The Binghamton Senators (12-17-2-1) continue to make progress in the second quarter with their second straight win behind goaltender Chris Driedger’s performance, as he turned away 37 shots that helped the BSens defeat the division leading Syracuse Crunch (17-9-0-4) in a shootout by a 3-2 margin at the War Memorial.
Binghamton’s Phil Varone was the lone goal scorer in the SO session as he pulled a few dekes that fooled Syracuse netminder Adam Wilcox before he sent a backhander into the net. Driedger stood his ground and denied all three shooters he faced for the Crunch.
The Senators and Crunch exchanged first period goals as Jack Rodewald scored his ninth of the season, and fourth in the past five games with a tip in from a cross-ice feed from Varone near the far wall. Syracuse soon tied it as forward Gabriel Dumont scored the equalizer at 16:06 for his fifth of the season that was unassisted.
In the second period, Adam Comrie put Syracuse ahead on a power play goal with defenseman Ben Harpur in the box with the assist going to defenseman Matt Taormina. But with time running down, a defensive breakdown occurred for the Crunch and the Sens capitalized on a short, two-on-one with rookie Francis Perron’s quick pass found Buddy Robinson as he patiently waited before he picked his spot up high, short side of Wilcox’s glove with 0:37:2 left remaining that sent both clubs to the intermission with the score tied 2-2.
Driedger was tested often in the middle frame as Syracuse finished out the period with a 15-3 shot advantage. ( A rare 39-23 overall)
There was no scoring in the third period as both teams played a tight, defensive game that resulted into overtime. In the three-on-three action Varone and Chris Carlisle were denied by Wilcox on two quick breakaways but Varone would get retribution in the shootout. Driedger was solid as he denied Cory Conacher, Dumont and Adam Erne for the bonus point that stunned the home crowd.
Great road win but there’s still work to do. However, time is on their side and more importantly, Driedger is playing well.
POST GAME NOTES
- Driedger with another fine outing as his record improves to 5-4-2-1, 2.82 GAA, 0.894 SV%. He carried his teammates on a tough place to play in Syracuse and looks to have his confidence back with his recent success.
- Guy Lepine dropped the gloves with Pierre-Luc Leblond in the third period as both were grabbing and clutching with no punches thrown.
- Great to see Rodewald on the first line and paying off. That’s where he best suited at with Casey Bailey up in Ottawa.
- This is the right moment in gaining points as the Toronto Marlies lost once again for their fourth straight loss with three teams within a point of fourth place, Binghamton being one of them in the North Division.
- Lots of smiles in the celebration as this team looks to be fired up and wants to succeed. No giving up and playing with confidence with Driedger leading the way.
- Akeson-Varone-Rodewald, McCormick-Paul-Blunden, Perron-Nehring-Robinson, Krushelnyski- -Gagne. Englund/Kostka, Sieloff/Harpur, Rumble/Carlisle, Lepine. Rupert sent to Wichita along with Doornbosch. Flanagan out injured and Stortini a healthy scratch.
Senators set to host the Penguins on what will be a rematch from last Monday night’s loss on home ice for the annual New Year Eve’s contest on Saturday.