LEHIGH VALLEY (January 25, 2019) – The Lehigh Valley Phantom hosted the Laval Rocket at PPL Center on Friday night and held on for a 3-2 victory against the Rocket, in a game where Byron Froese and Brett Lernout scored for the Rocket while Alex Belzile, David Schlemko, Xavier Ouellet and Daniel Audette picked up assists.
Though the Rocket outshot the Phantom 13 to five in the opening period, the score was tied at the end of the 20 minutes. Lehigh Valley got on the board first as Philippe Myers wristed a puck through traffic to beat Charlie Lindgren, who made 23 saves in the Rocket’s loss. While it appeared that the Phantom would take that lead with them into the second period, Lernout slapped his second goal of the season by Lehigh Valley’s Branden Komm in the final minute of the to make it 1-1.
Despite Lindgren flashing the leather early in the second period and turning away a two-on-one late in the period, the Phantom ultimately reclaimed their earlier lead by period’s end. A powerplay goal from Justin Bailey made it 2-1 for the Phantom, and Komm stuck out his pad to prevent Hunter Shinkaruk from making it 2-2 while on a breakaway five minutes later.
The Phantom gave themselves a two-goal lead in the third period by scoring on a five-on-three, but Froese slapped his 14th of the season in the net with four minutes remaining to once again make it a one-goal game. While Lindgren was on the bench for the extra attacker Joël Bouchard’s troops pushed hard to get the equalizer, but Komm held on for his team’s 3-2 victory.
“I think we had enough scoring chances to win the game,” said Bouchard after the game. “It’s one of the games where we’ve had the most chances to score. I think we gave a lot of offense, we had a good first period […] there were just a few plays that hurt us.”
LAV: Lernout (Belzile, Schlemko) | Froese (Ouellet, Audette)
LV: Myers (Samuelsson, Vorobyev) | Bailey (Vorobyev, Conner) | Vorobyev (Conner, Carey)
Goaltenders: LAV: Lindgren (23/26) | LV: Komm (34/36)
Rocket Powerplay: 1/5 | Rocket Penalty Kill: 1/3
Three Stars: 1. Branden Komm – LV | 2. Mikhail Vorobyev – LV | 3. Philippe Myers – LV