Andrew Hammond and the Binghamton Senators were roughed up by the visiting Syracuse Crunch by a score of 4-2 at The Floyd on Saturday thanks to a pair of goals by Mike Halmo and two assists from Michael Bournival as the Senators losing streak now stands at four. The game was overshadowed by Nick Paul’s gruesome injury suffered in the first period, but word slowly trickled in that he’ll be fine according to head coach Kurt Kleinendorst and some eyewitnesses in the downtown area.
Back to the game on hand.
As the story unfolded, this one was a much different outcome then on Friday, as the Crunch broke out for three goals and took advantage of a somewhat lazy effort from the Sens compared to last night, as home ice hasn’t been a fun place to be in with just three wins to show for in eleven contests.
Halmo would get a late goal with 9.7 seconds left in the first as his tap in was preluded with some fine tic-tac-toe passing with teammates Cameron Darcy and Michael Bournival that left Senator starter Andrew Hammond with zero chance of stopping.
Binghamton couldn’t capitalize on a four on one break out as Syracuse netminder Adam Wilcox managed to come up with the puck. But the Crunch would get two quick strikes 15 seconds apart as Hammond was, well, Hammond.
Ex-Senators defenseman Matt Taormina scored his fourth of the season with his slapper from inside his blueline that fooled Hammond for a power play tally and more importantly, a 2-0 Syracuse lead. Then it was nearly an identical shot by defenseman Adam Comrie that increased the lead to three, as the puck hit the stick of Syracuse forward Michael Bournival, which then hit the hip pad of Halmo that caused the puck to change direction in a blink of an eye towards the back of the net.
Senators would finally get on the board with their first goal in five periods at home as Kyle Flanagan stuffed in the rebound past Wilcox after forward Phil Varone did all he could do on a shorthanded breakaway that came up short with 1.7 seconds left in the second period.
That last second goal gave some life to the BSens early in the final period as Buddy Robinson tipped in a shot by a pass from along the boards by Casey Bailey to cut the margin by a single goal with 18:18 left to play. Halmo was again involved, as he got tangled up with Robinson at the doorstep of Wilcox that played a role that led up to the goal.
Soon after, Binghamton almost tied it with some fine passing from Varone to Chad Nehring along the boards, as the puck was sent out front to Bailey but was denied on a fine glove save from Wilcox.
But the dagger was placed when Syracuse scored their fourth on a tip-in off a deflection in front by Syracuse Joel Vermin, as was laid to rest by Sens’ defenseman Cris Carlisle out in front. Taormina was then credited for his second assist of the night off a shot from the point, as Syracuse emerged on top 4-2 despite being outshot 32-29.
POST GAME NOTES
- Hammond had a meltdown in the second period that was reminiscent of him giving up 3 in 36 seconds a few years back against Lehigh Valley in Allentown. The second goal was not his fault, but only he can allow a goal off a deflection of not one, but two players in front of the net. He just can’t win at the AHL level, period.
- Team was down a forward after the injury to Paul, as several players rotated in and out on the second line.
- Varone with another good effort with 2 assists. He also was solid in Friday night’s game against the Phantoms. But am I the only one that senses something is odd about him with an emphasis on his attitude? Seems he’s not the most popular guy in the locker room these days. I could be wrong.
- Bailey-Varone-Robinson, Paul-Nehring-Blunden, McCormick-Flanagan-Rodewald, Perron-Rupert-Krushelnyski. Englund/Kostka, Lepine/Harpur, Rumble/Carlisle. Zack Stortini and Patrick Sieloff healthy scratches. Chris Driedger was the back-up goaltender.
The Senators are off until next weekend when they will endure a road trip in New England with a three-in-three weekend that will begin on Friday in Providence to face the Bruins.