Andrew Hammond earned his first professional shutout stopping all 29 shots he faced and help Binghamton rolling to its second straight home ice rout as Worcester was the latest victim this time by a score of 8-0. After the Senators 6-2 win over the Penguins on Friday night, the AHL’s league leading offense erupted for eight lead by Mike Sdao‘s two goals as the Sharks couldn’t match their intensity. The deeply talented Sens are two for two during the Olympic Break with four more to go before the NHL is back and with a likely call-up from Ottawa. Senators open up a four point lead in the East as things are really tight in the division with the streaking Hershey Bears defeating the Penguins 5-4 and Norfolk wins over Syracuse 2-1 as those two are tied for second and the Penguins slip to fourth.
Binghamton Senators Mike Hoffman unloads from the blue line in on Worcester Shark’s goaltender Harri Sateri. Photo courtesy of Alicia Strauch.
A good, healthy size crowd has arrived on a Saturday night which is great to see as the two teams start out on a little lull trying to set their own pace early on. Stephane Da Costa gets the home club out front first as he plays a little give and go with Mike Hoffman which neither seemed to want to take the shot but find a way as Da Costa buries his 13th of the season up high over Harri Sateri. It was odd watching Da Costa pass up the puck while being in so close on net but Hoff’s quick return made the difference. Jim O’Brien lays down a one timer screaming in on Sateri to make a 2-0 game as Sateri’s body language shows his disgust in not coming up with the save. Play starts to get a bit chippy but Senators end up looking strong in the period.
Sens high-powered offense starts to unload in the second as they would score four straight but not before Hammond’s glove save from Matt Tennyson‘s hard shot from the point. Cole Schneider scores his 17th on a 3-1 break and elects to shoot threading a forehand shot right past Sateri’s left to make a 3-0 contest. Two minutes after, big Mike winds up on loose puck tossed by Hoffman from behind the cage and Sdao simply rifles a bullet from the slot up high past Sateri, who had zero chance on it, for a 4-0 lead and the rout is on.
On the next play Jimmy Bonneau is not too pleased and takes on Sdao as the two heavies battle it out near center ice on a long fight sequence as Sdao finally takes his man down as his jersey is completely off. Soon after, Hammond comes up with a big save on Yanni Gourde as Hammy was sprawled out on his belly but gets the glove out on it. Chris Wideman wasn’t happy with Gourde’s pestering Andrew as the two exchanged bear hugs which Gourde tries to get some punches landed in on Chris.
Mark Borowiecki lands a huge hit on Eriah Hayes near the corner boards and Nick Petrecki collides with Boro after and sending him to the ice. Mark quickly rises and the two big guys exchange a few punches with Boro muscling Petrecki over on his back. Then Jean-Gabriel Pageau‘s solid individual effort almost earned him a goal as his quick shot rolls up and over Sateri’s shoulder and close to being in the net. However, Shane Prince gets a gift goal when Schneider’s shot is saved but it gives Prince an open net on the rebound as Prince has his 16th putting the Senators up by five for the Biscuit Goal.
Mark Stone would close out the second scoring on the doorstep of Sateri’s crease for the easy tap in from Corey Cowick‘s slap pass making it a 6-0 game as Worcester looks probably just as tired as they feel as Binghamton keeps adding to their league’s top offense and applying the pressure, something they seemed to have fixed lately while playing some sound hockey.
Third period couldn’t have come any sooner for the Sharks as this game has already been decided. Senators add two more with the first coming of the stick of Sdao for his second of the night sitting high on a 3-1 break as Pager with the all-purpose pass in setting up Mike for his fourth of the season. Sdao runs out of real estate and crashes into the boards as his team mates give him the face wash drawing smiles from Mike during the goal celebration. Then Pageau’s shot from the boards gets deflected in off of Matt Puempel out front for the eighth goal and seals the rout as the Sens earn their first shutout of the season on home ice while the Sharks can’t get out of the Arena fast enough.
NOTES & OBSERVATIONS
- Great crowd as for the second night in a row a fan put the puck into the hole from center ice to win $1000 during the intermission. That’s just crazy as it’s the fourth time this season it has happened.
- Senators wore ‘Binghamton USA‘ jersey’s which were auctioned off after the game to commemorate the Winter Olympics for team USA.
- Worcester didn’t get into town until around four in the morning coming from Manchester Friday night.
- Sens tried to get Sdao the hat trick by giving him the puck during the waning minutes of the contest but fell short to the smiles of Mike for his team mates efforts.
- Not only was it a McDonald’s Biscuit night but also a Dunkin Donut free doughnut night as the club had a home ice shutout for the first time this season as Sens fans will eat well in the morning with the free promotional goodies.
3 STARS OF THE GAME
- #1 Hammond (29 saves)
- #2 Sdao (2a)
- #3 Stone (1g 1a)
Wednesday Night vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.
Cover photo and insert courtesy of Alicia Strauch.