Pack Win OT Thriller in AllentownOct 22, 2016
Nicklas Jensen’s goal at 1:55 of overtime lifted the Wolf Pack to a 5-4 win over the Lehigh Valley Phantoms in a wild game Saturday night at the PPL Center.
Tanner Glass scored twice for the Wolf Pack, which also got goals from John Gilmour and Justin Fontaine. Magnus Hellberg made 26 saves in the Hartford net to improve to 2-0-0 on the season.
Corban Knight, Andy Miele, Mark Zengerle and Chris Conner all scored for Lehigh Valley, and ex-Yale Eli Alex Lyon, making his professional debut in goal for the Phantoms, stopped 29 shots.
“It wasn’t easy,” said Glass of the win. “I don’t think it’s going to be easy for this club all year. We’ve got to have that kind of effort every night, and that resiliency, and hopefully we can get some more wins like that.”
After Lehigh Valley battled back from a 3-1 third-period deficit to tie the game at four, the Wolf Pack got the only two shots of the OT session. On the winning play, Robin Kovacs passed the puck to Jensen on the right side in the offensive zone, and Jensen stickhandled toward the middle before using a Phantom defender as a screen and putting a bullet into the top corner over Lyon’s catching glove.
Conner had tied the score with 9:01 left in the third, only 1:13 after Glass scored his second of the game.
“It’s been a while, I think it’s been about 12 years, sophomore year or junior year of college, since I’ve had that,” joked Glass, who has spent most of the last seven seasons in the NHL. “It’s nice, I’m trying to work on that part of my game, and you get more touches, more ice time, and I think I can help the team that way.”
Miele cut the Wolf Pack’s lead to 3-2 at 5:05 of the third, knocking in a pass from the left-wing corner by Greg Carey from right on top of Hellberg, and Mark Zengerle made it 3-3 less than three minutes later, at 8:03, off of a goalmouth scramble.
Just 1:43 thereafter, at 9:46, Glass banged home the rebound of a shot by Ryan Graves from the left point, snapping the puck past Lyon from a sharp angle on the left side.
Conner got that goal back only seconds after Hellberg had stopped him on a breakaway. Danick Martel continued the attack for Lehigh Valley, moving behind the net and centering to Conner from below the goal line to Hellberg’s left.
The Wolf Pack got the only goal of the first period, scoring at the 3:57 mark. Glass recorded his first of the season, deflecting a quick shot from the right point by Michael Paliotta past Lyon on the glove side.
Hartford would control much of the action in the second period, outshooting the Phantoms 18-7 and drawing four power plays, but would be Lehigh Valley that scored the first goal of the frame.
That was the Wolf Pack’s first shorthanded goal-against of the year, scored by Knight at the 7:51 mark. Knight took the puck away from Jensen along the boards in the Phantom zone, and got away from Calle Andersson to find a lane into the Wolf Pack end. Knight burst toward the goal and snapped a shot past Hellberg’s catching glove for a 1-1 tie.
That mishap dropped the Wolf Pack power play to 0-for-14 on the year, but that unit would recover to score on its next two opportunities.
With Nic Aube-Kubel off for hooking, Gilmour netted the second goal of his rookie season at 16:58. After Malte Stromwall won a faceoff in the right-wing circle, Gilmour snapped a shot from the point that went through a screen set by Boo Nieves and past Lyon.
Then, with only 57 seconds remaining in the period and Knight in the penalty box for hooking, Fontaine would score, in his first game with the Wolf Pack after being signed as a free agent by the parent New York Rangers on Sunday. Andersson passed the puck to Fontaine at the top of the left circle, and his one-timer went through a Chris Brown screen and into the net.
The Wolf Pack return home to the XL Center on Sunday, hosting the St. John’s IceCaps, with faceoff at 5:00 PM. Each of the Wolf Pack’s Sunday home games feature the Wolf Pack’s “Click It or Ticket Family Value Pack”. The Family Value Pack includes two tickets, two sodas and two hot dogs, all for just $40.
Tickets for all Wolf Pack 2016-17 home games are on sale now at the Agera Energy Ticket Office at the XL Center, on-line at www.hartfordwolfpack.com and by phone at (877) 522-8499.
Season ticket information for the Wolf Pack’s 2016-17 AHL season can be found on-line at www.hartfordwolfpack.com. To speak with a representative about all of the Wolf Pack’s many attractive ticketing options, call (855) 762-6451.
Hartford Wolf Pack 5 (OT) at Lehigh Valley Phantoms 4
Saturday, October 22, 2016 - PPL Center
Hartford 1 2 1 1 - 5
Lehigh Valley 0 1 3 0 - 4
1st Period-1, Hartford, Glass 1 (Paliotta, Hrivik), 3:57. Penalties-Graves Hfd (cross-checking), 0:56; Sanheim Lv (holding the stick), 4:52; Summers Hfd (interference), 7:13; Brennan Lv (cross-checking), 8:30; Carey Hfd (hooking), 16:20.
2nd Period-2, Lehigh Valley, Knight 1 7:51 (SH). 3, Hartford, Gilmour 2 (Stromwall), 16:58 (PP). 4, Hartford, Fontaine 1 (Andersson), 19:03 (PP). Penalties-Hagg Lv (cross-checking), 3:02; Sanheim Lv (hooking), 7:22; Aube-Kubel Lv (hooking), 15:43; Knight Lv (hooking), 18:49.
3rd Period-5, Lehigh Valley, Miele 1 (Carey, McDonald), 5:05. 6, Lehigh Valley, Zengerle 2 (Leier, Weal), 8:03. 7, Hartford, Glass 2 (Graves), 9:46. 8, Lehigh Valley, Conner 1 (Martel, Morin), 10:59. Penalties-Andersson Hfd (hooking), 6:00; Kovacs Hfd (tripping), 11:35.
OT Period-9, Hartford, Jensen 2 (Kovacs), 1:55. Penalties-No Penalties
Shots on Goal-Hartford 9-18-5-2-34. Lehigh Valley 11-7-12-0-30.
Power Play Opportunities-Hartford 2 / 6; Lehigh Valley 0 / 5.
Goalies-Hartford, Hellberg 2-0-0-0 (30 shots-26 saves). Lehigh Valley, Lyon 0-0-1-0 (34 shots-29 saves).
Referees-Evgenii Romasko (39), Furman South (44).
Linesmen-Tim Lyons (33), Jud Ritter (34).