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Thompson and Watson Lead Sens To Third Straight Win

Billy Thompson stopped 39 shots and Greg Watson’s first period scoring strike was the game’s only goal as the Binghamton Senators blanked the Rochester Americans 1-0 Wednesday night at the Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena.

A mid-week crowd of 3,987 was treated to the Sens’ third straight win that, coupled with Wilkes-Barre’s 3-2 loss in Norfolk, lifted the club into a share of fifth place with the Penguins.

In an opening  period that featured a combined 31 shots, with a 19-12 edge to Rochester, it was Binghamton that got on the board to grab a 1-0 lead late in the first.

Greg Watson, who had two goals to his credit and both having come in the same contest on October 18th, snapped a 52-game drought when he lifted a rebound over the left shoulder of Amerks goaltender Ryan Miller (23 saves) at 17:16.

Brian McGrattan and Peter Smrek drew the assists on the Watson goal.

Thompson was at his best in that first period, stopping all 19 Rochester chances, including a slick glove save on Paul Gaustad while on his side during one of the Amerks’ three power play chances.

In three starts in place of suspended number one goaltender Ray Emery, Thompson has surrendered just five goals in going 3-0 with a 1.67 goals against average.

After Binghamton’s Charlie Stephens was tagged with a five-minute high-sticking call for clipping Gaustad at 2:27 of the final period, the Sens’ penalty killing unit extended its streak to 20 straight in holding Rochester at bay for just under four minutes.

An Amerk minor nullified the final sixty-four seconds of the Stephens call and Binghamton made Watson’s goal stand up for the remaining twelve minutes of the third period.

The Sens squelched the league’s number one power play unit, holding Rochester scoreless in six chances.  Binghamton also took the collar, going 0x7.

The win was Binghamton’s fourth straight in the season series as the Sens remained unbeaten all-time at home versus Rochester (5-0-1).

The same two clubs will meet again Friday night at Blue Cross Arena in a 7:35 p.m. draw, the first of three road games in three nights for Binghamton.

[View Box Score]

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