Conor Sheary’s three point night (2 goals, 1 assist) helped lead the Wilkes Barre/Scranton Penguins to a 5-2 win over the Syracuse Crunch in Game 3 Wednesday night as the Penguins earned a sweep in the best-of-five Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series.
Sheary, Wilkes Barre’s leading scorer in the regular season (45 points) led the Penguins with five points in the series.
Derrick Pouliot (1 goal, 1 assist), Scott Wilson (1 goal, 1 assist) and Andrew Ebbett (1 goal, 1 assist) each had a goal and assist in the win.
Matthew Murray improved to 3-0 in the post-season in making 33 saves on 35 shots. Murray earned praise from his head coach for coming up big when the Crunch were pressuring.
“Last ten minutes, he was fantastic,” WBS head coach John Hynes said via the Citizens Voice. “He made some pretty big saves for us when the lead could have been cut even more and pressure came on. I thought he was very good all game, but in those pushes, a season is on the line. You know there’s going to be reckless abandon and hard play. He was out challenging shooters. He was very calm and he played well through traffic.”
Murray posted a 1.00 GAA and .965 save percentage in the series.
Kasperi Kapanen had four points in the series, including an assist in Game 3 where he setup Derrick Pouliot for a power play goal.
NHL draft and prospect insider Corey Pronman of ESPN covered the game last night. Kasperi Kapanen and Scott Wilson were two players to catch his eye. One of the biggest question marks for Kapanen this summer is going to be getting stronger as he’s a twig, listed at 180 pounds, and some believe that’s a generous weight for him.
On Kapanen skating is great, skill is great, work ethic/intagibles are there, the frame is a problem though, losing 1v1 battles vs big guys.
The Penguins (25-15-6, 56 pts) on Tuesday night dropped to the final wildcard spot in the Eastern Conference. The Islanders (26-15-4, 56 pts) 8-2-0 in their last 10 games, continue to hang around in the Metropolitan Division and is it finally time to start buying into the Islanders as having sustainability in race for a top-3 spot in the Metro?
The possession numbers, 5th worst in the NHL, have been poor all season for the Islanders, but the Barry Trotz effect is working to counter that with the 2nd-best Goals For% (57%/+23) at even strength in the NHL. With the Islanders you continue to wait for the goaltending to start trending down but it hasn’t to this point. Robin Lehner is 13-7-0 with a 2.16 GAA, .928 SV% and Thomas Greiss is 13-8-1 with a 2.62 GAA, .918 SV%. These numbers hold where NYI is getting .930 and .920 type goaltending, the Islanders will continue to sick around.