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Backlund Shines for Phantoms

by Staff Writer / Philadelphia Flyers
2009-10 Record: 3-2-1-0, 7 points (2-1-1-0 Home, 1-1-0-0 Road), Third Place - East Division

Week 3 Recap:
Adirondack knew heading into Week 3 that their first three-in-three (three games in three days) would be a challenge, but by Sunday night they had answered the bell.  The Phantoms got off to a great start on Friday night as they went toe-to-toe with the defending Calder Cup champion Hershey Bears.  Adirondack goalie Johan Backlund out-dueled Michal Neuvirth, the 2009 Calder Cup Playoff MVP, as he allowed just one goal to the high-powered Hershey offense and rookie defenseman Kevin Marshall scored the game-winner early in the third period for his first career professional goal.  Saturday night marked the beginning of the Time Warner Cable Cup series, as the Albany River Rats came to town.  Nick Dodge put the visitors ahead late in the first period and Adirondack was forced to chase the game for almost forty minutes.  But right before the final horn Krys Kolanos saved the Phantoms by scoring the tying goal and forcing overtime.  The River Rats took Round One of twelve by grabbing the winning goal in overtime from leading scorer Jerome Samson, but the Phantoms earned a point on the night in the 2-1 defeat.  Sunday Adirondack secured their first road win of the season by going into Bridgeport and beating a very talented Sound Tigers team 4-2.  Flyers backup goalie Brian Boucher got the start for the Phantoms in a conditioning assignment and he looked every bit of the NHL caliber goaltender that he is, stopping 29-of-31 shots faced for his 60th career Phantoms win.  Offensively the Phantoms were led by their veteran line of Kolanos, Jason Ward and captain Jared Ross.  Both Ross and Kolanos had one goal and one assist, while Ward scored the game-winning goal for his 100th career AHL goal.
Week 4 Preview:
After a physically and mentally challenging three-game weekend last week, Adirondack’s schedule lightens back to two games, but the challenge remains just as difficult.  Friday night the Phantoms host the Hartford Wolf Pack, their only home game against the New York Rangers affiliate this season.  Then on Saturday Adirondack will travel to Albany for Round Two of the Time Warner Cable Cup series, their first regular season trip to the Times Union Center.
As anticipated Brian Boucher was recalled by the Flyers on Monday morning from his conditioning assignment; he is expected to make his Flyers 2009-10 regular season debut during their three-game weekend.  Defenseman Randy Jones returned to practice this week after missing Sunday’s game due to an illness and forward Rob Bellamy is getting closer to recovering from a preseason injury that has kept him out of the lineup so far this year.  Tuesday morning the Flyers dealt defenseman to the Columbus Blue Jackets in exchange for right wing Stefan Legein, who was then assigned to Adirondack.  Legein is reunited with Head Coach Greg Gilbert; he played for Gilbert during the 2004-05 and 2005-06 seasons with the Mississauga IceDogs (OHL).

Friday’s game against Hartford is the first of the Phantoms monthly Ticket Redemption Nights.  Adirondack Season Ticket Holders can stop by the Phantoms’ office and exchange any unused game tickets for equal value seats to Friday’s game with the Wolf Pack.  The Phantoms have designated the last Friday home game of every month as a Ticket Redemption Night.
Week 4 Schedule:
(All games are broadcast LIVE on Classic Hits Q-101.7 FM and can also be heard for free over the Internet at and can be viewed via internet pay-per-view video on
Friday, October 23 – 7:30 pm – Glens Falls Civic Center – Glens Falls, NY
vs. Hartford Wolf Pack (2-4-0-0, 4 pts)
Tied-Seventh Place, Atlantic Division
    •    The Wolf Pack have played five of their first six games away from home and Friday’s game at Adirondack will be the fourth straight road game.  After facing the Phantoms, Hartford returns home for five consecutive games at the XL Center.  In their four losses they have been out-scored 18-10, while out-scoring their opponents 10-5 in their two wins.  In two games last week the Wolf Pack lost 6-3 at Portland and 2-1 at Springfield; they out-shot the Falcons 33-14 in the game.  Hartford’s power play has been strong (8-for-34, 23.5%) at 8th in the AHL, but their penalty kill ranks 28th out of 29 AHL teams having allowed 11 power play goals in 34 attempts (67.6%).
    •    Leading Scorers: P.A. Parenteau (RW) – 7 points (4 goals, 3 assists) in 6 GP & Bobby Sanguinetti (D) – 7 points (1 goal, 6 assists) in 6 GP.
    •    Leading Goaltender: Chad Johnson (G) – 3.91 GAA, 0.871 save pct., 2-2-0 in 4 GP.
    •    Who’s Hot: Pierre-Alexandre Parenteau (RW) – 6 points (4 goals, 2 assists) in his last five games played.  Bobby Sanguinetti (D) – 5 points (1 goal, 4 assists) and a +5 rating in his last four games played.  Dale Weise (RW) – 5 points (2 goals, 3 assists) and a +3 rating in his last five games played.
Phantoms goaltender Johan Backlund went 1-0-1 last week with a 1.47 goals against average. (photo by Andy Camp)
Saturday, October 24 – 7:00 pm – Times Union Center – Albany, NY
vs. Albany River Rats (4-2-0-0, 8 pts)
Tied-First Place, East Division
    •    The River Rats took two of three games last week, starting with a 3-1 win over Norfolk on Wednesday.  Saturday the Rats battled with Adirondack for a 2-1 overtime victory in the first Time Warner Cable Cup game as Jerome Samson scored at 2:21 of overtime to send the Rats back to Albany with two points.  Sunday Albany traveled to Worcester and struggled against the Sharks, losing 5-3 in rookie goalie Mike Murphy’s second start of the season.  Samson is still leading the team in scoring with 10 points (4 goals, 6 assists), which ties him for 3rd in the AHL in points.  Samson has scored points in all six games for Albany, which is the longest point streak in the AHL so far this year.  The River Rats are tied for the league lead in penalty kill percentage (100%) as they have not allowed a power play goal against in 21 penalty kill situations.
    •    Leading Scorer: Jerome Samson (RW) – 10 points (4 goals, 6 assists) in 6 GP.
    •    Leading Goaltender: Justin Peters (G) – 2.48 GAA, 0.921 save pct., 3-1-0 in 4 GP.
    •    Who’s Hot: Jerome Samson (RW) – 10 points (4 goals, 6 assists) in his last six games played.  Pat Dwyer (RW) – 6 points (3 goal, 3 assists) and a +4 rating in his last five games played.  Stefan Chaput (C) – 4 points (2 goals, 2 assists) and a +1 rating in his last four games played.
Week 3 Game Results:
October 16, 2009                    Hershey 1 @ Adirondack 2
October 17, 2009                    Albany 2 @ Adirondack 1 – OT
October 18, 2009                    Adirondack 4 @ Bridgeport 2
Phantoms Player of the Week: (Week 2)
Johan Backlund – G – #31               
2 GP, 1-0-1-0, 1.47 GAA, 0.945 Sv%, 52 Saves
Goaltender Johan Backlund was tested this weekend by two very offensive teams and the Swedish net minder answered the challenge.  Backlund allowed just one goal and made 27 saves as he beat the defending champs Hershey 2-1 Friday night and then followed it up with another dynamite 26-save performance in a 2-1 overtime loss to Albany.  With a 1-1-0 record on the week, Backlund turned in a 1.47 goals-against average and a 0.945 save percentage to help the Phantoms take five out of a possible six points.
Phantoms Quick Hits:
·         MAGICAL FIRST – Rookie defenseman Kevin Marshall could not have asked for better way to record his first career professional goal.  The Quebec native scored the game-winning goal at 6:20 of the third period to beat the Hershey Bears 2-1 on Friday night.  It was also his first pro point.
·         KOLANOS HEATS UP – Saturday night against Albany Krys Kolanos tied the game with a goal late in the third period, helping the Phantoms secure a point against the River Rats in a 2-1 overtime defeat.  The goal was Kolanos’ 100th career AHL goal and his first of the season for Adirondack.  Sunday at Bridgeport he tacked on two more points, scoring an empty net goal and setting up Jared Ross’ first goal of the year as the Phantoms beat the Sound Tigers 4-2.
·         QUICK VISIT – Goaltender Brian Boucher’s latest stint with the Phantoms did not last long, but he left a good impression.  Boucher spent just hours with Adirondack on Sunday afternoon, but looked sharp in a conditioning assignment.  Boucher made 29 saves on 31 shots to record his 60th win in a Phantoms uniform; it was his 62 career AHL regular season victory.
·         MILESTONE SUNDAY – Three players attained AHL milestones during Sunday’s 4-2 win at Bridgeport.  Captain Jared Ross scored his first goal of the season in the first period and the second assist went to rookie defenseman Marc-Andre Bourdon, his first career professional point.  Ross then set up the game-winning goal in the second period, a Jason Ward power play tally.  The goal was Ward’s 100th career AHL goal and the assist for Ross was his 200th career AHL point.
·         LINEUP CONCERNS – For the first four games of the season Adirondack had dresses seven defenseman and eleven forwards; with nine defenseman on the roster it has been a juggling act for Head Coach Greg Gilbert to get everyone into the lineup.  The last two games the Phantoms have returned to the traditional lineup of six defenseman and twelve forwards.  Adirondack still has seven veterans on the roster, but can only dress six for any one game, thus the team has rotated through having to sit out at least one player with 320 or more professional games under their belt.
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