FALCONS HANDED RARE REGULATION DEFEAT BY PENGUINS
Wilkes-Barre, Pa. - The Springfield Falcons (8-2-0-2) succumbed in regulation for just the second time in 12 games in 2012-2013 on Wednesday night at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza, as their comeback bid came up short in a 2-1 loss to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (7-6-0-0). The defeat ended Springfield's three-game winning streak and marked the first time in eight outings the Falcons did not collect a point.
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After recording shutouts in each of their last two games, Springfield carried a streak of over 160 minutes without allowing a goal toward the halfway point of Wednesday's contest. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton's Beau Bennett snapped the Falcons' perfect run, one-timing a Riley Holzapfel feed in from the left circle at 8:20 of the second to put the Penguins up, 1-0. The Falcons' shutout streak ended at 166 minutes and 40 seconds, as Springfield relinquished the opening goal for the first time since the season debut on Oct. 13 (11 games) and trailed for the first instance since Oct. 27 (six contests).
Bennett fired in a rebound from the left side off a long Holzapfel shot at 15:28 of the middle frame, giving the Penguins a 2-0 lead and handing the Falcons their first multi-goal deficit since Oct. 20 in a 3-1 loss to Providence (eight games).
The Falcons tried to chisel into the Penguins' two-goal advantage, peppering Wilkes-Barre/Scranton goaltender Jeff Zatkoff with 23 shots over the final 40 minutes after posting only three attempts in the initial stanza. Tomas Kubalik redirected a Nick Holden shot into the net from the slot with 1:43 remaining in the game, narrowing the Penguins' edge to 2-1. The Falcons could draw no closer, however, as they experienced their first road loss of 2012-2013.
Reigning CCM/AHL Player of the Week Curtis McElhinney (8-2-1) stopped 30 of 32 shots, as his personal shutout streak ceased at 166 minutes and six seconds. Zatkoff (5-5-0) made 26 saves in the win.
Springfield travels to Norfolk to take on the Admirals on Friday and Saturday. The Falcons conclude their away stretch in Portland on Friday, Nov. 23 when they meet the Pirates.
The Falcons return home for "Movember Night presented by Baystate Health" on Saturday, Nov. 24 against the Manchester Monarchs at 7:00 p.m. The first 1,000 fans into the building that night will receive mustaches as part of an effort to generate awareness of prostate cancer and other male illnesses.
Single-game tickets to see the Falcons in 2012-2013 can be purchased at the MassMutual Center Box Office from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. through game time on Saturday home dates, and starting four hours prior to Sunday home contests. Fans can also purchase tickets by logging onto Ticketmaster.com. For information about discounted group packages to Falcons home games, call (413) 739-GOAL (4625).
Springfield was bidding for its first four-game winning streak within the same season since Dec. 23 to 30, 2006, but could not accomplish that feat in its 11th attempt since last achieving four-straight victories...Bennett became the first multi-goal scorer against Springfield in 2012-2013...Springfield dropped to 2-1-0-0 on the road this season, falling away from home for the first time since losing to St. John's on Apr. 8, 2012...The Falcons' points streak ended at seven games, their longest run without losing in regulation since Nov. 9 to 21, 2007...The club's start through 12 games of 8-2-0-2 is one point shy of its best beginning to a season through a dozen contests (8-1-3, 1997-1998)...Springfield has allowed two goals or fewer in regulation and overtime in 11 of its 12 games this season...Bennett's first tally snapped a streak of 11-straight goals scored by Springfield...The Falcons and Penguins split their only two meetings of 2012-2013