The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins can lay claim to their first regular season division title with a win this Wednesday night against the Binghamton Senators.
The Penguins currently hold a six-point lead over the Hershey Bears in the race for the East Division championship (104 to 98), and still have two games in hand on their divisional rivals (74 games played for the Pens, 76 for the Bears).
Hershey’s highest possible points total heading into this week’s action is 106, meaning that if Wilkes-Barre/Scranton picks up two points in the standings, the Bears drop two, or any combination thereof, the Penguins would be crowned division champs.
The highest the Penguins have ever finished in the regular season was a tie for second in the Mid-Atlantic Division during the 2000-01 season. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton posted a 36-33-9-2 record for 83 points that year, and advanced to the Calder Cup Finals.
The Penguins are also in a virtual tie for the Eastern Conference title as of April 2, tied with the Portland Pirates with 104 points through 74 games. The Atlantic Division leading Pirates hold the tiebreaker, though, with 48 wins to the Penguins’ 47.
WHITEOUT WARRIOR DEAL
Fans purchasing two tickets to the Penguins’ Wednesday, April 5 game against the Binghamton Senators and the Friday, April 7 game against the Norfolk Admirals will receive a FREE 2006 whiteout T-shirt. Tickets for these two home contests start as low as $14.50.
This deal is available ONLY at the PENGUINS TEAM STORE or by calling a Penguins ticket representative at 208-7367.
PLAYOFF TICKETS ON SALEFRIDAY
Tickets for the first three Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Calder Cup Playoff home games will go on sale this Friday, April 7 at 10:00am. Tickets will be available for purchase at the Wachovia Arena Box Office, on-line at www.ticketmaster.com or by calling TicketMaster at 570-693-4100.
Ticket pricing for Games A, B and C will be $34.00 for Yellow Zone seats, $24.00 for Red Zone, $20.50 for Gold Zone and $16.75 for Blue Zone.
Dates and times for all Penguins postseason contests will be announced at a later date.
PENGUINS SET HOME WINS RECORD
The Penguins’ win April 1 against the Lowell Lock Monsters was the 24th victory on home ice this season, setting a new team record for home wins and home points. This year’s club is 24-7-2-2 (52 points) through 35 home games, with five more contests slated for the Wachovia Arena at CaseyPlaza.
Last year’s club went 23-12-3-2 (51 points) to set the previous team records.
SABOURIN PASSES FLEURY
Dany Sabourin picked up his 27th victory of the season with a 4-3 win April 1 against the Lowell Lock Monsters, breaking Marc-Andre Fleury’s former team record of 26 wins in a season, established last year.
Sabourin currently leads the American Hockey League with a 2.20 goals against average, a .925 save percentage, is tied for third in wins (27) and tied for fourth in shutouts (3).
The Penguins continue to lead the AHL in defense, having allowed just 161 goals through 74 games thus far (2.175 goals per game). The next closest team in the goals against column is the Omaha Ak-Sar-Ben Knights, who have allowed 191 in 72 games (2.65 goals per game).
The Penguins team record for fewest goals allowed in a season is 197 (2.4625 goals per game), set during the 2003-04 campaign.
HUSSEY TIES GAME-WINNING GOAL MARK
Matt Hussey’s game-winning goal April 1 vs. Lowellwas his seventh of the season, which equals the club record for game-winning goals in a season set by Michel Ouellet in 2003-04. It was also Hussey’s 10th career game-winning goal, tying him for fourth place on the team’s all-time list with Tom Kostopoulos.
The Penguins are averaging 8,145 fans per home game this season (285,082 in 35 games), 100% of capacity.
A LOOK AHEAD:
Wednesday, April 5 – BinghamtonSenators @ Penguins
- The Penguins are 5-1-0-1 against the Senators this season.
- This is the eighth and final meeting between the teams this season.
- Binghamtonis 32-33-4-4 (72 points) and in fifth place in the East Division.
Friday, April 7 – NorfolkAdmirals @ PENGUINS
- The Penguins 8-1-0-0 against Norfolkthis season, 4-0-0-0 on home ice.
- This is the 10th and final regular season meeting between the teams.
- Norfolkclinched a playoff spot with a 3-2 win over Hartfordon Sunday.
- The Admirals 39-27-4-4 (86 points) and in third place in the East Division.
Saturday, April 8 – PhiladelphiaPhantoms @ PENGUINS
- The Penguins are 6-1-1-0 against the Phantoms this season.
- This is the ninth of 10 meetings between the clubs.
- Philadelphiais 32-34-1-7 (72 points) and in sixth place in the East Division.
INDIVIDUAL LEAGUE LEADERS
- Dany Sabourin leads the American Hockey League with a 2.20 goals against average and a .925 save percentage, is tied for third with 27 wins and tied for fourth with three shutouts.
- Dennis Bonvie is first overall with 402 penalty minutes.
- Daniel Carcillo is eighth with 262 penalty minutes.
- Alain Nasreddine is tied for 10th with a plus-20 rating.
- Matt Hussey is tied for third with seven game-winning goals.
ON THE AIR
All Penguins games can be heard live on QFM 92.1 and on the internet at www.wbspenguins.com, with Tom Grace calling the action.
ON THE WEB
All Penguins games can be seen live on the internet thanks to the B2 Network. Log on to www.wbspenguins.com to watch all Penguins home and road games live.
Good seats remain for all Penguins home games. Full season, partial season, group and individual tickets for Penguins home games are now on sale. For more information, contact the Penguins at 570-208-7367 or log on to www.wbspenguins.com.