Ex-Devils goalie Scott Wedgewood haunts his former team in making 27 saves in his first return to Binghamton after being traded away as Rochester rolled to a 4-3 victory on Saturday at The Floyd. The loss was the Devils fourth straight, as they fell to 8-10-3-0 on the season and further down the ladder in the North Division.
Rochester (12-5-2-0) came out flying in the opening twenty minutes and held Binghamton without a shot on goal until 6:29 left, as netminder Mackenzie Blackwood came up with some big saves to keep his team in it. He would finish the night with 33 saves.
In the second period, the Americans scored twice to take a 2-1 lead from goals by Zach Redmond (13) and a late one by Kevin Porter (5) with 31 seconds left. The Devils lone goal was by Blake Pietila (7) with some nice passing between Brandon Gignac and Nick Lappin to set up Pietila across the slot for a power play tally.
Rochester pulled ahead by two at the start of the final period when Wayne Simpson simply poked home the puck by Blackwood with two Rochester players in front and lapse of defensive coverage by Eric Gryba. Binghamton then cut the deficit to one when Blake Speers hit the post that fooled everyone on the ice, as play continued. Josh Jacobs raced towards the net and backhanded the puck into the empty net.
With just over two minutes remaining and Blackwood pulled for the extra attacker, Devils’ defenseman Colton White coughed up the puck near the blueline with a weak pass that was intercepted by Alexander Nylander, as he scored on an empty netter for a 4-2 Amerks lead. That would be a costly turnover on a careless effort.
Egor Sharangovich made it interesting with his third of the season with a snapper from out front, but Wedgewood did what he had to do to get the job done under pressure in the waning seconds for the 4-3 Rochester win.
Line-Up, Game #21
Forwards: Gignac - Schmelzer - Studenic, Pietila - Rooney - Lappin, Baddock - McLeod - Bastian, Speers - Sharangovich - Gabriel
Defensemen: White - Gryba, Ramage - Santini, Sissons - Jacobs
In Goal: Mackenzie Blackwood, Eddie Lack
Scratches: Eric Tangradi, Brian Strait, John Quenneville out injured. Healthy, Tariq Hammond and Michael Kapla
Post Game Notes
- Amerks took the first of ten meetings between the two clubs and the Devils need to find a way to play with more urgency. The effort is there when needed, but they still haven’t put together a 60 minute effort on a consistent basis. Too many mistakes that ended up costing them the game.
- Sissons didn’t play well with several turnovers and a bad defensive performance, as this has been going on now for some time. At one point, he simply gave up on the puck as he looks to be nervous under pressure. A stint in Adirondack would be in order as he is over-whelmed at times.
- Pietila now has 7 goals on the season and 4th in his last 5 games as he has been relied upon the powerplay with this his 3rd.
- Wedgewood appeared injured when Kevin Rooney fell on top of his shoulder towards the end of the game. He was seen favoring it as he skated off the ice after celebrations were in order. That’s the one area of concern on him, he’s injury prone.
- A fight broke out after the Devils’ second goal between Kurtis Gabriel and Dalton Smith but it was quickly interfered with once Gabriel fell to one knee. Gabriel has been searching for some games to find a dancing partner but there is just so few fighters in hockey these days.
- Sharangovich with two points has responded well after he was a healthy scratch in the mini series in Toronto last weekend.
- Binghamton 1/5 on the man advantage. Again, the lack of consistency has plagued this team so far this season.
#1. Wayne Simpson (1g), #2. Kevin Porter (1g), #3. Egor Sharangovich (1g, 1a)
Next game happens to be at home on Wednesday as the Devils face off with the Utica Comets.