Eastern Conference notebook

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2008 AHL All-Star goaltender Michael Leighton recorded his league-leading seventh shutout of the season in a 3-0 win at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Mar. 21… It marked the 29th shutout of Leighton’s AHL career, moving him into sole possession of sixth place all-time… Saturday’s 3-2 win at Worcester was the River Rats’ 40th victory of the season, marking the first time since the 1998-99 season (46 wins) that an Albany squad has won 40 or more games… The Rats are currently two games into a stretch of playing seven straight contests away from the Times Union Center.
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Binghamton has picked up a standings point in nine straight games (6-0-0-3), pulling the Sens within two points of Hershey for the East Division’s final playoff spot… Josh Hennessy has a goal in four straight games (4-0-4) and a point in five straight (4-1-5)… Lawrence Nycholat also has a point in five straight outings (1-4-5), and he has racked up 10 points (2-8-10) and a plus-7 rating in seven games against Rochester this season… Scott May set a new career high with two goals and three points in the B-Sens’ 7-4 win over the Amerks on Mar. 22.
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Rookie forward Colton Fretter has scored a goal in four of his last five games (6-0-6) and has totaled eight goals and nine points in 10 games since joining Bridgeport on Feb. 28… Fellow first-year pro Trevor Smith has a point in four straight games (1-4-5) and five of his last six contests (3-4-7)… The Sound Tigers, looking to return to the playoffs after a one-year absence, are five points out of the East Division’s final berth… Bridgeport plays three home games in three nights this weekend, welcoming Hershey, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, and Hartford to the Arena at Harbor Yard.
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After Wednesday’s 8-2 win at Lowell, the Wolf Pack are 19-2-0-1 on the season against the AHL’s three teams based in Massachusetts, with four games left to play… Hartford is 5-1-0-1 against the Devils, 7-1-0-0 against Springfield, and a perfect 7-0-0-0 against Worcester… Pierre-Alexandre Parenteau has notched a goal in five straight games (6-4-10), including multiple points in four straight contests… For the season, Parenteau is tied for fifth in the league with 31 goals and tied for fourth with 73 points… The Wolf Pack have clinched their 11th playoff spot in as many AHL seasons, as well as their fifth consecutive 40-win season.
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Hershey has won three straight games after going 2-9-0-0 in its previous 11 outings… Veteran goaltender Frederic Cassivi, a member of the Bears’ 2006 Calder Cup championship team, has been between the pipes for all three games of the current win streak… Alexandre Giroux had a four-game scoring streak snapped on Wednesday in Norfolk, but he has totaled 19 points (9-10-19) in 15 games since rejoining the Bears on Feb. 26… The Bears host Hamilton on Saturday for the first time since Games 1 and 2 of last June’s Calder Cup Finals.
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Lowell has dropped six of its last seven games and has been outscored 31-12 during the drought… Nick Palmieri became the youngest player to skate with the Devils when he made his debut on Mar. 21 against Norfolk at 18 years, eight months, and nine days… The Devils have scored eight of their last 11 goals (72.7%) on the power play, spanning five games… Brad Mills recorded his first AHL point of the season with an assist on Sunday against Hershey… Mills also posted one helper in eight games for the Devils last season after concluding a four-year career at Yale University.
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Manchester has won three straight games for the first time since Jan. 11-13, pushing the Monarchs three points up on Springfield for the Atlantic Division’s fourth and final playoff spot… Teddy Purcell currently boasts a four-game scoring streak (2-5-7) and has registered a point in 45 of 60 AHL games this season… He leads all AHL rookies with 73 points overall (20-53-73), and teammate Brian Boyle ranks second with 55 points (26-29-55)… The Monarchs play five of their next six games against teams currently out of a playoff spot before finishing the schedule with three straight against league-leading Providence.
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Center Dana Tyrell became the youngest player in Admirals history when he suited up against Lowell on Mar. 21 at 18 years, 10 months, and 28 days old… Tampa Bay’s second-round draft pick in 2007, Tyrell netted an assist in each of his first two professional games… Radek Smolenak’s first-period power play goal in that game against the Devils snapped Norfolk’s 0-for-20 slide on the man-advantage… The Admirals, who will miss the playoffs for the first time in the team’s eight-year history, have been outshot in each of their last 17 games.
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Philadelphia has not won consecutive games since a four-game winning streak from Feb. 9-15… The Phantoms, who have led the East Division since Oct. 7, currently hold a one-point edge on Wilkes-Barre/Scranton for the top spot… Goaltender Michael Teslak and defenseman Jason DeSantis both made their professional debuts for the Phantoms on Mar. 22 in Hershey; Both players have signed AHL deals for the 2008-09 campaign… Pete Zingoni has registered a point in six of his last seven games (2-5-7).
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Portland, which has dropped its last two games, has not suffered a three-game winless skid since Oct. 12-14 (0-3-0-0)… The Pirates’ 25 home wins this season (25-9-1-1) are tied with Chicago for the league lead… Prior to falling to Manchester on Mar. 22, Portland had won seven consecutive games at the Cumberland County Civic Center, one shy of tying the club’s franchise record of eight straight wins, accomplished in the 1993-94 and 1999-00 seasons… Bobby Ryan ranks third in AHL rookie scoring with 49 points (21-28-49).
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The Bruins (48-16-3-3) have cracked the 100-point plateau for the first time since the 2002-03 campaign, when they totaled 104 points… Providence had 120 points on its way to a Calder Cup championship in the 1998-99 campaign… After playing 12 of its past 16 games on the road, the B’s will conclude the regular season by playing seven of 10 at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center… All 10 of Providence’s remaining games are against divisional opponents… Matt Hendricks has a point in three straight (2-4-6) and five of his last six games (3-7-10), which includes four multiple-point efforts.
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Rookie Viacheslav Trukhno has registered a point in 12 straight games (8-8-16) for the Falcons… Trukhno had totaled 16 points in his first 43 games this season prior to the run… 2008 AHL All-Star Rob Schremp has tallied a point in nine of his last 10 games (5-7-12)… Schremp continues to lead Springfield in scoring and is tied for eighth in the AHL with 66 points (19-47-66) in 69 games… The Falcons are three points out of a playoff spot and will play six of their last nine games on the road, where they are 10-18-2-4 this season.
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Wilkes-Barre/Scranton is an even 2-2-0-0 thus far on its five-game homestand, which concludes on Friday against Hamilton… The Penguins will then visit Bridgeport on Saturday… Rookie John Curry, who is 20-9-2 on the season is the fourth Penguins goaltender to record 20 wins in a campaign… Current Pittsburgh Penguins netminders Dany Sabourin and Marc-Andre Fleury, along with current Springfield goalie Jeff Deslauriers, are the previous 20-game winners… Ben Lovejoy, who had one goal in his previous 61 games, tallied the game-winner in last Saturday’s 3-2 win over Providence.
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2008 AHL All-Star Mike Iggulden has a three-game scoring streak (2-2-4), which has given him a career-high 59 points (24-35-59) for the season… Iggulden is six goals shy of his career high of 30, set last year with the Sharks… Defenseman Dennis Packard currently has a season-high five-game scoring streak (3-2-5) and boasts a career-high 10 goals and 24 points for the season… Ashton Rome has a goal in his last two games after going 20 straight games without scoring… The Sharks get their last crack at Hartford on Friday, as they will travel to Connecticut’s capital showing an 0-7-0-0 record against the Wolf Pack this season.