From Near Collapse To Sudden Victory
ALBANY, NY – Matt Lorito forced overtime with 6.8 seconds remaining and Brian O’Neill netted the game-winning goal 19 seconds later to give the Albany Devils a 3-2 victory against the Binghamton Senators Friday at the Floyd L. Maines Veterans Memorial Arena.
Albany was on the brink of defeat after allowing two goals in the third period. Then Head Coach Rick Kowalsky summoned netminder Ken Appleby to the bench with 1:30 on the clock. The Devils’ pressure finally paid off when Jim O’Brien’s shot deflected to Lorito down low near the right post. He snuck the puck between Chris Driedger legs, securing a point for Albany.
In overtime, O’Neill stole the puck in the offensive zone and found O’Brien cutting towards the net. His shot was stopped, but O’Neill swung around the net and scooped in the rebound at the 12 second mark. The tally was O’Neill’s second overtime winner in as many games.
The Devils, who improved to 26-0-3-0 when leading after two periods, moved to 35-15-8-0. The Senators dropped to 23-32-4-1.
Ken Appleby registered his second straight win, making 23 saves. At the other end, Driedger made 24 stops.
Reece Scarlett was Albany’s other goal scorer. He found the back of the net with a point shot at 15:45. O’Brien also assisted on that tally, giving him a season-high three points.
Albany had lost its 1-0 lead when Binghamton took advantage of a 5-on-3 power play and a group of tired defenseman to flip the game during the final period.
Albany was already short a defenseman after Dan Kelly was injured on a knee-to-knee play late in the second period. In the third, Corbin McPherson and Marc-Andre Gragnani were both sent to the box 27 seconds apart, leaving the Devils just three defensemen during the Senators’ two-man advantage.
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The Devils’ three-in-three, North Division weekend continues with a 5 pm start against the Utica Comets Saturday. The first 1,500 fans to arrive will receive a Devils Jersey Lunchbox. Those not in attendance can follow the action online at ahllive.com.