Three goals in a stretch of 2:10 spanning the second and third periods propelled the Philadelphia Phantoms to a 6-1 win over the Grand Rapids Griffins on Sunday at Van Andel Arena.
Patrick Sharp accounted for two of the goals and added a first period assist, as the Phantoms moved into a tie for first in the East Division and improved their scoring margin over their last six games overall to 16-4.
The Griffins (25-25-1-1) fell to the .500 mark for the second time this season.
Rookie R.J. Umberger gave the Phantoms the lead just 7:12 into the contest, and the visitors extended their advantage to 2-0 at the 15:20 mark, as Dennis Seidenberg rifled a shot from the blueline that found its way through a crowded slot.
Blake Sloan, playing in his 500th pro game, ended a Philly shutout streak of 148:59 early in the second frame, tipping home a Derek Meech shot. However, the Phantoms quickly reasserted their two-goal cushion during a power play, with John Slaney ripping a blast from the top of the left circle at 4:09, giving Philadelphia three goals on only six shots.
Philadelphia (31-16-2-4) blew the game open with a pair of goals 41 seconds apart late in the period. Sharp slipped a shot past Drew MacIntyre at 18:08, and Tony Voce upped the lead to 5-1 on the Phantoms’ 15th shot of the game.
Former Griffin Neil Little made 30 saves to earn his 199th career AHL victory.
Elsewhere on Sunday:
Antti Miettinen scored twice as Hamilton doubled up St. John’s, 4-2, in front of 11,296 fans at Copps Coliseum… Peter Budaj recorded 34 saves for Hershey in a 3-1 win over Syracuse… Chris Kunitz scored twice and Frederic Cassivi turned aside 37 shots as Cincinnati beat Milwaukee, 4-0… Mike Cammalleri scored his league-leading 32nd goal of the season, then netted the deciding shootout goal as Manchester beat Lowell, 2-1… John Morlang recorded a goal and an assist as Bridgeport knocked off Worcester, 4-1… Rene Bourque broke a scoreless tie 61 seconds into the third period and Michael Leighton finished with 28 saves as Norfolk shut out Hartford, 2-0… Brad Boyes had a goal and an assist and Chris Madden stopped 18 shots in his AHL season debut as Providence blanked Springfield, 3-0.