Eastern Conference notebook

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Albany’s 4-3 win at Bridgeport pushed the River Rats five games over .500 for the season at 15-10-0-2… It is the first time that Albany has been five or more games above the break-even mark since finishing the 1998-99 season at 46-26-6-2, a span of 667 games… Goaltender Michael Leighton leads the league and has set a new franchise record with seven shutouts already this season… Keith Aucoin has a point in four straight games (2-4-6) and eight of his last nine (4-9-13).
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With a shorthanded goal in two of their three games last weekend, the Senators now lead the AHL with nine on the season… Center Justin Mapletoft has notched a team-leading three shorthanded goals, half of his six total goals (6-2-8)… Defenseman Lawrence Nycholat needs four more assists to reach 200 for his AHL career… Nycholat ranks first on the team with 15 assists and second with 18 points… Josh Hennessy has three goals in his last two games (3-0-3), pushing him into a tie for second on the team with eight this season (8-9-17).
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Joe Rullier (1-3-4) and Tim Jackman (1-3-4) are both on four-game scoring streaks for the Sound Tigers… Bridgeport is just 3-7-0-0 in its last 10 games… The Sound Tigers are in the midst of playing nine of 11 games at home, with the only exceptions being a game in Providence on Friday and a trip up to Hartford on Dec. 21… Bridgeport went 2-0-0-2 against the Bruins in four meetings last season.
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Wednesday’s 6-1 loss to Houston was the Wolf Pack’s most lopsided defeat since dropping an 8-2 decision to the Lowell Lock Monsters on Jan. 27, 2006… It also ended Hartford’s 7-0-0-1 run, marking its first regulation loss since Nov. 21, when the Pack fell to Providence by a 3-2 final… The Wolf Pack’s power play is 8-for-21 (38.0%) in four games against Worcester this season, all wins… Greg Moore notched his first pro hat trick and a career-high four points (3-1-4) in the club’s 7-1 victory over the Sharks on Dec. 8.
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Friday’s game in Norfolk will mark the end of a stretch of 21 straight games for the Bears against divisional opponents… The North Division’s Toronto Marlies will be in town on Saturday, marking Hershey’s first game against a non-divisional foe since hosting Rochester on Oct. 20… The Bears will not square off against an Atlantic Division team until Jan. 2, when they travel to Worcester to play the Sharks… Kyle Wilson has a four-game scoring streak (1-3-4).
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Petr Vrana’s assist in Wednesday’s 6-5 shootout loss at Providence gave him a point in eight of his last nine games (2-10-12)… Vrana leads the Devils overall with 19 assists and 24 points through 26 games… Noah Clarke, who paces the team with 11 goals this season (11-7-18), is just two away from the 100th tally of his pro career… Lowell is winless in four straight outings (0-3-0-1) and just 3-10-2-2 in its last 17 contests… The Devils open a three-game homestand on Friday against Albany and welcome Providence on Saturday.
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The Monarchs have the league’s best home power play, converting on 32.8% of their opportunities (21 of 64)… Fourteen of Manchester’s 24 games thus far have been decided by one goal, with the Monarchs posting a 7-4-2-1 record in those games… Manchester is just 2-7-0-0 in two and three-goal games combined… Rookie Teddy Purcell, who leads the league with 25 assists and 33 points, has notched a point in 19 of 24 games this season.
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The Admirals have won four straight home games and six of their last seven at the Scope… They are at home this weekend with tilts against division-rivals Hershey and Philadelphia… Overall, Norfolk is in the midst of playing 18 straight games against East Division competition… 2007 AHL All-Star goaltender Karri Ramo, who has missed time with an ankle injury, stopped 38 of 39 shots on Dec. 7 at Philadelphia to earn his first victory as an Admiral… Adam Henrich (5-6-11) and Norm Milley (2-4-6) are both currently riding five-game scoring streaks.
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Philadelphia snapped its first three-game losing streak of the season with a 3-2 victory at Hershey on Dec. 8… The Phantoms have scored a power play goal in seven straight games and in 23 of their 25 games overall this season… They rank second in the league with a 23.5% conversion rate (23.5%)… Ryan Potulny posted a goal and two assists in the Phantoms’ two games last weekend, then was recalled to the Flyers and notched an assist in their 8-2 victory over Pittsburgh on Tuesday.
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The Pirates’ 2-0 loss in Albany on Dec. 7 was the first time they have been blanked this season… Portland followed that game with two consecutive wins, including a 5-4 win at league-leading Providence the following night… The Pirates are 2-2-0-0 overall on a five-game road trip, which concludes with a game at Manchester on Friday… Ryan Dingle scored his first professional goal as part of Portland’s 3-2 win at Bridgeport on Dec. 9.
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The Bruins lead the league at 20-4-2-0 and have still yet to lose consecutive games in regulation this season… The only time they lost two straight in any manner was from Nov. 25-28, which included defeats in regulation and overtime… Pascal Pelletier is tied for second in the AHL in both goals (15) and points (32), and he currently has a six-game point-scoring streak (7-5-12)… Brett Skinner has a five-game scoring streak (0-6-6), while Matt Lashoff sports a four-game streak (2-4-6)… Providence is 6-2-1-0 on its 10-game homestand, which concludes on Friday against Bridgeport.
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Leading scorer Rob Schremp (8-21-29) has notched a point in 11 of his last 12 games (5-13-18), and T.J. Kemp has one in five of his last six outings (2-4-6)… Ben Simon has registered five points over his last two outings (2-3-5), including a three-point showing (1-2-3) in the Falcons’ 5-2 win over Lowell on Dec. 8… That victory improved Springfield to 4-0-0-0 against the Devils this season… Goaltender Jeff Deslauriers leads the league with 13 wins on the season (13-5-3).
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Dennis Bonvie appeared in his 250th game with the Penguins on Dec. 7 vs. Hershey… Dec. 8 at Norfolk was his 251st game, tying him with Colby Armstrong for seventh place on the team’s all-time leaderboard… The Penguins own the league’s worst power play, converting on just 12.9% of their chances (19-for-147)… Leading scorer Jeff Taffe (12-6-18) has a four-game scoring streak (3-2-5)… Wilkes-Barre/Scranton plays three road games in as many nights this weekend, visiting Worcester, Albany, and Philadelphia.
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The Sharks sit last in the Atlantic Division with 21 points (8-10-1-2), but they have played a league-low 21 games thus far… Worcester has seven games in hand on division-rivals Hartford and Springfield, five in hand on Providence, Portland, and Lowell, and three games in hand on Manchester… Leading scorer Mike Iggulden (11-12-23), who was held scoreless in the Sharks’ 7-1 loss to Hartford on Dec. 8, has yet to go consecutive games without a point this season… Worcester plays its first three-games-in-three-nights stretch this weekend, hosting Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and Houston before visiting Manchester.