the cliche thing to say: “We love it here. The fans are great. It really gives us a lift.” OK. Fine. Go out and win us some hockey games fellas…
And, they have. Let’s take a quick look back at the home season thus far:
10/17: 4-3 OT Win
10/24: 4-2 Win (Come from behind)
10/29: 2-1 OT Loss
11/1: 4-2 Loss
11/15: 3-2 Win
11/19: 3-2 OT Win (ShootOut)
So that’s a 4-2 record, with 9 of a possible 12 standings points. There have been 3 overtime games with 1 loss, 1 win, and 1 shoot-out win. Of the 6 games, 4 have been decided by 1 point, while the other two have been by 2 points each.
That’s some exciting hockey, my friends (he says foreshadowing to a future post due out next week…). I’m gonna just keep drinking that Crabby Ale because it’s obviously good luck!
Stacking wins together will go a long way towards climbing in the standings. With another two points Wednesday night, the Phantoms remain in third place in the East Division of the Eastern Conference of the AHL, with 15 points. They trail Wilkes Barre (21) and Hershey (18), but have still played only 14 games to 16 for Hershey and 18 for WBS.
The lineup appears stable from Wednesday night. We’ll see if Blair Jones remains on the top line, but he certainly played well enough. It was confirmed yesterday that Anthony Stolarz will start in goal in one of these two games Friday and Saturday, but we’ll have to wait to find out which one.
I won’t be at the game tonight, but I will try to tweet or re-tweet the lines prior to the start of the game.
Welcome the Worcester Sharks for one of their two visits to Allentown this season–They’ll be back in February. The Sharks had been one of the highest-scoring teams in the AHL for a while, but have recently lost three straight games. They’re in second place in the Atlantic Division with a 8-6-1 record.
Broadcast: TV2/AM1470/FM89.9(arena only)
PreGame: 6:00PM Gates; 6:20PM Radio PreGame; 6:30PM TV2 PreGame Live from Chickie’s and Pete’s
Promotion: Orange “Mo-vember” T-Shirts for all. They will be on the seats.
Tickets: Seats are going fast today. Order them up if you need them. It’s not clear how they’ll handle the shirts for GA folks if it comes to that. Ticket software still promoting Wednesday’s Thanksgiving Eve game with “add-on” promotion.
Phantoms back in action TOMORROW night at the PPL Center! It’s our first Home-Ice back-to-back! Mo-vember weekend continues with face-painting moustaches done by the Phantoms’ Wives and Girlfriends!
See you at the arena (tomorrow, anyway)