AHL: Pearson, Kozun tally goals in Monarchs OT loss

Game report provided by the Monarchs, LA Kings’ AHL affiliate…

BINGHAMTON, NY – Left wing Mike Hoffman scored with 35 seconds remaining in overtime as the Manchester Monarchs fell to the Binghamton Senators, 5-4 in overtime, at the Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena on Friday night.

Manchester (22-8-2-4) leads the Atlantic Division with 50 points.  Binghamton (20-9-0-3) is ranked first in the East Division with 43 points.

“Tonight’s game was a far cry from our best hockey,” said Monarchs Head Coach Mark Morris.  “We managed to eke out a point, but we need to stick to playing with much more discipline and execute a predictable game plan.  Poke-and-go hockey doesn’t cut it in this league or in the NHL.  From the opening shift, we turned the puck over and made lots of risky decisions.  I’m not overly thrilled with the lack of attention to detail and breakdowns in structure we have seen lately.  We need to simplify our game and get back to work and play as a unit.  When we buy into that mindset, the winning will follow.”

Hoffman scored his 16th goal of the season at 4:25 of the overtime period to give the Senators the victory.  Forward Stephane Da Costa fought off Monarchs defenders along the end wall before faking a wrap around, and sending the puck to Hoffman in the right face-off circle.  Hoffman jammed the puck past Monarchs goaltender J.F. Berube for the 5-4 win.

The Senators struck first with Da Costa’s 10th tally of the season at 3:38 of the first period.  Carrying the puck down the left wing and over the Monarchs blueline, Hoffman sent a pass across the ice to left wing Cole Schneider in the right face-off circle.  Schneider then fed a pass to Da Costa at the top of the crease.  Da Costa quickly moved the puck to his backhand before flipping it over Berube’s left pad for the early goal.

Left wing Tanner Pearson tied the game at 1-1 with his team-leading 12th goal of the season at 19:11 of the opening frame.  Skating on the power play, center Linden Vey found center Jordan Weal streaking down the right wing.  Weal carried the puck into the right face-off circle and sent a pass to the top of the crease.  Pearson put on the breaks at the doorstep as he redirected the puck up and over Senators netminder Nathan Lawson’s right pad.

Defenseman Fredrik Claesson gave the Senators a 2-1 advantage with a shorthanded goal at 3:24 of the middle stanza.  Right wing Buddy Robinson stripped the puck away from a Monarchs player behind the net and sent a pass to Claesson at the left point.  Claesson ripped a slap shot from the point that soared over Berube’s left shoulder for his second goal of the season.

Binghamton doubled their lead to 3-1 with defenseman Chris Wideman’s third goal of the season at 8:43 of the second period.  Skating with the man advantage, right wing Andre Petersson collected the puck at the right point.  Finding Wideman open, Petersson sent the puck to just outside the left face-off circle.  Wideman collected the pass and fired a slap shot through traffic that beat Berube on his glove side for the power play goal.  Hoffman earned his second assist of the night on the Senators third goal.

The Monarchs scored their second power play goal of the game to bring them back to within one goal.  Pearson collected a pass from Vey along the right wing half-wall.  Pearson then sent the puck over to right wing A.J. Gale in the left face-off circle.  Gale snapped a wrist shot into the top left corner of the net, beating Lawson for his fifth goal of the season.

Right wing Brandon Kozun stole the puck from the Senators in the neutral zone and skated into Binghamton’s zone.  As he reached the right face-off circle, Kozun snapped a wrist shot into the top left corner of the net for his ninth tally of the season to tie the game at 3-3 at 9:32 of the third period.

Left wing David Dziurzynski gave the Senators their lead back at 9:35 of the final frame with his third goal of the season.  The Monarchs tried to clear the puck, but left wing Corey Cowick picked it up and circled through the right face-off circle.  Cowick released a quick shot that was tipped by Dziurzynski to beat Berube for the go-ahead goal.

Manchester tied the game, 4-4, at 18:48 of the final frame with defenseman Colin Miller’s second goal of the season.  As Berube skated to the bench for the extra attacker, Miller stole the puck from the Senators in the neutral zone.  Miller stepped over Binghamton’s blueline at the center point as he wound up for a slap shot that beat Lawson to tie the game at 4-4.

Berube (13-8-2) took his second overtime loss and eighth loss of the season making 26 saves on 31 shots.  Lawson (13-4-0) earned his 13th win of the season, stopping 31-of-35 shots.

Manchester was 2-for-6 on the power play.  Binghamton went 1-for-3 with the man advantage.

Notables:  Manchester lost just their second game in overtime this season… The Monarchs are 6-3-0-1 in their last 10 games… Left wing Tanner Pearson has five points (1-4=5) in his last three games… Center Linden Vey has five points (2-3=5) in his last three games… Goaltender J.F. Berube has appeared in 22 consecutive games for the Monarchs.

The Monarchs continue their road trip with a 7:05 p.m. contest against the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins at the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza on Saturday, January 4.

Follow @AndyTonge1 for more Monarchs news and notes.

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