Pack Win Streak at eightJan 27, 2016
Adam Tambellini’s early third-period goal was the game-winner, and Magnus Hellberg made 27 saves Wednesday night at the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza in Wilkes-Barre, PA, as the Hartford Wolf Pack extended a winning streak to eight games with a 3-1 victory over the Atlantic Division-leading Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins.
The eight consecutive wins represent the second-longest streak in Wolf Pack history, surpassed only by a run that saw the 2004-05 Wolf Pack win the first nine games of that season.
Former Penguin Jayson Megna added a goal and an assist for the Wolf Pack in Wednesday’s win, and Travis Oleksuk sealed the victory with an empty-net goal. Niclas Andersen scored the only Penguin goal, and Matt Murray made 26 saves.
“It was a good game, pretty defensive game by both teams I think,” Tambellini said. “With us getting those couple chances, with [Megna] scoring early and with our line chipping in, was nice, and we’re just trying to keep that going from now on. We’re on a pretty good run right now, so keep doing what we’re doing and we should win a lot of games.”
The first period was scoreless until its final minute, but with the Wolf Pack shorthanded for the first time, Megna scored his second goal in as many games since returning from a recall stint with the parent New York Rangers.
Marek Hrivik grabbed a bouncing puck just outside the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton blue line and sent Megna in alone on Murray. Megna faked to the forehand and then put a backhand shot into the top shelf, with 36.9 seconds left in the period.
That was the Wolf Pack’s seventh shorthanded goal of the season.
The Penguins then got an early second-period goal that was the only scoring of the middle frame.
Andersen evened the score at 4:14 of the second, taking a feed from the left-wing side by Sahir Gill and burying a shot from the left side of the slot past the catching glove of Hellberg.
The tie lasted for nearly a full period, before Tambellini put the Wolf Pack ahead to stay at 4:03 of the third session. Chad Nehring moved the puck ahead to Tambellini, who broke down the left side and snapped a shot through Murray, for Tambellini’s 11th goal of his rookie season.
“Chad made a really good play on the blue line there,” said Tambellini. “I tried to shoot through a little bit of a screen, and the blocker (side) looked a little open, so I tried to go for it.”
After the Penguins pulled Murray, the Wolf Pack lost a defensive-zone draw with 1:02 left in the third, but Hellberg stopped a shot by Kael Mouillierat. Raphael Diaz and Megna then combined to get the puck to Oleksuk in center ice, and he hit the open net with 50.8 seconds left to ice the win.
The Wolf Pack will look to tie the franchise record with a ninth straight win this Friday, January 29, when the Bridgeport Sound Tigers visit the XL Center for a 7:15 PM game. At all Friday-night Wolf Pack home games, fans can enjoy $1 hot dogs and $2 beers, through the start of the second period. This Friday also begins “Hartford Hockey Heritage Weekend” at the XL Center, as the Wolf Pack salutes over four decades of hockey history in Hartford. The first 2,000 fans into the game Friday will take home a free Wolf Pack trading card set, presented by Qdoba Mexican Grill.
Tickets for all 2015-16 Wolf Pack home games are on sale at the Agera Energy Ticket Office at the XL Center, on-line at www.hartfordwolfpack.com and by phone at (877) 522-8499.
To speak with a Wolf Pack representative about season or group tickets, or any of the Wolf Pack’s many ticketing options, call (855) 762-6451, or click here to request more info.
Hartford Wolf Pack 3 at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins 1
Wednesday, January 27, 2016 - Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza
Hartford 1 0 2 - 3
W-B/Scranton 0 1 0 - 1
1st Period-1, Hartford, Megna 9 (Hrivik), 19:23 (SH). Penalties-Seymour Wbs (high-sticking), 14:35; Andersson Hfd (tripping), 17:50.
2nd Period-2, W-B/Scranton, Andersen 3 (Gill, Rowney), 4:14. Penalties-Andersson Hfd (hooking), 2:10; Sundqvist Wbs (diving/embellishment), 2:10.
3rd Period-3, Hartford, Tambellini 11 (Nehring), 4:03. 4, Hartford, Oleksuk 4 (Megna, Diaz), 19:09 (EN). Penalties-No Penalties
Shots on Goal-Hartford 8-8-13-29. W-B/Scranton 4-12-12-28.
Power Play Opportunities-Hartford 0 / 1; W-B/Scranton 0 / 1.
Goalies-Hartford, Hellberg 16-10-0 (28 shots-27 saves). W-B/Scranton, Murray 16-8-0 (28 shots-26 saves).
Referees-Francois St. Laurent (93), Tom Chmielewski (43).
Linesmen-Francois Dussureault (60), Bob Goodman (90).