Phantoms gain rapidly Senators
PHILADELPHIA - Four different Phantoms scored and Scott Munroe made 33 saves to lift the Philadelphia Phantoms to a 4-1 win over the Grand Rapids Griffins on Saturday night to complete a two-game sweep of the Griffins at the Wachovia Spectrum. With the win, the Phantoms pulled within four points of idle Binghamton in the East Division playoff race, while still holding one game in hand.
The Phantoms picked up two goals each in the first and second periods. Danny Syvret started things off 4:29 into the game when he fired a shot from the left wing that went over the shoulder of Griffins goaltender Jimmy Howard. Then, with four minutes to play in the frame, Rob Sirianni picked up a power play goal from the right side, and the Phantoms led 2-0 after 20 minutes.
Philadelphia picked up two more about 3 ½ minutes apart in the second period. Jonathan Matsumoto scored his 27th of the year with 5:41 to play in the second, doing so right at the end of a 4-on-3 power play. Then with 2:22 remaining, Jon Kalinski put home a feed from Jeff Szwez, giving Philadelphia the four-goal cushion at the second intermission.
Grand Rapids scored its only goal 2:59 into the third frame. A puck took a funny hop off the boards and came back out into the high slot to the surprise of many on the ice. Brian Lashoff quickly took a shot, and Cory Emmerton deflected it between Munroe's pads for the goalie's only blemish on the evening.
Munroe earned the second star along with the win, while Howard stopped 20 of the 24 shots he faced.
With Binghamton idle, the game was one of two the Phantoms held in hand on the Senators. The win puts the Phantoms at 82 points on the year, while Binghamton has 86. Philadelphia still has one game in hand on the Senators.
The Phantoms return home to host Albany on Wednesday before starting a three-game series with Norfolk, with two games at Scope on Friday and Saturday and the third at the Spectrum next Sunday at 5:05. Philadelphia plays its next five games against Albany and Norfolk before closing the season with a home-and-home against the Hershey Bears.
There are just three regular season games remaining at the Wachovia Spectrum. Adult tickets are just $10 and kids tickets just $5 for the remainder of the 2008-09 season. Tickets are going fast for the final game on Friday, April 10 against the Hershey Bears. Tickets are available through ComcastTIX at 1-800-298-4200, at the Wachovia Complex box office or online at Phantomshockey.com.
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