ALBANY, NY — The Albany Devils continued its defensive shutdown trend and the offense stepped up at the right time as they knocked off the Binghamton Senators 2-1 Wednesday at Times Union Center.
After Binghamton’s Matt Puempel ended Scott Wedgewood’s record shutout streak of 164:22 with a power-play goal in the second period, the Devils mounted a comeback late in the third. It started with a 5-on-3 penalty kill for 1:41 and transitioned into scoring. Reid Boucher tied the game with the man advantage with 7:06 remaining and Mike Sislo netted the game-winning goal with just 2:43 left on the clock.
“I thought we looked a little bit sluggish through two,” said Head Coach Rick Kowalsky. “We got a little bit better each period and we just talked about taking advantage of a single mid-week game and emptying the tanks. Specialty teams were key tonight. We certainly got a boost off that big kill.”
The win improves the Devils to 33-20-3-7 and moves them up to sixth in the Eastern Conference. The Senators, who entered the game on a three-game winning streak, go to 36-21-1-4.
Coming off back-to-back shutouts during the weekend, the Devils defense proved its durability and limited the league’s top offensive team to just 19 shots. Binghamton came into the contest, averaging 3.69 goals per. Wedgewood’s lone blemish was when Peumpel snuck the puck under the Devils netminder’s outstretched leg at 15:54.
In the third, Albany took advantage of its third power play of the night. Boucher’s tying goal was his 17th of the season.
“We know we had to bear down and be desperate on that power play,” Boucher said. “We did a great job of battling for pucks and one squirted out to me and I was able to put it in.”
“Pelley and Pesonen both did a great job working it up the wall,” Sislo said. “Pesoen found some ice to get the puck in there and then I just did my best to try to beat their defense and get to it first.
“I knew that middle defenseman was there; if I could get past him then I would have a good look on the goalie. He reached out, but I was able to get around him and so it was nice to get in alone on the goalie.”
Albany, which is 19-9-2-1 at home, owned a 28-19 shot advantage and went 1-4 on the power play and 5-6 on the penalty kill.
“You have to pick up points at home,” Boucher said. “It’s just so hard to win on the road and we need the points here. We have to keep getting points every chance we get.”
Albany extended its winning streak to three games and will travel to face the Syracuse Crunch Saturday at 7 pm at the War Memorial at Oncenter. Fans can follow the action online or on mobile devices at ahllive.com. Additionally, the game can be heard on 104.5 “The Team” ESPN Radio.