Hartford, CT - Oscar Lindberg and Danny Kristo had a goal and an assist each, and David LeNeveu made 24 saves Tuesday night at the XL Center, as the Hartford Wolf Pack defeated the Adirondack Phantoms by a score of 4-1.
It was the second straight win, and third in the last four games, for the Wolf Pack, who also got goals from Bretton Stamler and Darroll Powe. Tye McGinn scored the only Adirondack goal.
“We had an early goal and some big saves and I think for the most part our defense was really strong,” Wolf Pack head coach Ken Gernander said.
The Wolf Pack (17-23-0-5, 39 pts.) have now won four straight in the season series with the Phantoms, against whom they are 6-1-0-1 in eight meetings on the year.
The two clubs combined for three goals in the first 5:11 of the game, and the Wolf Pack would come out of the first period leading 2-1.
After the Phantoms had scored inside the first minute of the game the last two times they and the Wolf Pack had met, Hartford got a goal from Kristo only 23 seconds into Tuesday’s game. Lindberg’s shot from the left circle was denied by Adirondack goaltender Cal Heeter, but Kristo pounced on the rebound, stickhandled around Heeter and slid the puck into the net.
The Phantoms tied the game only 3:13 later, at 3:36, on the game’s first power play. With Kyle Beach off for elbowing, McGinn buried his sixth goal in the last six Adirondack games, off the rebound of a Jason Akeson shot.
LeNeveu made a sharp save on a one-timer from the left circle by Akeson, but LeNeveu could not control the rebound. Both Ben Holmstrom and McGinn got whacks at the loose puck, and McGinn was able to jam it inside the post to LeNeveu’s left.
The Pack responded just 1:35 after that, when Lindberg scored at 5:11. Kristo forechecked the puck loose behind the net to Micheal Haley, and Haley found Lindberg in front for the finish past Heeter.
LeNeveu preserved the lead with a left-pad save on a Chris VandeVelde shorthanded breakaway around the 12-minute mark.
Hartford would add a pair of goals to its lead in the second period, making it a 3-1 advantage at 7:48 on Stamler’s first career AHL goal. Stamler came down from his defense position to help the forecheck in deep, and stopped between the hash marks on his way back to the blueline, jumping on the rebound of a J.T. Miller shot and snapping it through Heeter’s legs.
The Wolf Pack then chased Heeter from the game at 14:40 of the second, when Powe scored a shorthanded goal. Powe took a pass from Danny Syvret and launched a rising shot off left wing that beat Heeter’s catching glove for a 4-1 Wolf Pack advantage.
Yann Danis replaced Heeter (four goals-against on 17 shots) at that point and held the Wolf Pack off for the rest of the way, stopping 14 shots, but the Phantoms were unable to cut into the lead.
Tuesday night’s game finished a four-game homestand for the Wolf Pack, who play the first of three straight road games this Friday night, February 7 in Norfolk. The Wolf Pack and Admirals face off at 7:30 PM on Friday, and all the action can be heard live on Fox Sports Radio 1410, and on-line at www.foxsportsradio1410.com and iHeartRadio. Video streaming is available at www.ahllive.com.
The Wolf Pack’s next home game is Saturday, February 15, a 7:00 PM contest against the AHL-leading Manchester Monarchs. The first 3,000 fans into the XL Center that night will receive their very own Dylan McIlrath bobblehead.
Tickets for all Wolf Pack 2013-14 home games are on sale now at the Public Power Ticket Office at the XL Center, on-line at www.hartfordwolfpack.com and by phone at (877) 522-8499. Wolf Pack tickets start as low as $12 for youth 12 years old or younger. To speak with a representative about season or group tickets, call (855) 762-6451.