Eastern Conference notebook

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Albany’s current eight-game winning streak is its longest since another eight-game run in Feb. 1998… The current streak is one shy of the AHL season high of nine straight wins, set by both Peoria and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton… The River Rats now sit just five points back of Philadelphia for first place in the East Division… Albany has not captured a division crown since the 1997-98 campaign… Kiel McLeod has notched a goal in three of his first four AHL games this season for the River Rats… Albany hosts Binghamton on Saturday at the Glens Falls Civic Center, where they are 0-5-0-0 in five “home” games spanning last spring’s playoffs and two earlier games this season.
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Binghamton’s 4-1 loss to Albany on Wednesday marked its third straight loss and dropped the Senators back to the .500 mark (27-27-5-4) for the first time since Jan. 9, when they were 16-16-4-2… Denis Hamel continues to lead the Senators in goals (28) and points (47) in 50 games this season… Hamel’s 13 power play goals rank fourth in the league… The B-Sens’ travel to the Glens Falls Civic Center on Saturday to take on Albany… It will mark their second game of the season in a venue other than a usual home rink, as the Sens played a home game against Toronto at the Utica Memorial Auditorium on Jan. 25.
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Bridgeport won three games in three nights last weekend despite not scoring more than three goals in any of the contests… The Sound Tigers are 8-2-0-1 in their last 11 games and sit two points out of a playoff spot in the East Division… Tim Jackman has scored three goals over his last three games, with two of them coming shorthanded… Steve Regier has registered a point in four of his last five outings (2-3-5)… Goaltender Mike Morrison is 5-0-1 over his last six starts… The Sound Tigers play back-to-back games this weekend in Portland, against whom they are 1-3-0-0 this season and 9-15-0 all-time.
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After scoring six goals in a 6-2 win over Norfolk on Feb. 29, the Wolf Pack totaled just one goal in a pair of divisional losses to Manchester and Portland the next two nights… It marked the first time Hartford lost consecutive games since Jan. 4-5; The club hasn’t lost three straight in regulation all season… Captain Andrew Hutchinson registered five points (1-4-5) in the 6-2 win over the Admirals, marking the first five-point effort by a defenseman in Hartford’s 11-year history… Hutchinson has 15 points (6-9-15) over his last nine games… Goaltender David LeNeveu made 30 saves in his Wolf Pack debut, a tough-luck 2-1 loss to Manchester on Mar. 1.
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After winning the first game of its nine-game road trip, Hershey has dropped four straight and scored just six goals over the four contests… The four-game losing streak is the Bears’ longest of the campaign, eclipsing their three-game skid to open the season… The New England portion of Hershey’s trip continues with weekend games in Manchester, Springfield, and Portland… Alexandre Giroux, who led Hershey with 42 goals last season, lit the lamp in three of his first four games back with the Bears last week (3-1-4).
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Lowell has held the opposition to three goals or fewer in 13 of its last 15 contests… Goaltender Dave Caruso is 4-1-0 with a 1.80 GAA since first suiting up for the Devils on Feb. 16… His only blemish is a 2-1 overtime loss to Albany on Feb. 23 in which he stopped 37 of 39 shots… Benoit Mondou’s six-game scoring streak (4-5-9) ended in Wednesday’s 4-1 victory over Hershey… Ivan Khomutov has a point in three straight contests (2-3-5)… Lowell’s penalty kill is clicking at 93.1% (27-for-29) over its last eight games.
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The Monarchs, winners of their last two games, have not had a three-game winning streak since Jan. 11-13… Manchester is two points back of Springfield for the Atlantic Division’s final playoff spot and holds a game in hand on the Falcons… Goaltender Kevin Quick, a native of Milford, Conn., made 37 saves in Manchester’s 2-1 win at Hartford on Mar. 1… 2008 AHL All-Star Gabe Gauthier notched his third three-point night of the season with two goals and a helper in the Monarchs’ 5-2 win over Springfield on Sunday.
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Norfolk wrapped up its nine-game road trip at 3-5-0-1 after posting a 4-0 win at Worcester on Wednesday… Goaltender Marc Denis had allowed 20 goals in his last four games prior to pitching a 32-save shutout of the Sharks… Denis picked up the ninth assist of his pro career on Feb. 29 in Hartford… Kyle Wanvig, who leads the Admirals in goals (19) and points (47), has been held off the scoresheet in a season-high six straight games… Second-year pro Bracken Kearns has lit the lamp in each of his last two games (2-1-3).
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Sunday’s 2-1 loss at Albany marked the first time this season that the Phantoms lost after taking a lead into the third period (24-1-0-0)… That game was also the first time this season that Philadelphia was not granted a power play opportunity… Boyd Kane has a three-game scoring streak (1-3-4) and a point in six of his last seven outings (4-6-10)… Ryan Potulny notched his third two-plus goal game of the season in the Phantoms’ 3-1 win at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Mar. 1.
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Goaltender Jean-Sebastien Aubin pitched a 38-save shutout as Portland downed Hartford, 3-0, on Sunday… It was Aubin’s first AHL appearance since the 2005-06 season, when he went 19-18-2 in 46 games for Toronto… The shutout was Aubin’s first since Apr. 1, 2006, when he blanked Buffalo as a member of the Maple Leafs… Jason King boasts a four-game scoring streak (1-6-7) for the Pirates… Bobby Ryan had his nine-game scoring streak (5-8-13) snapped in Sunday’s victory over Hartford… Third-year pro Stephen Dixon has yet to miss a game in his career, suiting up for 244 consecutive contests, including playoffs… He has played all 62 games this year.
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Providence went just 1-3-1-0 on its five-game western road trip and is currently on its first four-game winless skid of the season (0-3-1-0)… The Bruins, who rank second in the league with an average of 3.49 goals per game, have just five tallies in their last four games combined… Rookie Aaron Slattengren found the scoresheet in four of Providence’s five games on the trip (2-2-4)… Leading scorer Pascal Pelletier had just one point, an assist, on the trip… Pelletier is on a six-game goal drought for the first time since the first six games of the season, but he’s still tied for third in the league with 28 markers on the campaign.
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Springfield plays five of its next six games at the MassMutual Center before closing the season by playing eight of 12 on the road… The Falcons are 5-15-2-4 this season in all opposing buildings except for Lowell’s Tsongas Arenas, where they finished a perfect 5-0-0-0… Viacheslav Trukhno is currently riding a three-game scoring streak (2-1-3)… Jacob Micflikier returned to the Falcons’ lineup on Mar. 1 vs. Portland after missing 26 games with a broken leg suffered in a Dec. 29 morning skate… Jean-Francois Jacques has a team-high six goals and 11 points in seven games against Lowell, whom the Falcons host on Friday.
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The Penguins played their 700th regular-season game in franchise history this past Sunday, taking a 4-2 win at Binghamton… After Tuesday’s 3-2 triumph at first-place Philadelphia, the Penguins are 324-272-48-37-20 (W-L-T-OTL-SOL) in 701 all-time contests… Connor James failed to convert on a penalty shot attempt on Feb. 27 against Syracuse, dropping Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s all-time success rate in penalty shots to just 6.25% (1-for-16)… Rico Fata notched the Penguins’ only penalty shot goal in team history on Jan. 20, 2006, at Binghamton.
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2008 AHL All-Star Mike Iggulden tallied his third career hat trick and added an assist in Worcester’s 5-4 win over Norfolk on Sunday… The three goals and four points were both the most by any Sharks player this season… Iggulden’s five-game scoring streak (4-5-9) was snapped in the Sharks’ 4-0 loss in Wednesday’s rematch with the Admirals… Worcester had been 8-for-24 (33.3%) on the power play over its last four games prior to going 0-for-6 in Wednesday’s loss… The Sharks have played 59 games to this point, tied with Lake Erie, Chicago, and Houston for the fewest in the AHL.