BIG FINISH NOT ENOUGH FOR PENGUINS
MANCHESTER, NH– The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins threw a scare into the Manchester Monarchs, scoring twice in the final 1:31 of play, but dropping a 3-2 decision at the Verizon Wireless Arena on Friday night. The loss dropped the Penguins record to 3-2-0-1 on the year, while the Monarchs raised their mark to 2-3-0-0.
The loss snapped a four-game point streak for the Penguins, who had won their previous two games.
The Penguins outshot the Monarchs, 11-4, in the opening period, but it was Manchester that cracked the scoresheet first, as Gabe Gauthier beat Adam Berkhoel at the 16:12 mark for the only goal of the opening frame.
Berkheol was solid in the second period, stopping all 13 shots he faced. But Jonathan Quick was just as good in the Monarchs' net, snuffing 18 shots through the first 40 minutes of play.
Viatcheslav Voynov's netted his first AHL goal nine minutes into the third period, and Alec Martinez followed with his first career goal six and a half minutes later.
Quick held the Penguins at bay for the first 58-plus minutes, before New Hampshire native Ben Lovejoy fired home his second of the season to spoil the shutout. That goal came with Berkhoel pulled for an extra attacker, as did Jeff Taffe's tally with 48 seconds left. That goal was Taffe's fourth since rejoining the team from Pittsburgh, and was assisted by Chris Minard and Janne Pesonen, both of whom extended their point streaks to six games.
The Penguins finish up their New England swing Saturday night in Portland, where they will face the Pirates in a rematch of the Eastern Conference Finals.