AHL Quick Hits is now the Morning Skate… Every morning, take a spin around the AHL ice with recaps and previews, news and notes, facts and figures, and the top headlines from around the American Hockey League.
W-B/SCRANTON 2, Portland 0 (WBS leads, 1-0)
WEDNESDAY’S THREE STARS:
1. Dave Gove broke a scoreless tie in the third period to propel Wilkes-Barre/Scranton to a 2-0 win in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals.
2. Goaltender John Curry pitched a 19-save shutout for the Penguins in Game 1.
3. Pirates goaltender Jean-Sebastien Aubin made 21 saves in the losing effort.
THURSDAY’S SCHEDULE (all times ET):
Game 2 –
2008 CALDER CUP PLAYOFFS:
E1-Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins vs. A3-Portland Pirates || Preview
Game 1 – Wed., May 14 – W-B/SCRANTON 2, Portland 0
Game 2 – Thu., May 15 –
Game 3 – Sun., May 18 – W-B/Scranton at
Game 4 – Tue., May 20 – W-B/Scranton at
*Game 5 – Wed., May 21 – W-B/Scranton at
*Game 6 – Fri., May 23 –
*Game 7 – Sat., May 24 –
Western Conference Finals – Series “N” (best-of-7)
W1-Chicago Wolves vs. N1-Toronto Marlies || Preview
Game 1 – Fri., May 16 –
Game 2 – Sun., May 18 –
Game 3 – Tue., May 20 –
Game 4 – Wed., May 21 –
*Game 5 – Fri., May 23 –
*Game 6 – Sun., May 25 –
*Game 7 – Tue., May 27 –
*if necessary… All times Eastern
GAME NOTES (all times ET):
Game 2 –
Fresh off a 2-0 shutout in Game 1 on Wednesday, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton hosts
PENS WIN A NAIL-BITER
Don’t let the score deceive you. Coming into Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals, all eight of the Portland Pirates’ playoff wins came by one goal. On Wednesday, they essentially lost their first. Although the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins won the game 2-0, both teams played to a draw until Dave Gove scored his second playoff goal at in the third period. Ryan Lannon added an empty-netter with 13 seconds left. Gove scored the game-winner after he made the first shot on net during a rush into the
NO GOALS, SO PIRATES’ GOAL IS TO GET A
Round One of the AHL’s Eastern Conference final series went to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins on Wednesday night. The Portland Pirates played the Pens even for the first 53 minutes of the game, but lost 2-0. Dave Gove ended a scoreless duel when he banged a rebound past goalie J.S. Aubin with left before a crowd of 4,804 at the Wachovia Arena. “When you go on the road for two games, your goal is to get a split,”
Jonathan Bombulie, Times-Shamrock Newspapers
It’s easy to paint goalie Jean-Sebastien Aubin as the villain as the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins take on his Portland Pirates in the AHL’s Eastern Conference final. After all, not only is Aubin the man standing between the home team and a trip to the Calder Cup finals, he was also involved in an oft-rehashed media controversy while he played for the Penguins in 1999. The problem is, Aubin doesn’t play the part of villain very well. Soft spoken and friendly, he was smiling, not scowling, as he walked the halls of the Wachovia Arena after the morning skate Wednesday. He remembers being booed for a little while after negative comments about Wilkes-Barre were attributed to him in a Pittsburgh newspaper in 1999, but he also recalls Penguins fans warming up to him later in his stay with the club.
As dawn broke yesterday in suburban
MARLIES GET READY TO FEAST ON WOLVES
On the surface, it would appear that AHL Western Conference final foes
POGGE’S GAME STILL MATURING
Mark Masters, National Post
As the Toronto Maple Leafs farm team continues its march through the American Hockey League playoffs, the organization’s goalie of the future continues to sit. One question that has persisted during the Toronto Marlies spirited run has been why goalie Justin Pogge, 22, has not started ahead of Scott Clemmensen. While Clemmensen has played well, many expected Pogge to be the Marlies’ starting goalie and to gain some valuable playoff experience this spring. It is the mental aspect of Pogge’s game that the goalie says is holding him back right now. “That’s a part of my game that just needs a little more maturing, just playing a little more compact and not doing as much. I just need to use my size a bit more,” Pogge said after practicing with his teammates at the Ricoh Coliseum yesterday morning.
HELPING WOLVES WIN THE CUP REMAINS KROG’S ONLY FOCUS
Tim Sassone, Daily Herald
There’s a reason why Chicago Wolves center Jason Krog was the American Hockey League’s most valuable player. When the Wolves needed him most, trailing in their Calder Cup West Division final series against
PLANS FOR NEXT TITLE RUN UNDERWAY FOR ICEHOGS
Rockford IceHogs coach Mike Haviland wrapped up the 2007-08 season Wednesday with player interviews. Team President Ryan Washatka already was eyeing 2008-09. “We’re not even 24 hours from the bittersweet ending, and we’re working on plans for next year,” Washatka said from his MetroCentre office, referring to Tuesday’s 4-1 loss in Game 7 to the Chicago Wolves. It was
GUENIN USES PLAYOFF PRACTICES TO LEARN
Chris Bradford, Beaver
So, it may have been just a pre-game skate in front of a half-filled arena. And it’s not going to show up in the official playoff stats, but Hopewell Township native Nate Guenin had to admit it was quite a thrill to pull on an NHL jersey for a playoff game – even if it was just to help warm up the Philadelphia Flyers players who would be seeing action Tuesday night against the Penguins in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals. Guenin, a defenseman for the AHL Philadelphia Phantoms, was called back up to the Flyers for the playoffs on Saturday. He enjoyed his best season in the AHL this year with 17 points and 143 penalty minutes in 77 games.
BY THE NUMBERS:
83.3 – Percentage of teams (20 of 24) that have won their conference final series after winning Game 1, since 1996… The last club to drop Game 1 and still advance to the Calder Cup Finals was
Sami Lepisto, who had 45 points in 55 AHL games with Hershey this season, scored 3:59 into overtime to five Finland a 3-2 win over the United States in quarterfinal action at the IIHF World Championships in Halifax… 2007 AHL All-Star Drew Stafford forced the extra session with a late goal for the United States.
Loui Eriksson, who led
ON THIS DATE:
ON THE AIR:
B2 Networks brings AHL action to your computer all season long with live video webcasts of every AHL game… Visit theahl.com for details.The Portland Pirates don’t have to wait long to put last night’s loss behind them: They can even up the Eastern Conference Finals with a win in Game 2 tonight (7:05 ET) in Wilkes-Barre, where the Penguins are 6-1 this postseason. The road to the Calder Cup marches on, and if you can’t make it to the rink, you can watch the action with B2 Networks’ live video webcast.