The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Baby Penguins continue their American Hockey League mastery.
Despite losing their coaching staff as well as several key players to parent club Pittsburgh, the Baby Penguins (35-7-3-2) continue to sit atop the AHL standings with a league-best 75 points. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton owns a six-point lead over Hershey in the East Division as well.
Matt Hussey, who spent time in Pittsburgh this season, has points in eight of his past 10 games dating back to Jan. 14 in Hershey for the Baby Penguins. In that time, Hussey has recorded 14 points (5+9), and has now taken over the team scoring lead with 36 points (14+22) in 32 games for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.
Baby Penguins rookie Jonathan Filewich netted a goal just 17 seconds into the team’s 4-3 win against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Friday night, setting a new team record for fastest goal by a Penguin to start a game. The former record of 23 seconds was held by current Pittsburgh Penguins rookie Michel Ouellet, who opened the scoring against the Springfield Falcons on Jan. 1, 2005.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton continues to receive solid efforts in goal from Dany Sabourin. He was the KOHO AHL Goaltender of the Month for January. The 25-year old posted a 7-2-1 record with a 2.26 goals-against average and a .922 save percentage in 10 games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. The sixth-year pro also earned a recall by the Pittsburgh Penguins and appeared in the 2006 Rbk Hockey AHL All-Star Game during the month.
With Sabourin leading the way, the Baby Penguins continue to have the fewest goals against in the AHL this season, having allowed just 97 goals through 47 games thus far (2.06 goals per game). The next closest team in the goals against column is the Manitoba Moose, who have allowed 126 goals in 51 contests (2.47 goals per game).
The team record for fewest goals allowed in a season is 197 (2.46 goals per game), set during the 2003-04 season.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton plays four games in five days this week, including its final two home games until the first weekend of March. The Baby Penguins take on the Philadelphia Phantoms on the road this Wednesday before returning home to face the Hershey Bears on Friday and the Albany River Rats on Saturday. Following the mini-homestand, the Baby Penguins will play their next nine games on the road, taking in two countries, four states, two provinces and eight cities during the final three weeks of February.