The Rochester Americans carried a much younger lineup Friday evening as they faced the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins for the second time in three days. Both games required overtime to finish; however, unlike Wednesday, the Amerks didn’t come out on top after Friday’s game, dropping the game by a score of 2-1.
Scratched for the Amerks in their final of two preseason games were veterans Mike Zigomanis, Matt Ellis, Jamie Tardif and Drew Bagnall, resulting in a much younger squad facing the Penguins when compared to the Amerks team from Wednesday’s game.
Forward Colton Gillies, however, was in the lineup, making his Amerks debut after signing an AHL contract with the team earlier this week. Gillies scored the lone goal for the Rochester Americans during the regulation period, notching a goal off a rebound from Jon Parker just 3:32 into the middle frame.
After holding the 1-0 lead for over 30 minutes, the Amerks looked to be heading to victory. However, with just 2.7 seconds remaining in regulation, Mike Ratchuk tied things up for the Penguins. Cody Sylvester scored for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton in overtime. Referee TJ Luxmore initially waived the goal off due to the possibility of goaltender interference on the play, but further review resulted in it being deemed a good goal.
The game saw several fights, including two involving Wilkes-Barre tryout right winger Patrick McGrath in the first period. McGrath fought Frederick Roy before dropping the gloves with Johnny McGuire later in the first period. Just seven seconds into the second period, Amerks newcomer McGuire went with Pierre-Luc Letourneau-Leblond.
For the Rochester Americans, goaltender Matt Hackett was in net the entire game, while the Penguins split their goaltending duties. Jeff Deslaueris had 10 saves before his relief, Eric Hartzell, came in during the second period to play the remainder of the game.
The next time the Wilkes-Barre Scranton Penguins and the Rochester Americans will meet is November 20, when the Penguins visit Rochester.
The Amerks finish their preseason stint with one win and one loss in two games, both against the Penguins. The Amerks will now begin preparations for the regular season, which opens in just one week as Rochester hosts the Grand Rapids Griffins, farm team of the Detroit Red Wings.
Check back in a few days for Sabre Noise’s Rochester Americans season preview!