NEWARK, NJ - Binghamton Devils played a spirited game with Lehigh Valley for the most part on Friday but came up short in a 3-2 loss to the visiting Phantoms at RWJ Barnabas Health Hockey House. Despite the outcome, the team continued to grind it out in what has been a frustrating short season so far for Binghamton.
The BDevils (3-6-3-1) and Phantoms (9-3-2-0) will face one another once again on Saturday during this so-called “home” and home series over the weekend for the rubber match set for Saturday in Allentown, PA.
Brett Seney started things off back from his lengthy absence recording his second goal of the year after banking the puck off of the post and Phantoms’ netminder Alex Lyon from behind the cage along the end boards.
Phantoms would respond and tie it early in the middle frame as Tanner Laczynski scored his first of three for the natural hat-trick off of Gilles Senn, who was once again was solid finishing with 27 saves on the night. If only the D could aid in his efforts on a rather young core of players handling the blueline.
But the BDevils would regain their lead shortly after on a display of some smooth puck-handling skills by rookie forward Graeme Clarke while skating around the perimeter until he found an open Ben Street near the circle, which led to Nikita Okhotiuk for his sharpshooting reactions near the goal-line for his second of the season. What a play by the trio!
However, frustrations would mount for the final 20 minutes.
In the final period, Laczynski completed the hat-trick with his 4th and 5th goals of the year as Binghamton had an opportunity to send the game into OT but failed to deliver on a 6v4 with Senn pulled and a late penalty called against LV. It wasn’t much of an attack as the number one ranked penalty kill in the league did their thing and rode the momentum for the win.
Shots ended up 35-30 in favor of the Devils in one of their better outings of the season
LINE-UP, GAME #13
Martel - Street - Clarke, Seney - Schnarr - Foote, Studenic - St. Denis - Zetterlund, Thomson - Darcy - Irvine
Vukojevic/Carrick - Okhotiuk/Jacobs - Bahl/Walsh
Senn - Cormier
Brodeur, White, Koules, Groleau & Schmelzer
POSTGAME BULLET NOTES
- Both clubs showed spirited play in what was an entertaining game with up-and-done action on the ice.
- Okhotiuk was terrific as well as Clarke as they both have recently stood out. Both were engaged but you can tell Okhotiuk has settled in with Clarke right behind him. They will need some additional time in the A before any talk of the next step in the N.
- The red hot PP has cooled off, rather badly I would suggest, as Binghamton was 0/6 and could not adjust to the Phantoms’ stubborn PK which is #1 in the A.
- Clarke finished with a game-high 8 shots, incredible. The next nearest is Laczynski with 6. The coaches obviously have noticed his potential as they continue to feed him the puck.
- Speaking of the 19-year-old Clarke, he got tangled up with Phantoms’ 18-year-old prospect Zayde Wisdom at center ice as the two battled one another. Wisdom then reacted with a mauling from behind as Clarke was caught by surprise while entering the offensive zone with his teammates quickly responding to defend the rookie forward. Something to keep an eye on in moving forward. Wisdom was then tossed out of the game for his reactions and a suspension perhaps looming.
- Veteran Defenseman Josh Jacobs also laid out a big hit on Wisdom in the opening period as he was seen on the bench smiling soon afterward. Take note as the two clubs have 14 games remaining between one another this year.
Tanner Laczynski (3g), Logan Day (2a), Brett Seney (1g)
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