BINGHAMTON – The Charlotte Checkers rebounded with a 6-3 win over the Binghamton Devils on Saturday night in front of 4,430 at Floyd L. Maines Veterans Memorial Arena.
The second contest of the weekend got off to a quick start when Chris Conner grabbed the first goal of the game just 2:18 into the first period. Receiving the puck right out in front, Conner beat goaltender Anton Forsberg from the left circle for his 11th of the year. Tallying the assists on Conner’s goal were David Quenneville and Egor Sharangovich to give the Devils a 1-0 lead.
Just 17 seconds after Conner’s goal, Charlotte was very quick to answer as Jake Bean tied the game at one with his eighth of the season. A quick pass from Steven Lorentz led to Bean launching the puck over the left shoulder of Louis Domingue and into the back of the net. Lorentz and Terry Broadhurst collected the helpers on the play at the 2:35 mark of the first.
Binghamton snatched the lead back 19 seconds later with Michael McLeod’s eighth of the season. After Brandon Baddock and Nathan Bastian fought to free the puck from a mass of Checkers defensemen behind the net, it landed on the stick of McLeod waiting out in front. McLeod’s falling one timer beat Forsberg, putting the Devils back up by one. Baddock logged the primary assist and Bastian registered the second at 2:54 of the first period.
A power-play goal at 11:56 of the first period lifted the Devils to a 3-1 lead. Matt Tennyson fed a pass over to Julian Melchiori who rocketed a one timer that flew right past Forsberg for his fifth of the year. The assists on the play were credited to Tennyson and Brandon Gignac for the two-goal lead.
With just 15 seconds left in the first, the Checkers cashed in on a power play to pull within one. Oliwer Kaski blasted a slap shot over the shoulder of Domingue and the Devils lead was decreased to 3-2. Bean collected the lone assist and the Devils took the 3-2 lead into the first intermission.
The Checkers started the second period off strong with three goals, grabbing their first lead of the game. Joey Keane logged his ninth of the season as he whipped a shot from the left wing circle, that went off the post and in. David Gust and Lorentz registered the assists on the goal 3:34 into the period.
The second strike came off a double deflection at 4:21 into the period when Fredrik Claesson sent the puck at the net, hitting both Spencer Smallman and Clark Bishop out in front, with Bishop ultimately receiving the credit for the goal. Charlotte took a 4-3 lead on Bishop’s sixth of the year.
6:34 into the middle frame, Lorentz buried his 18th of the season on the power play. Lorentz raced down the left side and rocketed a shot over Domingue’s shoulder for a 5-3 lead. The blast shot settled right under the crossbar with Keane recording the lone assist. Charlotte took a two-goal lead into the third period.
Charlotte added the empty-net goal for a 6-3 win. Forsberg stopped 36 of 39 for the win while Domingue denied 17 of 22 in the loss.
The Devils are back home next Friday and Saturday night against Hartford and Toronto. Friday is $10 college tickets and DIFD Night to support mental health awareness in the Southern Tier. Saturday gainst Toronto is Heart Cup Night at 4:05 p.m. followed by Binghamton Police and Fire Departments battling it out on the ice. Tickets are available by calling or texting “TICKETS” to 607-722-7367.
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