Hats Fly For Wolf Pack in Victory Over Phantoms


Matthew Tomer, Sports Editor

The Hartford Wolf Pack were in Allentown, Pennsylvania this past Sunday to face the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. A total of ten goals were scored in Hartford’s 6-4 thrilling victory over the Phantoms. This was the second of back-to-back games where Hartford has secured a multi-goal, third-period comeback. From start to finish, this game was well worth the price of admission.

The first period was all Hartford, as they got out to a strong start on the road. An initial shot from Ty Emberson turned into a rebound goal by Gustav Rydahl to give the Wolf Pack a 1-0 lead. The goal came at 12:42 and was Rydahl’s fifth goal of the season. Hartford outshot the Phantoms 12-8 in the opening frame.

After the first period, the Phantoms didn’t let Hartford control the second period of the game. Just 99 seconds into the period, Garrett Wilson evened out the scoring following a defensive zone turnover by the Wolf Pack. Moments later the Phantoms would strike again with a powerplay goal.

Going into the third period, the Wolf Pack trailed the game 3-1. Despite a two-goal deficit, they wouldn’t back down. At 7:16 into the third period, Will Cuylle brought the game to within one goal off a powerplay goal for his 16th goal of the season. Shortly after that, the Phantoms would answer with a goal of their own to regain a two-goal lead. Garrett Wilson was the goal scorer on this one making the hats fly for his third goal to cap off a hat-trick performance.

Once again, the Wolf Pack would cut the lead to within one following another rebounded shot from Rydahl. Just 2:42 later, Rydahl would light the lamp again completing his first career AHL hat-trick. No rebound was needed this time around as the puck cleanly found the back of the net off a strong slapshot, tying the game at 4-4. Putting Hartford ahead was Libor Hájek at 18:00 into the final frame. Just when the fans thought the game was over, Turner Elson capped off the five-goal period with an empty net goal at 19:25, making it his 12th goal of the season.

The Wolf Pack remains on the road to face the Springfield Thunderbirds tonight at the MassMutual Center. Tonight’s game continues Hartford’s longest road trip of the season. The puck drop is set for 7:05 p.m.