BRIDGEPORT, CT – The Lehigh Valley Phantoms traveled east to visit the Bridgeport Sound Tigers for a Saturday night affair in search of their ninth straight victory. It was the third time these two clubs had met on the season. Their previous encounters came on October 21st and October 29th, both resulting in Bridgeport wins.
This one would start off pretty even with neither team having any real stretches of complete dominance.
Lehigh Valley would open the scoring 8:53 into the opening frame with a power play goal. Maxim Lamarche was able to weave his way into the slot and wrist a shot bar down on Bridgeport netminder, Eamon McAdam, to make it 1-0 Phantoms.
Just a few minutes later, Bridgeport would respond with a power play marker of their own. Devon Toews‘ point drive was redirected by Michael Dal Colle and past Lehigh Valley goaltender, Alex Lyon, to draw it even for the Sound Tigers heading into the first intermission.
2nd period rolls around, and the Sound Tigers would begin to open up things a bit. While the Phantoms were on the man advantage, they were the victims of a turnover at the Bridgeport blue line which led to a shorthanded breakaway for Steve Bernier, who beat Lyon glove side to make it 2-1 Sound Tigers.
The home team would increase their lead to a pair at the 13:11 mark of the middle frame. Bernier was behind the cage, found Josh Winquist camped out in front of the crease, and he slid it under Lyon to make it 3-1 Sound Tigers after 40 minutes.
The Phantoms would get one back in the opening moments of the third period. On their second power play tally of the evening, T.J. Brennan would let loose an absolute cannon blast from the right point that beat McAdam through traffic to pull Lehigh Valley within 3-2. That is as close to a comeback as the Phantoms would get.
With 3:24 left in regulation, the Sound Tigers would put it out of reach. Josh Ho-Sang was sprung on a clean breakaway and he’s able to backhand a shot past Lyon to reclaim Bridgeport’s two-goal lead. Winquist would pot his second goal of the night on an empty net for good measure to make it 5-2 Sound Tigers which would be your final score, snapping Lehigh Valley’s eight-game win streak.
Between the pipes, Lyon stopped 19 of the 23 Bridgeport shots he faced throughout the night. On the other end of the ice, McAdam was able to push aside 26 of the 28 Lehigh Valley offerings he faced, earning his first AHL win of the season in his first AHL start after being recalled from the ECHL’s Missouri Mavericks.
The Phantoms will get a couple days to rest before hitting the ice again on Wednesday night when they will hit the road for Binghamton for their first match-up of the season against the Senators in the first of a two-game home-at-home series between the two clubs with face-off set for 7:05pm EST.