B-Sens win their fourth straight as Mike Hoffman scores his 15th goal of the season with 28.4 seconds left in the game as they halt the Utica Comets four game home winning streak by a score of 4-3. Nathan Lawson, making the surprised start over a flu bitten Andrew Hammond, made 30 saves for his eleventh win and second in a row in as many nights. The win, puts Bingo in sole possession of first place in the East as W/B-S Penguins lost tonight at home to Norfolk Admirals by a score of 3-1.
The Comets Darren Archibald scores the game’s first goal as his shot went off of Stephane Da Costa‘s skate in past Lawson. Senators are off to a slow start and face a greasy Utica team early on. However, Matt Puempel buries the rebound on the power play, his eighth of the season, by beating Joe Cannata down low on Derek Grant‘s shot from the circle. The goal makes it a 1-1 game.
Lawson puts up a wall against Alex Friesen as he delivers the big save on a 2-1 break for the Comets. Hoffman goes in the box for slashing as the Senators can’t stay out of the box but Utica isn’t very structured on their power plays as they don’t manage a shot on net. Senators wind up finishing the period strong after the slow start.
Utica makes quick work to start the second as Alexandre Grenier catches the Sens defense napping and beats Lawson from the slot to take the early 2-1 period lead. Binghamton then comes storming back to tie the contest when Puempel scores his second of the night off of a Danny New shot from the blue line past Cannata for a 2-2 game.
Back and forth action when Archibald nails Da Costa by the boards and Micheal Sdao steps in to take matters into his own hands against Archibald. Nothing really results between the fight however it’s Sdao getting the extra two for instigating and a ten minute misconduct along with the five for fighting. Peumpel picks up an extra bench minor and it’s a five on three man advantage for Utica. Sens would kill it for the huge missed opportunity by Utica so far in the game.
Mark Stone rakes in his ninth of the season on a power play as he taps in the rebound by Cannata for a 3-2 Sens lead. Soon after Grenier notches his second of the game to tie things up at three a apiece. Senators go on a five-minute pp when Kellan Lain receives a boarding call but Chris Wideman takes a hook to negate the Sens pp as we are heading to the third.
Back and forth action for the rest of the game with no real scoring opportunities as the Sens rely on Lawson’s work and Utica’s rookie netminder making his own mark in the Comets end. That would all change with just over two minutes left in the period, as it’s the inexperienced Comets getting some real bad timing calls and things start to fall apart for them. First Brandon DeFazio gets an interference call against Stone off the center ice faceoff, then a minute later Pascal Pelletier high sticks Hoffman as he was carrying the puck in mid ice.
Just like that the two man advantage pays off with Hoffman’s snipe from the right circle has eyes for the back of the net reeling past Cannata. That goal would come with 28.4 seconds left in the third as Wideman slips him the soft set-up from his blue line. The game winner is Hoff’s team leading 15th of the season as the Sens celebrate with the cheers of the B-Sens fans getting drowned out by boos from the Utica faithful.
- Sens were three for six on the power play and killed off seven of eight man advantage opportunities for the Comets including the five on three for a two full minutes half way in the second period.
- Senators out shoot the Comets for a game total 34-33 after getting out shot themselves 12-5 in the first. Way too many penalties again for the Sens but I should be getting used to that by now as this seems to follow the pattern in every game lately.
- B-Sens Booster Club made the trip and you could hear their cheering throughout the game during the broadcast.
- Joacim Eriksson was re-called by the Vancouver Canucks earlier in the day to back up Eddie Lack who is filling in for Roberto Luongo‘s undisclosed injury. That left Cannata (2-8-0, 3.14) making his eleventh start of the season.
- Mark Borowiecki and Shane Prince returned to action after missing Friday night’s game for undisclosed reasons.
3 STARS OF THE GAME
- #1 Hoffman (1g)
- #2 Puempel (2g)
- #3 Grenier (2g 1a)
Tuesday Night host Norfolk Admirals