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East Notes: Rats pull away, Devils head home

 Also see… West Notes: Mannino rolls, SA hangs in

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Joey Mormina scored 1:28 into overtime on Sunday to give Adirondack its first overtime win of the season, a 2-1 decision over Wilkes-Barre/Scranton… Mormina has already set career highs in goals (5), assists (16), and points (21) in 65 games… The Phantoms have won back-to-back home games on eight occasions this season, but have failed to capture a third straight home victory each time… Coach Greg Gilbert is two wins shy of 300 for his AHL head coaching career… Adirondack hits the road this weekend for a pair of games in Norfolk and a stop in Hershey on Sunday.
 
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Albany has won four straight games and earned a point in eight straight (6-0-0-2) to open up a 10-point lead on Norfolk for second place in the East Division and home-ice advantage in round one of the Calder Cup Playoffs… Jerome Samson already has a pair of four-point efforts in March and shows a point in 12 of his last 13 contests overall (12-11-23)… Rookie Drayson Bowman is on a four-game scoring streak (2-3-5), and Oskar Osala boasts four goals and six points in six games since joining the team… Rookie defenseman Jamie McBain, who ranks second on the team with 40 points, posted an assist in his NHL debut for Carolina on Tuesday… The Rats visit Hershey and Binghamton this weekend before hosting the Senators on Sunday.
 
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Josh Hennessy was named Reebok/AHL player of the week for the second time this season on Monday after recording nine points (4-5-9) in four road games… Hennessy also earned AHL player of the week honors for the week ending Nov. 29, and he currently has a point in six straight games (5-7-12)… Defenseman Craig Schira is riding a three-game scoring run (1-3-4), and fellow rearguard Geoff Kinrade has a point in four of five (3-2-5)… Kaspars Daugavins has registered a point in four straight (2-3-5) and eight of his last nine outings (4-5-9)… Binghamton hosts Rochester and Albany this weekend before visiting the River Rats on Sunday.
 
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Bridgeport has won a season-high five straight games – two in regulation, two in a shootout, and one in overtime… The Sound Tigers have played past regulation an AHL-high 24 times this season, showing an 8-3 record in overtime and a 7-6 mark in shootouts… Eight different players have tallied Bridgeport’s eight overtime goals on the year, while Trevor Smith has a team-best 46.2 conversion rate in shootouts (6-for-13)… Smith is currently riding a six-game scoring streak (2-6-8), and Tyler Haskins shows three goals in his last two outings… Currently tied with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton for the East Division’s final playoff spot, Bridgeport visits Syracuse on Friday before hosting Manchester and Springfield to close the weekend.
 
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Hartford had been winless in a franchise-record-tying seven straight games (0-3-3-1) prior to capturing a 4-2 decision at Springfield on Friday… Saturday’s 6-2 win over Lowell gave the Wolf Pack back-to-back victories for the first time since Jan. 10-16, but the run ended Wednesday with a 4-2 loss to Providence… Hartford is now six points back of Bridgeport and Wilkes-Barre for a playoff spot… Brodie Dupont’s career-high three-game goal-scoring streak (3-3-6) was snapped on Wednesday… Pierre-Alexandre Parenteau has racked up 5-6-11 in seven games since returning to the lineup… The Wolf Pack continue a six-game homestand this weekend against Springfield and Providence.
 
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Hershey clinched its second straight East Division title with a 5-3 win at Binghamton on Wednesday… The Bears are now 6-1-0-0 against the Senators this season and have outscored them 34-17 in the seven meetings thus far… Wednesday’s victory prevented the Bears from going winless in three straight games for the first time all season… Alexandre Giroux (36-51-87) has taken over the AHL scoring lead from teammate Keith Aucoin (32-54-86); Giroux’s 36 goals are also tops in the league… Kyle Wilson has recorded four points (2-2-4) in his last two contests… Hershey continues to lead the AHL in both power play (21.7 percent) and penalty kill (88.3)… The Bears host Albany and Adirondack this weekend, with a Saturday visit to Syracuse in between.
 
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Lowell recently completed a stretch that had it playing 11 of 15 games on the road, and the Devils will finish the regular season with 10 of their last 12 contests on home ice… That begins with a three-game weekend against division foes Providence, Portland, and Worcester… Lowell made its first ever trip to Syracuse on Friday and earned a 3-1 win over the Crunch… Patrick Davis’s four-game scoring streak (1-3-4) ended in Tuesday’s 3-2 shootout loss at Portland… Rookies Nathan Perkovich and Matt Taormina are tied with Ben Walter for the team lead with eight power play goals apiece; the Devils’ man advantage ranks third in the AHL at 21.0 percent.
 
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Manchester has just one win in its last seven contests (1-5-1-0) and shows a 5-11-1-0 record since the beginning of February… The Monarchs have been shut out in back-to-back games, dropping decisions at Portland and Syracuse… Goaltender Jonathan Bernier, who leads the AHL in save percentage (.936) and ranks second in goals-against average (2.08), earned a shootout win for parent-club Los Angeles on Friday at Dallas in his first NHL appearance of the season… Manchester hosts Portland on Friday before visiting Bridgeport on Saturday and Portland on Sunday.
 
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Norfolk is winless in four straight games (0-2-0-2) for the first time since a five-game slid (0-4-1-0) from Dec. 19 to Jan. 2… The Admirals are now just one point up on Wilkes-Barre/Scranton for the East Division’s third and final guaranteed playoff spot… Rookie forward Dana Tyrell saw his six-game scoring streak (2-6-8) end on Wednesday in a 2-1 loss at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton… Rookie goaltender Dustin Tokarski is just 0-3-2 in his last five outings… Norfolk has the AHL’s top-ranked penalty kill on the road (86.2 percent) and ranks second overall (86.7 percent)… The Admirals open a five-game homestand with a pair of tilts against Adirondack this weekend.
 
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After a 3-2 shootout win over Lowell on Tuesday, Portland will enter Friday’s contest at Manchester looking to win consecutive games for the first time in the month of March… The Pirates then visit Lowell on Saturday and host Manchester on Sunday… Tyler Ennis, who leads all AHL rookies with 21 goals, 41 assists, and 62 points in 65 games, has not gone without a point in more than two straight contests since a five-game dry spell from Nov. 29 to Dec. 6… Defenseman Mike Kostka shows an assist in six straight games (0-7-7), while Kyle Wanvig has a helper in three straight (0-4-4)… Each of Portland’s final 12 games will be against divisional opponents.
 
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Providence halted a six-game winless skid on Wednesday with a 4-2 victory at Hartford… The Bruins are now five points out of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference… Levi Nelson has recorded three points (1-2-3) in his last two games after going scoreless in his previous nine outings… Kirk MacDonald had been without a point in seven straight games and without a goal since Jan. 31 prior to scoring twice at Hartford on Wednesday… The Bruins are the only AHL team that is currently under .500 at home (15-18-2-1) and over .500 on the road (17-15-1-0)… Providence plays three road contests in as many days this weekend, visiting Lowell, Worcester, and Hartford.
 
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Springfield, which is currently on a two-game winning streak (both in a shootout), has not won three straight games all season long… The Falcons are 0-4-2-0 this season when attempting to extend a winning streak to three games… Springfield has played 20 games beyond regulation this season, going 5-8 in overtime and 4-3 in the shootout… Rob Hisey netted the shootout winner on Saturday vs. Hershey and then scored two goals and an assist in Sunday’s 5-4 shootout win at Portland… Ex-Bear Dean Arsene notched his first goal of the season in Saturday’s win over Hershey… The Falcons visit Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Hartford, and Bridgeport this weekend.
 
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Syracuse halted its three-game losing skid with a 2-0 win over Manchester on Wednesday… Kevin Lalande earned his 19th start in the Crunch’s last 21 games and picked up his second shutout of the season with 33 saves in net… Jordan LaVallee-Smotherman snapped a six-game goal-scoring drought with the game-winner on Wednesday… The Crunch had won four straight road games prior to Sunday’s 3-1 loss at Albany… Chad Kolarik has netted a goal in five of seven games (5-3-8) since joining Syracuse at the NHL trade deadline… The Crunch host Bridgeport and Hershey this weekend.
 
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With Friday’s 5-3 win over Providence, the Penguins have taken four straight wins over the Bruins dating back to March 2008… Wilkes-Barre/Scranton dropped a 5-4 shootout decision at Adirondack on Saturday, but it marked the team’s first point of the season when trailing after two periods (0-23-0-1)… Nick Johnson has registered a point in four of his last five games (3-2-5), while Dustin Jeffrey had a four-game scoring run (2-3-5) snapped on Wednesday vs. Norfolk… The Penguins, currently tied with Bridgeport for the East Division’s final playoff spot, host Springfield and Rochester this weekend before embarking on a three-game road trip.
 
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Worcester’s four-game winning streak ended on Wednesday with a 5-3 loss at Albany… At 41-21-2-3 overall, the Sharks have assured themselves of their third 40-win season in four years as a member of the AHL, the lone exception being 2007-08… Goaltender Frank Doyle has been between the pipes for three of Worcester’s last five games, giving workhorse rookie Alex Stalock – who leads the league with 3,086 minutes and 35 wins – some time off… Rookie John McCarthy (2-3-5) and second-year pro Andrew Desjardins (3-4-7) are both riding four-game scoring streaks, while defenseman Derek Joslin has a point in his last seven outings (2-7-9)… The Sharks have Friday off, host Providence on Saturday, and travel to Lowell on Sunday.