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 Lehigh Valley Phantoms

Another Goal for Brooks Not Enough

March 23, 2024 - American Hockey League (AHL)
Lehigh Valley Phantoms News Release

Lehigh Valley Phantoms' Emil Andrae, Brendan Furry, and Rhett Gardner on game night
Lehigh Valley Phantoms' Emil Andrae, Brendan Furry, and Rhett Gardner on game night
(Lehigh Valley Phantoms)

Allentown, PA - Red-hot Adam Brooks (8th) struck for yet another goal but that was all the Phantoms could get against Bridgeport goaltender Ken Appleby who was eatin' good in the neighborhood on his way to a 2-1 victory for the Islanders at PPL Center on Saturday night.

Ruslan Iskhaov (17th) led the B-Isles with the game-winning goal and an assist.

A large Saturday night crowd in downtown Allentown enjoyed the Margaritaville Night festivities and live music from Jimmy and the Parrots.

Lehigh Valley (27-25-8) maintains a hold on the final playoff spot in the Atlantic Division but the lead is now trimmed to just one point over the Springfield Thunderbirds who pushed through for a 6-4 win against Syracuse to climb back into contention.

The Phantoms had the early edge in the contest including a 7-1 shots advantage. But Bridgeport jumped on one of its few opportunities and former New York Rangers forward Julian Gauthier (5th) sniped top shelf on the move with 5:00 left in the first period to give the Islanders the initial lead.

Lehigh Valley countered almost midway through the second when Adam Brooks picked off a clearing try in front of the Bridgeport line and offered a nifty tap to Tanner Laczynski before cutting for the net on the quick give-and-go. Brooks' tying goal at 8:40 into the second period was also good for his ninth point in the last four games.

Since March 16, Brooks (4-5-9) and Laczynski (5-3-8) are the top two scorers in the AHL.

Bridgeport (22-33-7) struck back after an aggressive pinch by the Phantoms led to an Islanders' rush and Ishakov's snipe from the right circle to the top of the cage with 6:30 left in the second period that put the Islanders back in the driver's seat at 2-1.

Lehigh Valley had multiple chances in tight in the third period. One of the best tries came on a fluky bounce when Bridgeport tried to wheel the puck around for a clear but instead had it carom off the skate of a referee in the corner. The perfect deflection hopped directly to Garrett Wilson in the left slot who was ready to pull the trigger but was denied off the right pad of Appleby to keep the game tied.

The Phantoms worked it in tight on several other occasions but Appleby had the answer or the cover each time to hold off the Lehigh Valley attack.

A valiant effort by a shorthanded defensive corps limited the Islanders to just 17 shots on goal. Lehigh Valley played most of the game with just five defensemen after newcomer Hunter McDonald left with an apparent injury just minutes into his pro debut.

The Phantoms also stayed out of the box and afforded the Islanders zero power plays in the contest. It's only the second time this season the opposition has had zero power plays against Lehigh Valley and it was the first time since Opening Night on October 14 against Cleveland.

The Phantoms Magic Number to clinch a playoff spot remains at 20 points with 12 games remaining. Lehigh Valley is back in action on Sunday afternoon against the rival Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins in a 3:05 tilt as part of Kids Takeover Day and also featuring postgame autographs with the Phantoms players presented by NJM Insurance.


1st 15:00 - BRI, J. Gauthier (5) (R. Iskhakov) (0-1)

2nd 8:40 - LV, A. Brooks (8) (T. Laczynski) (1-1)

2nd 13:30 - BRI, R. Iskhakov (17) (M. Maggio) (1-2)


LV 25 - BRI 17


LV 0/2, BRI 0/0


LV, C. Petersen (L) (15/17) (8-12-3)

BRI, K. Appleby (W) (24/25) (8-9-0)


Lehigh Valley (27-25-8)

Bridgeport (22-33-7)


Sunday, March 24 (3:05) vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins - Kids Takeover Day / Postgame Autographs Presented by NJM Insurance

Friday, March 29 (7:00) at Syracuse Crunch

Saturday, March 30 (6:05) at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins

Tuesday, April 2 (7:00) at Hershey Bears

Stay current with the latest Phantoms news with the Phantoms 365 app available for Apple and Android devices and at

Follow the team on Facebook (, Twitter (@lvphantoms), and Instagram (@lehighvalleyphantoms).

Images from this story

Lehigh Valley Phantoms' Emil Andrae, Brendan Furry, and Rhett Gardner on game night
Lehigh Valley Phantoms' Emil Andrae, Brendan Furry, and Rhett Gardner on game night


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The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.

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