SESTITO’S THREE POINTS HELP PENGUINS DEFEAT BEARS, 5-1

WILKES-BARRE, Pa. – Tom Sestito led the way for the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins in the latest chapter of their rivalry with the Hershey Bears, tallying three points to lead the Pens to a 5-1 victory on Friday night at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza.

Sestito scored two goals and added an assist on Teddy Blueger’s game-winning goal as part of his first three-point outing since Oct. 11, 2008.  Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (23-7-3-0) maintained its league-best record with the team’s second straight win to start 2017.

It didn’t take too long for Sestito to get on the scoresheet, as he and Blueger set one another up for goals just nineteen seconds apart at 6:48 and 6:57 of the first period.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton struck for a third time to start the second frame, as Garrett Wilson grabbed a loose puck in the slot on a botched breakout attempt. Wilson’s goal – his eighth of the campaign – was his 20th point on the year, and also led to Hershey replacing starting goalie Vítek Vaněček with Joe Cannata three minutes into the second period.

Sestito soon struck again by popping a puck in the crease into the right side of Hershey’s net at 6:21 of the middle frame, making it 4-0.

The Penguins’ point run kept rolling when Jake Guentzel grabbed his league-leading 19th goal of the season as he tipped in a shot from the blue line from David Warsofsky.

With 11 minutes left to play, Hershey nixed Casey DeSmith’s chance at the shutout with a goal by Darren Dietz. Dietz’s tally may have foiled the rookie goalie’s bid for a clean sheet, but was all the offense the visitors could muster.

By the end of the contest, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton had four players put up multi-point performances, including Sestito (2G-1A), Blueger (1G-1A), Wilson (1G-1A) and David Warsofsky (0G-2A).

The Penguins’ penalty kill was perfect throughout the contest, killing all five power plays it faced to maintain their Eastern Conference-leading penalty kill.

DeSmith finished the game having made 26 saves for his ninth win of the season. Vaněček made eight stops on 11 shots faced, and Cannata recorded 17 saves on 19 bids thrown his way.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s next game is tomorrow, Saturday, Jan. 7, against the Binghamton Senators. Saturday’s contest is also Star Wars Night. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton will wear specialty Star Wars-themed jerseys during the game that will be auctioned off to benefit the Ronald McDonald House Charities of NEPA.

Individual game tickets for tomorrow night’s game and all Penguins home games, are available at the Mohegan Sun Arena box office, online at TicketMaster.com, or by calling 800-745-3000.

Penguins ticket packages, including 22-game12-game, and 10-voucher flex packs, are available directly through the Penguins offices by calling (570) 208-7367.

NOTE:  Prior to the game, the Penguins announced that they and Reid Gardiner had mutually agreed to release the rookie forward.  He will report to the Western Hockey League for the second half of the season.

PITTSBURGH ASSIGNS THREE TO WBS

Chad Ruhwedel

The Pittsburgh Penguins have re-assigned defensemen Chad Ruhwedel and David Warsofsky, and goaltender Tristan Jarry, to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins of the American Hockey League, it was announced Sunday by executive vice president and general manager Jim Rutherford.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton finished the 2016 portion of the AHL schedule with a record of 21-7-3-0, good for 45 points and a .726 winning percentage – the top mark in the league.

The Penguins play three games on home ice this week – Tuesday, January 3 vs. Hartford; Friday, January 6 vs. Hershey; and Saturday, January 7 vs. Binghamton.

Individual game tickets for Tuesday night’s game and all Penguins home games, are available at the Mohegan Sun Arena box office, online at TicketMaster.com, or by calling 800-745-3000.

Penguins ticket packages, including 22-game12-game, and 10-voucher flex packs, are available directly through the Penguins offices by calling (570) 208-7367.

PENGUINS FOUR-GOAL GAMES

Oskar Sundqvist joined some elite company on Saturday night, becoming just the third Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins player to record four goals in a game.  But Sundqvist’s hat trick plus one came under different circumstances than the first two times the feat was accomplished.
OCTOBER 5, 2005 – Erik Christensen wasted no time in opening his scoring account, picking up four goals and leading the Penguins to an 8-1 win in the season opener against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers.

This outcome of the game was never in doubt, as Matt Hussey opened the scoring at 2:58 of the first frame, before Christensen got on a roll.  The second-year pro recorded the next two Pens goals, and completed the hat trick before the game was halfway over.  He topped things off with his fourth of the night at 13:36 of the third period to finish off the night’s scoring.

Christensen’s first three tallies came against Wade Dubielewicz, who was eventually chased from the game following Tomas Surovy’s second goal of the game – the Penguins’ sixth of the night – at 8:11 of the second period.  Chris Madden was victimized for Christensen’s record-setting goal.

Christensen went on to record 20 more goals for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton during the season, and finished second on the team with 46 points (24+22) in just 48 regular season games.  He also saw significant playing time with the Pittsburgh Penguins that season, recording 13 points (6+7) in 33 games with the NHL club.

A dangerous force in shootouts (he’s tied for first on the team’s all-time list with 11 successful attempts), Christensen recorded 50 goals and 97 points in 141 games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton during parts of three seasons.  He appeared in 387 NHL games with Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Anaheim, the New York Rangers and Minnesota Wild, posting 163 points (68+95).  He has spent the past five seasons playing in Europe, and is currently tied for the team lead with 10 goals for HV71 Jonkoping in Sweden (as of December 12, 2016).

FEBRUARY 16, 2007 – Jean-Francois Jacques didn’t need to score four goals against the Binghamton Senators to secure a win.  His tally 1:58 into the game provided all the offense the team would need thanks to a 17-save performance by Jeff Drouin-Deslauriers.  But the Edmonton Oilers prospect tacked on three more goals en route to a 7-0 shutout of the I-81 rivals.

Jacques spaced out his first two goals, scoring his second with just 18 ticks left in the second period to put the Penguins up 3-0 (Rob Schremp had a goal sandwiched between the two scores).  He completed his hat trick 23 seconds into the third period, then finished off his four-goal performance with 6:14 to play in the game.

Dan Carcillo and Jonathan Filewich also netted goals in the game against Jeff Glass, who stopped 31 of 38 shots he saw.

Jacques added just one more goal in nine further games with the club after his big night, and finished the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton portion of his career with 27 points (10+17) in 29 total games.

The Montreal native appeared in 309 AHL games with the six teams between 2005 and 2014, recording 187 points (89+98).  He also suited up in 166 games with Edmonton and Anaheim in the NHL, posting 17 points (9+8).  Like Christensen, Jacques is also currently plying his trade overseas, and has appeared in all 27 of Ingolstadt ERC’s games in Germany this season.

DECEMBER 10, 2016 – While the first two four-goal games came in Penguins blowouts, the third featured the hat trick hero providing a much needed spark.

The Hershey Bears jumped out a 2-0 lead 12:11 into the game.  It looked like the Bears, who posted a 5-2 victory on the same ice the night before, were steering this game in a similar direction.

But that’s when Sundqvist changed things.

The second-year pro picked up a loose puck in the slot and waisted home his eighth goal of the season at 16:59 of the first, tying the team lead for goals in the process.

His second goal came almost midway through the game off of a Josh Archibald rebound, and tied the contest at 2-2.

Jake Guentzel followed that goal up with his ninth of the season 29 seconds later, giving the Penguins their first regular season lead against the Bears in five contests this season.

Sundqvist redirected a Kevin Porter shot for his third of the game just two and a half minutes later, and picked up his fourth goal in style with a breakaway tally early in the third period.

The Swedish sniper may have led the scoring attack but, unlike Christensen and Jacques, Sundqvist did not record the game-winning goal in the 6-2 victory (that was credited to Guentzel).  But it’s safe to say that the Penguins wouldn’t have picked up the win without his record-tying effort.

The Penguins’ next home game is Friday, Dec. 16 as they’ll face-off against the Rochester Americans for the first and only time at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza this season. The contest is also an Eyewitness News Fan Friday, with $14 lower bowl tickets, select draft beers for just $2 from 6:00-7:30 p.m., and a post-game autograph session with two Penguins players.

Individual game tickets for tomorrow night’s game and all Penguins home games, are available at the Mohegan Sun Arena box office, online at TicketMaster.com, or by calling 800-745-3000.

Penguins ticket packages, including 22-game12-game, and 10-voucher flex packs, are available directly through the Penguins offices by calling (570) 208-7367.

SUNDQVIST TIES TEAM RECORD FOR GOALS IN A GAME IN PENS WIN

WILKES-BARRE, Pa. – Oskar Sundqvist tied the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins franchise record for most goals in a single game, tallying four in a 6-2, come-from-behind win over the Hershey Bears at the Mohegan Sun Arena on Saturday night.

Sundqvist became the third Penguins skater to tally four goals in a game, matching the mark previously set by Erik Christensen (October 5, 2005 vs. Bridgeport) and  Jean-Francois Jacques (February 16, 2007 vs. Binghamton).

Similar to Friday night’s contest, the Bears jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first period behind goals from Christen Djoos and Chandler Stephenson.

Sundqvist pulled one back for the Pens and tallied his first of the four with three minutes left in the opening frame.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton took advantage of Hershey’s untimely line-change halfway through the second, allowing Sundqvist to net his second of the night tying the contest.

Jake Guentzel followed up Sundqvist’s effort with a goal of his own – his second on the weekend –  just 29 seconds later to give the Penguins the 3-2 lead.

Sundqvist completed his hat trick at the 12:27 mark of the second, deflecting Kevin Porter’s shot from the slot to increase the Penguins lead to 4-2.
His impressive play continued into the start of the final frame, scoring his fourth of the contest at the 3:36 mark.

Tom Kostopoulos added the sixth and final goal late in the third for his seventh goal of the season.

Casey DeSmith had a perfect final two periods, and saved 21 of 23 shots he faced overall.  Joe Cannata stopped 30 of the 36 shots that came his way.

The Penguins’ next game is Sunday afternoon, when they face off with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers in Connecticut. Puck drop is scheduled for 5:00 p.m.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s next home game is Friday, December 16 where they host the Rochester Americans. Puck drop for that contest is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. Penguins ticket packages, including 22-game12-game, and 10-voucher flex packs, are available directly through the Penguins offices by calling (570) 208-7367.

PENGUINS FALL TO BEARS, 5-2

WILKES-BARRE, Pa. – Jake Guentzel recorded two points (1G-1A) in his first game back from Pittsburgh, but the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins dropped a 5-2 decision to the Hershey Bears on Friday night at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza.

The Bears jumped out to a 2-0 lead on goals from Nathan Walker and Chandler Stephenson coming 1:31 apart late in the opening frame.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton capitalized on the team’s first power play of the game in the final minutes of the first period. Guentzel rifled a one-timer from the high slot that beat Bears goaltender Vítek Vaněček top-shelf with 1:12 left in the period, cutting the Bears’ advantage in half.

Zach Sanford, who assisted on Walker’s opening goal, picked up his second point of the contest at 14:30 of the second, finding the back of the net off of a nice string of passes from Walker and Brad Malone.

Guentzel added to his team-leading point total with an assist on Jean-Sébastien Dea’s eighth goal of the season, a wrist shot that beat Vaněček to his glove side 2:44 into the third period. Dea tied Guentzel for the most goals on the Penguins with that tally.

However, Hershey responded just 44 seconds later, forcing a turnover in Wilkes-Barre’s defensive zone which allowed former Penguin Zach Sill to snap in a Ryan Bourque feed for his fourth goal of the season.

Garret Mitchell sealed the victory for the Bears, skating in on the rush and firing a wrist shot past Tristan Jarry’s blocker with just under five minutes left in the final period.

Jarry stopped 17 of the 22 shots he faced on the night, while Vaněček saved 26 out of 28.

The two teams will face off again Saturday night at the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. Individual game tickets for tomorrow night’s game and all Penguins home  games, are available at the Mohegan Sun Arena box office, online at TicketMaster.com, or by calling 800-745-3000.

Penguins ticket packages, including 22-game12-game, and 10-voucher flex packs, are available directly through the Penguins offices by calling (570) 208-7367.

PREVIEW: PENS vs BEARS – DECEMBER 9

Hershey vs Penguins

 

The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins and Hershey Bears meet in a matchup of heated rivals and AHL leaders. The Penguins are currently tied with the Bears for the most points (31) in the league this season, with Wilkes-Barre holding a slight lead in the Atlantic Division standings via points percentage. Friday night’s game is the fourth meeting between the teams this season, and the first in NEPA. The Penguins have a 2-1-0-0 mark against the Bears so far this season, with both victories coming in overtime.


DATE:  Friday, December 9, 2016
TIME:  7:05pm
PLACE:  Mohegan Sun Arena
WATCH:  AHLLive.com
LISTEN:  WILK News Radio (103.1) | bit.ly/WBSWILK
TICKETS:  Mohegan Sun Arena box office or 570-208-7367

ABOUT THE OPPONENT

RECORD 13-4-4-1 (31 pts) | Second in Atlantic Division

TEAM LEADERS

GOALS  Christian Thomas 11
ASSISTS  Travis Boyd 15
POINTS  Travis Boyd 21
PIM  Tyler Lewington 63
WINS  Joe Cannata 8
GAA  Vitek Vanecek 2.10

WHO’S HOT:  Forward TRAVIS BOYD carries a seven-game point streak (4+6=10) into this weekend’s action. Boyd scored four goals in a three-game span from November 26-December 3. He ranks ninth overall in the AHL with 21 points (6+15) while his 15 assists are tied for sixth.

NEWS AND NOTES:CHRIS BOURQUE is two points shy of 600 for his AHL career…The Bears have scored the first goal of the game 15 times this season (most in the AHL) and are 11-0-3-1 in those games…Former Penguins forward ZACH SILL hit the century mark last Sunday, notching an empty net goal against Syracuse for his 100th AHL point.

ABOUT THE PENGUINS

RECORD  14-4-3-0 (31 pts) | First in Atlantic Division

TEAM LEADERS

GOALS  Jake Guentzel, Oskar Sundqvist, J.S. Dea  7
ASSISTS  Jake Guentzel, Tom Kostopoulos  10
POINTS  Jake Guentzel  17
PIM  Patrick McGrath  39
WINS  Tristan Jarry  9
GAA  Casey DeSmith  1.82

WHO’S HOT: Captain TOM KOSTOPOULOS has five points (0+5) in his past three games, and has eight points (2+6) in his past seven contests.

NEWS AND NOTES: The next time CHAD RUHWEDEL hits the ice, he will be appearing in his 200th AHL game… DOMINIK SIMON has four goals this season, and three of those are game-winning tallies. He’s tied for first in the league with that total…Tristan Jarry is tied for their in the league with nine wins this season…CASEY DeSMITH is the only net minder to play at least 420 minutes this season and not suffer a regulation loss…TEDDY BLUEGER and TOM SESTITO could both make their Wilkes-Barre/Scranton season debuts this weekend after being reassigned to the team by the Pittsburgh Penguins this week.

SESTITO SET TO MAKE WBS SEASON DEBUT VERSUS BEARS

The rivalry between the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins and the Hershey Bears is always intense.

Insert Tom Sestito and Liam O’Brien into the equation, and the intensity level skyrockets.

Sestito, who began the 2016-17 season with the Pittsburgh Penguins and was assigned to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Saturday, figures to make his NEPA debut when the Pens and Bears face off in a two-game tilt at the Mohegan Sun Arena this weekend.

Sestito and O’Brien engaged in a war of words online last spring, as well as a few memorable matchups on the ice in both the regular season and playoffs.

So what can we expect from Tito’s return?

 

“I’m excited to be down here and get playing in some games,” Sestito said.  “I’m looking forward to contributing as much as I can, and hopefully that translates into some wins.”

That’s all well and good.  But what about facing off against your favorite foe, Tom?

“Hershey’s a big rival. It’s not going to be hard to get up for that game,” Sestito said, toeing the line.  “So it will be exciting on Friday, and we’ll see how many fireworks there are.”

Head coach Clark Donatelli knows what an imposing figure Sestito can cut on the ice, and he’s looking forward to getting the gritty forward into the lineup.

“He’s going to help us.  He’s a big guy with great hands, and he’s in really good shape,” said Donatelli.  “He’s a big asset for us.”


Donatelli also received word this morning that forward Jake Guentzel and defenseman Derrick Pouliot would be returning to the team in time for this weekend’s games.  Those two additions make an already formidable lineup even better.

Guentzell hasn’t suited up in the AHL since recording three points (1+2) against the Bears back on November 19.  Since that time, he’s make his NHL debut and tallied three goals (including two in his first game) with Pittsburgh.  Despite being in the show for more than three weeks, Guentzel still leads Wilkes-Barre/Scranton wth 17 points, while sharing the team lead in goals (7) and assists (10).  He also remains tied for second among AHL rookies in points.

Pouliot appeared in three games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on a conditioning assignment two weeks ago, and has now been declared healthy to play full time.  But a log jam on the Pittsburgh blue line means he’ll be getting in quality minutes in NEPA.

“Obviously they’re very good players, and we’ll inject them into the lineup for sure,” Donatelli stated.


The Penguins currently lay claim to first place in the AHL’s Atlantic Division by virtue of a .738 points percentage (31 of a possible 42).  But the Bears and Lehigh Valley Phantoms are close on the Penguins’ heels with .705 percentages (31 of a possible 44 points), while the Bridgeport Sound Tigers are just one point behind those two clubs.  That means the 2-5 ranked clubs in the AHL all reside in the division, and the Pens will face a pair of them in their three-in-three stretch this weekend (Friday & Saturday vs. Hershey; Sunday in Bridgeport)

“It’s a tough division, and head-to-head those teams are hard,” said Donatelli.  “We’ve got our hands full, but we’re just going to take it game-by-game.”


The Pens return home on Friday, December 9 when they play the Hershey Bears at 7:00pm.  It’s an Eyewitness News Fan Friday, with $14 lower bowl tickets, select draft beers for just $2 from 6-7:30pm, and a post-game autograph session with two Penguins players.

Penguins ticket packages, including 22-game12-game, and 10-voucher flex packs, are available directly through the Penguins offices by calling 570-208-7367.

GUENTZEL, POULIOT RETURN TO WILKES-BARRE

story_pouliot

The Pittsburgh Penguins have re-assigned defenseman Derrick Pouliot and forward Jake Guentzel to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins of the American Hockey League, it was announced today by executive vice president and general manager Jim Rutherford.

Guentzel has played five games in his first NHL recall, scoring twice in his Pittsburgh debut on Nov. 21 against the New York Rangers and totaling four points (3G-1A) during his stint.

Pouliot was activated from injured reserve following a lower-body injury he suffered on Oct. 20 against San Jose. Last weekend, he played three games for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton during a conditioning assignment, going scoreless.  

The Pens return home on Friday, December 9 when they play the Hershey Bears at 7:00pm.  It’s an Eyewitness News Fan Friday, with $14 lower bowl tickets, select draft beers for just $2 from 6-7:30pm, and a post-game autograph session with two Penguins players.

Penguins ticket packages, including 22-game12-game, and 10-voucher flex packs, are available directly through the Penguins offices by calling 570-208-7367.

PENGUINS WEEKLY – 12/6/16

800_wilson-4

Penguins prepare for Bears after successful St. John’s trip

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (14-4-3-0) takes three of four points against the IceCaps

 

Weekly Rewind

Saturday, Dec. 3 – PENGUINS 6 at St. John’s 2

The Penguins’ power play carried them to a convincing victory in the first game of a back-to-back set at Mile One Centre. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s man advantage struck for a season-high three times in the contest, including two scored 19 seconds apart. Jean-Sébastien Dea’s even strength marker with less than a minute left in the second period was his seventh of the season, making him the team’s active leader in goals.

Sunday, Dec. 4 – PENGUINS 2 at St. John’s 3 (OT)

After coming back from a 2-0 deficit and forcing overtime, the Penguins ultimately fell in the extra frame despite outshooting their opponent, 52-25. Oskar Sundqvist tied Dea for the team lead in goals with his seventh of the year. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s power play struck for the third-straight game, as well.

 

The Week Ahead

Friday, Dec. 9 – PENGUINS vs. Hershey

The Penguins return home and face a familiar foe in the Hershey Bears. These two squads have already met three times this season, and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton has won twice. It is also the first Eyewitness News Fan Fridays game this year.

Saturday, Dec. 10 – PENGUINS vs. Hershey

The Pens and Bears square off for the second night in a row at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton is 7-0-1-0 in the second game of back-to-backs this season.

Sunday, Dec. 11 – PENGUINS at Bridgeport

Wrapping up the three-games-in-three-days weekend for the Penguins is a contest with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. The Sound Tigers were bested by the Pens in a 1-0 game in Northeastern PA in their last meeting. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton is 3-0-0-0 in the third game of three-in-threes this year.

 

Ice Chips

– The Penguins are 10-0-1-0 in their last 11 games vs. St. John’s.

– The Penguins have allowed the fewest goals per game (2.00) of any team in the AHL this year.

– Of Dominik Simon’s four goals this season, three have been game-winners.

– Rookie Casey DeSmith’s .930 save percentage and 1.82 goals against average both rank first among all Eastern Conference goaltenders.

–  Oskar Sundqvist is one point shy of tying his total offensive output in 45 games played last season (17 pts). Sundqvist has appeared in 19 contests for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton this year.

– Chad Ruhwedel reached his 100th AHL point with an assist in Saturday’s game at St. John’s.

 

DIVISION STANDINGS

TEAM                       GP       W         L        OTL     SOL     PTS         Pt%

1. PENGUINS          21         14         4          3          0         31           .738

2. Lehigh Valley      22         15         6          1           0        31           .705

3. Hershey               22         13         4          4           1         31           .705

4. Bridgeport           22         15         7          0          0        30         .682

5. Providence          22          9          6          4          3        25           .568

6. Springfield           21          8          8          3          2         21          .500

7. Hartford                21          7          11          3          0        17           .405

 

TEAM LEADERS

SKATERS                    GP        G         A        PTS

Jake Guentzel*^          16         7         10        17

Oskar Sundqvist         19         7          9         16

Tom Kostopoulos       21         6         10        16

Carter Rowney            18         5          8         13

Kevin Porter                 19         5          7          12

 

GOALIES                  GP     W-L-OT      GAA        Sv%    Shutouts

Casey DeSmith*      7         5-0-2        1.82        0.930         0

Tristan Jarry              14        9-4-1          1.99        0.927          1

 

* = rookie

^ = currently with Pittsburgh

UPCOMING GAME SCHEDULE

DATE                 OPPONENT     LOCATION                         TIME      

Fri, Dec. 9          Hershey              Mohegan Sun Arena            2:30 p.m.

Sat, Dec. 10      Hershey              Mohegan Sun Arena            2:30 p.m.

Sun, Dec. 11      Bridgeport         Webster Bank Arena             5:00 p.m.

 

RECENT TRANSACTIONS

Sat, Dec. 3         (LW)    Tom Sestito                 Reassigned on loan by PIT

PENGUINS PRACTICE REPORT – November 30

It’s hard to believe, but the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins are already one-fourth of the way through the 2016-17 American Hockey League regular season.  Through 19 games, the Penguins hold a13-4-2-0 mark, good for 28 points and a .737 winning percentage – the top mark in the Eastern Conference.

It hasn’t been all easy sailing for the Penguins, though, who are coming off of a tough stretch of six games in 11 days during which time they went 3-2-1-0.  The Pens also experienced their first back-to-back non-wins last week, when they dropped a 4-0 decision in Hershey on November 23, and fell in overtime to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers two days later.

“There’s a way in which we play the right way.  If we don’t do it, things don’t come out our way,” said captainTom Kostopoulos, noting the team’s result in Hershey.  “If we do things the right way, like we did most of the night against Bridgeport, last game, we didn’t give up any goals.”

The Penguins have had a chance to catch their breath this week, enjoying a day off on Sunday, followed by three days of brisk practices at the Toyota SportsPlex.  That’s been a benefit to the club according to defenseman Cameron Gaunce.

“I think we’ve really improved our game over the last couple of days,” Gaunce stated.  “I think our second game with Hershey, we weren’t as good as we could have been.  Coming back, getting a day, and then playing Bridgeport back-to-back was good for us.

“Though we didn’t win in the first night, I thought we played well in Bridgeport.  Then we had an even better game, a very complete game, on Saturday night, winning 1-0.  I thought it could have been even more, but their goaltender played pretty well.”

Gaunce and his teammates now hit the road to take on the St. John’s IceCaps for a two-game set in Newfoundland this Saturday and Sunday.  Both games start at 2:30pm Eastern Time (4:00pm in St. John’s).

The Penguins return home on Friday, December 9 when they play the Hershey Bears at 7:00pm.  It’s an Eyewitness News Fan Friday, with $14 lower bowl tickets, select draft beers for just $2 from 6-7:30pm, and a post-game autograph session with two Penguins players.

Penguins ticket packages, including 22-game12-game, and 10-voucher flex packs, are available directly through the Penguins offices by calling 570-208-7367.