Binghamton Devils won their first ever road game and took three out of a possible four points on the weekend with a clean 5-1 victory over the Rocket Saturday afternoon at Place Bell, Laval. Nick Lappin scored a hat trick and netminder Scott Wedgewood made 36 saves in his season debut for the BDevils (2-0-1-0) and handed Laval (3-1-0-0) their first loss.
It was the second consecutive game a player scored a hat trick for the BDevils as John Quenneville recorded his in Friday night’s wild 8-7 loss in OT to the same Rocket club.
Lappin got things rolling less than 24 hours after the slug fest that took place on Friday, as he scored on the power play with some nice tic-tac-toe passing in front from Quenneville and Joe Blandisi that sailed by Rocket netminder Charlie Lindgren and quieted the home crowd.
Laval would get the equalizer when forward Nikita Scherbak’s shot went over Wedgewood’s shoulder from the left circle for his first of the season. Wedgewood was peppered with 16 shots in that first period compared with the Devils’ four.
Devils’ defenseman Brian Strait put Binghamton back in the lead 2-1 just 38 seconds into the second period after a cross ice feed in front by defenseman Josh Jacobs that beat Lindgren over his leg pad. The goal would come on just the Devils’ fifth shot of the day but more importantly, it would be the first of four unanswered goals by Binghamton. Meanwhile, Wedgewood looked solid with several key stops.
Then Nate Bastain’s one timer in front in-between the hash marks gave Binghamton a two goal cushion with a hard pass from Tim Kennedy, as Bastian was left all alone in front of Lindgren. Devils suffer a double minor late in the period as Blandisi was in the box for roughing but shut down the potent Laval power play. Shots 30-9 in favor of Rocket after two.
In the final period with Binghamton up 3-1, Lappin scored his second on a wraparound through Lindgren’s five hole for his third point of the afternoon with an assist by Blandisi and Bracken Kearns. Lappin completed the hat trick with an empty netter as the BDevils won their first road win and take three out of four points on the weekend.
Forwards; Blandisi-Kearns-Lappin, Quenneville-Kennedy-Bastian, Gignac-Rooney-Pietila, Baddock-Speers-Thomson. Defensemen; Strait-Jacobs, Erixon-Loov, MacDonald-Dyblenko. Scott Wedgewood Back up; Mackenzie Blackwood. Scratches; Colton White, Austin Cangelosi, Jan Mandat, Ryan Kujawinski and Michael Kapla.
Post Game Notes
- Binghamton shored up their defense as Erixon was in, Kapla out. Haven’t been too impressed with Loov, but it’s been a small sample size so far.
- Wedgewood was great in net, as it paid off with Coach Kowalsky’s decision not to put him in at some point on Friday to relieve Blackwood, although he would later admit the thought crossed his mind. On the other end of the ice, Lindgren wasn’t sharp tonight, or on Friday when he was pulled after letting in six goals.
- First PP unit the last two nights consisted of Quenneville, Blandisi and Lappin up front, Dyblenko, MacDonald/Speers in back. The PK did a good job in shutting down their powerful PP going 0/4, while Binghamton went 1/2. Shots ended up 37-17.
- Scary moment in the second as Wedgewood took a laser of a shot by Chris Terry to the mask and went down to the ice, but was able to shake it off after a few minutes.
- Blandisi with a three point night, has looked good playing on the top line with Kearns and Lappin. Coach Kowalsky started the game with the second line of JQ, Kennedy and Bastian, who took Pietila’s spot, as Speers was moved to center the fourth line with Cangelosi out. Gignac made his season debut and got big minutes in the third period and came close to scoring his first pro goal.
#1 Wedgewood (36 saves), #2 Lappin (3g 1a), #3 Terry (1a).
Binghamton is off until next weekend when they take on the Crunch in Syracuse on Friday, then at home Saturday as they host Lehigh Valley Phantoms.