AHL Quick Hits — March 7, 2007

On Tuesday, Denis Tolpeko, Eric Meloche and Jared Ross scored 3:47 apart in the second period to send Philadelphia to a 5-2 win over Binghamton… Kip Miller had two goals and an assist and Dan Smith ended a 136-game AHL drought with his first goal since Mar. 25, 2005, in Grand Rapids’ 5-3 win over Peoria… On Monday, Randall Gelech scored twice to help San Antonio past Milwaukee, 5-2.

Mon 3/5
San Antonio 5, MILWAUKEE 2

Tue 3/6
GRAND RAPIDS 5, Peoria 3… PHILADELPHIA 5, Binghamton 2

Second-place Hartford visits first-place Manchester in an Atlantic Division showdown on Wednesday night… Since U.S. Thanksgiving, the Monarchs (30-10-2-0) and the Wolf Pack (31-10-2-0) have nearly identical records, surging to the top of the division… Manchester has won nine of its last 10 at the Verizon Wireless Arena, while Hartford has won five straight – and 14 of 16 – on the road… Jason LaBarbera, an AHL MVP with the Pack in 2003-04, has tied Mathieu Garon’s Monarchs record with 32 wins this season… Matt Moulson has tallied three goals and three assists in his last four games for Manchester… Hugh Jessiman has five goals in his last five games for Hartford… The Wolf Pack have allowed two goals or fewer in nine straight games.

More drama in the Atlantic Division playoff race as Portland hosts Worcester on Wednesday… The Pirates trail the fourth-place Sharks by four points with three games in hand, and own the edge in the season series to date at 5-1-0-2… 2007 AHL All-Star Joe Motzko has recorded seven goals and six assists in 15 games since joining Portland… Sebastien Caron is 3-1-3 in his last seven decisions in net for the Pirates… Thomas Greiss has started six consecutive contests for the Sharks, with the team earning points in five of them (3-1-0-2)… Former Pirates forward Graham Mink has tallied 10 points (6g, 4a) in his last seven games for Worcester… The Sharks’ Roy Sommer coached his 700th AHL game last Friday night vs. Providence.

Iowa kicks off a six-game road trip in Omaha on Wednesday, with the Stars two points out of a playoff spot and the Ak-Sar-Ben Knights one point off the lead in the West Division… The Knights come in with a six-game winning streak, allowing just seven goals in that span… Warren Peters has three goals in his last two games for Omaha… With Jaroslav Halak and Michael Leighton on NHL recalls, the Knights’ Curtis McElhinney leads active AHL goalies with a 2.14 GAA this season… Dan Ellis, who played one year of junior and three seasons of college hockey in Omaha, has made nine straight starts in net for Iowa… Chris Conner, who has six goals and two assists in eight games since returning from injury on Feb. 16, was recalled by the Dallas Stars on Wednesday morning.

(all times Eastern)
Wed 3/7
Albany at Lowell, 7:05… Hartford at Manchester, 7:05… Worcester at Portland, 7:05… W-B/Scranton at Norfolk, 7:15… Houston at Chicago, 8:00… Iowa at Omaha, 8:00

Thu 3/8
No games scheduled

Fri 3/9
Lowell at Albany, 7:00… Hartford at Worcester, 7:00… Philadelphia at Providence, 7:05… Binghamton at Norfolk, 7:15… W-B/Scranton at Bridgeport, 7:30… Hershey at Manchester, 7:35… Syracuse at Rochester, 7:35… Portland at Springfield, 7:35… Hamilton at Milwaukee, 8:00… Grand Rapids at Omaha, 8:00… Peoria at San Antonio, 8:00… Iowa at Manitoba, 8:30

On Tuesday night, 2005 Calder Cup champion and AHL All-Star Patrick Sharp scored twice in Chicago’s 3-0 win over Los Angeles… 2005 AHL All-Star Kari Lehtonen made 38 saves for Atlanta in a 4-2 win over Florida… On Monday, 2002 AHL All-Star Rick DiPietro made a franchise-record 56 saves in the N.Y. Islanders’ 2-1 shootout loss to the N.Y. Rangers.

— Overtime games played by the Milwaukee Admirals this season, most in the league… The AHL record for a single season is 26, held by Albany (2001-02), Rochester (2001-02) and Portland (2003-04).

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