Penguins Held Off By Crunch
Craig notches lone tally for W-B/Scranton
WILKES-BARRE, Pa. – Antero Niittymaki stopped all but one of the 36 shots he faced as the Syracuse Crunch edged the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, 2-1, on Saturday night at Mohegan Sun Arena as Casey Plaza.
With the game still scoreless midway through the second period, Penguins goaltender Scott Munroe went to the locker room with an injury after making a save on Brandon McMillan’s wraparound shot. Patrick Killeen, assigned from the Wheeling Nailers (ECHL) yesterday, would come into the game for his first appearance of the season with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.
Skating on a man-advantage soon thereafter, the Crunch drew first blood on their first shot on the back-up netminder. Working down the left-wing boards, defenseman Matt Smaby sent a perfect pass across the crease that Dan Sexton tapped in at 10:34.
The Penguins would answer back less than four minutes later with their own power play opportunity. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton captain Ryan Craig camped out in front of Niittymaki and went diving to the ice to sweep in his own rebound chance and his seventh goal of the season.
The Crunch were able to sneak one by Killeen and retake their lead with just 7.5 seconds left in the second frame. Patrick Maroon found the top left corner of the net with a bullet wrist shot from the right circle that made the score 2-1.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton outshot Syracuse 14-6 in the third period and 36-19 overall, but could not gather the equalizer.
Killeen suffered the loss as he stopped 9 shots out of 11 in 35:46 of relief. The Penguins were 1-for-4 on the power play and 3-for-4 on the penalty kill.
The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins battle the Norfolk Admirals on Sunday, February 26 at 3:05PM. For tickets or more information, call the Penguins at (570) 208-PENS or visit www.wbspenguins.com
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