With just eight games remaining in the regular season, the Albany Devils are sixth in the Eastern Conference standings at 35-21-4-8. Their 82 points position them two points behind fifth-place Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, a point ahead of seventh-place Providence, five points ahead of eighth-place Norfolk and six points ahead of ninth-place Hershey.
All three of Albany’s games this week are on the road. The team travels to face Syracuse Friday at 7 pm, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Saturday at 7:05 pm and Adirondack Sunday at 3 pm. The contests can be watched online or on mobile devices at ahllive.com. Additionally, Saturday’s outing can be heard on 104.5 “The Team” ESPN Radio.
Sunday’s game at Glens Falls Civic Center marks the final contest between the Albany Devils and the Adirondack Phantoms, who are set to relocate to Allentown, PA for the 2014-15 season. Since the Devils move from Lowell, MA to the Capital Region, the two teams have faced off 45 times and Albany owns a 23-16-4-2 record.
Syracuse are 12th in the Eastern Conference at 27-29-4-7 (65 pts.), while Wilkes-Barre/Scranton is fifth at 38-22-3-5 (84 pts.). Adirondack is 15th in the conference at 25-36-1-5 (56 pts.). The Crunch have points in four straight games and the Penguins are coming off back-to-back wins this past weekend. The Phantoms are on a five game winless streak.
The Devils 35 wins are the most in franchise history after 68 games. The 2009-10 team, which had 34 victories at the same point, had 36 after 76 and finished with 39 during an 80-game schedule.
ALBANY, NY — The Albany Devils and the Binghamton Senators went the distance Sunday at Times Union Center. They actually went just as far as possible with the game being decided in the fifth round of the shootout. In the end, captain Rod Pelley was the only player to find the back of the net, helping the Devils to a 3-2 victory.
“He has scored in practice,” said Head Coach Rick Kowalsky. “He has consistently had some success in practice and that was the decision there. We try to use that a little bit as a gauge, but I think these things, they can go either way.”
For Pelley, it was his first shootout attempt of the season.
“We practice shootouts in practice and I just scored a couple times on the same move,” Pelley said. “Maybe just looking to change it up, throw a little wrinkle in there. I was watching the goalie the first three shooters and if I did get called I knew what I was going to do. It happened to just work out tonight.”
Netminder Scott Wedgewood, who made 23 saves during regulation and overtime, was a perfect five-for-five in the shootout. After Pelley’s goal, he stonewalled Derek Grant for his 14th win of the season and fifth in his last six starts.
“Pelley made a great move putting us up one,” Wedgewood said when asked about the fifth round. “[Grant] came in and I just kind of held my ground as much as I could. Once he made a move to the inside, I kind of took it away from him and he went back. It’s just a desperate kind of split as far as you can go and reach back for your post. I couldn’t really keep my eye on him, but I just led with my leg and he ran out of room.”
The shootout win was the Devils first at Times Union Center since Mar. 10, 2013 (3-2 vs. Adirondack). They improve to 35-21-4-8 overall and move into sixth-place in the Eastern Conference with 82 points. Binghamton goes to 40-21-1-5 and remains third in the conference with 86 points.
Albany erased two Binghamton leads during regulation. Matt Puempel opened the scoring off a Devils miscue at 5:51 of the first and the Devils responded, taking advantage of a four minute power play in the second period. Alexander Urbom and Scott Timmins setup Reid Boucher, who ripped a wrister past an unsuspecting Scott Greenham at 9:13.
The game remained tied until Alex Grant’s blast beat a screened Wedgewood at 17:03 of the same period.
Albany, who stayed out of the penalty box the entire game, owned a 27-25 shot advantage and went 1-3 on the power play. The team went 1-1-0-1 during its three-in-three weekend.
“It is really nice to pick up two points heading into another long week,” Pelley said. “Obviously there are things we’re going to work on and drill away at, but it’s nice to get three-of-six points. We’re just going to keep heading in the right direction.”
The Devils return to action with the first of three consecutive road games. The team travels to face the Syracuse Crunch Friday at 7 pm at the War Memorial at Oncenter. Fans can follow the action at 104.5 “The Team” ESPN Radio.