Photo: JustSports Photography
ALLENTOWN, PA – Ryan Rupert, Jack Rodewald, and Phil Varone all scored as the Binghamton Senators came back to tie the game three separate times but eventually fell 4-3 to the Lehigh Valley Phantoms on Friday night at PPL Center.
Jordan Weal put the Phantoms on the board with 1:01 left in the opening period for a 1-0 lead. Chris Conner sent the puck from below the goal line to Weal at the bottom of the left circle who fired a shot that beat Matt O’Connor on the blocker side. The goal was Weal’s fifth of the year with assists from Conner and TJ Brennan. Binghamton went into the first intermission trailing by a goal while being outshot 6-5.
The Senators evened the score 1-1 on an Andreas Englund shot that was deflected. Nick Paul dished the puck to the high slot for Englund who ripped a slap shot that Rupert deflected by the blocker of Alex Lyon at 9:13 of the middle frame. Englund and Paul both collected assists on the goal at the 9:13 mark.
A few minutes later, Lehigh Valley regained the lead, 2-1. Greg Carey intercepted the puck behind Binghamton’s net and sent a quick pass to Mark Zengerle who snapped a shot that beat O’Connor on the short side at 11:47 of the second period with the only assist going to Carey.
Binghamton came back to tie the game again just 4:38 into the final period. Varone dragged the puck around the defender and backhanded a pass to Rodewald who tapped in his third of the season. Rodewald’s goal tied the contest 2-2 with assists from Varone and Max McCormick.
The tie game didn’t last long as the Phantoms once again took a one-goal lead. From the left point, Brennen fired a shot through traffic that was stopped by O’Connor. The rebound was gathered and sent by the left leg pad of O’Connor off the stick of Taylor Leier for a Phantoms’ 3-2 lead at the 6:39 mark.
At 8:13 of the third, Varone scooped up a rebound and tied the game 3-3. Off a faceoff, defenseman Ben Harpur took a shot on net that banked off the end wall and came back out to the right of the goaltender Lyon. Varone skated in and backhanded the puck under the cross bar for his third of the year with assists from Harpur and Englund.
Weal struck again for Lehigh Valley late in the game to give the Phantoms a 4-3 advantage. The play was made by Conner who skated behind the net drawing players to him as he backhanded the puck to a wide-open Weal who snuck in his second of the game at 15:55 of the third period. Binghamton has a late power play with the net empty but couldn’t convert and that held up as the final.
O’Connor stopped 21 of 25 shots in the loss while Lyon denied 32 of 35 in the victory.
The Senators return to home ice tomorrow night to host the Syracuse Crunch at 7:05 p.m. The B-Sens are honoring all First Responders with a buy one, get one free ticket! CLICK HERE FOR OFFER. Can’t make it? Fans can tune in on U.S. Country 96.9 FM, 680 AM, iHeartRadio’s website and mobile app, and AHL Live.
Affordable ticket packages for the 2016-17 season of Binghamton Senators hockey are on sale now! For more information on tickets, including pricing and location, visit www.binghamtonsenators.com or call the Senators front office at 607-722-SENS (7367).
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