The Willkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins got a hat trick from Ryan Haggarty on Friday night, spoiling a Belleville Senators three-game home winning streak, in a 6-2 win.
B-Sens coach Kurt Kleinendorst says it’s was another frustrating night against a team who scored six times against them last weekend as well.
Haggerty’s first came just over five minutes into the opening period when he rushed up the ice from blue line to blue line, being chased by B-Sens’ defenceman Ben Harpur, and beat Marcus Hogberg with a long shot.
Four minutes later Colin White answered with his first goal of the game, when he tapped in a Max McCormick pass from behind the net, following a Jim O’Brien rush deep into the Penguins’ zone to create the chance.
It was tied 1-1 after the first period and Belleville looked to be on its way to improving its result against the Pens.
Haggerty scored his second just 3:30 into the next period, when he again carried the puck over the blue line and fired home a wrist shot from above the circles, getting bounces off both posts and in, to make it 2-1.
Newly-named Canadian Olympian Christian Thomas made it 3-1 about two minutes later with a wrist shot from the far circle.
The Thomas goal spurred a goaltending change from the Belleville bench, with Danny Taylor replacing Hogberg.
Kleinendorst told media after the game, the young Swedish netminder still has some things to figure out, after two solid outings at home on December 30th against Providence and January 3rd against Binghamton.
White would score his second late in the period to cut the lead to 3-2, burying a one-timer off a set face-off play, with the man advantage.
Wilkes-Barre put the game out of reach in the third period with a trio of consecutive goals.
Haggerty’s hat trick goal came just past the five minute mark, once more carrying the puck into the zone on the left side, cutting to the slot and putting a wrist shot past Taylor.
Haggerty also assisted on Garrett Wilson’s goal at 14:17 of the third, as Wilson found a hole on Taylor’s short side, while straddling the goal line on the powerplay.
And Jean-Sebastien Dea added an empty netter, out-racing defender Max Lajoie on a delayed icing call to make it 6-2.
Kleinendorst says it’s a good thing the team is back on the ice Saturday night, so they can put the loss behind them and try to find some consistency.
Belleville hosts the Hartford Wolf Pack at 7:05 at Yardmen Arena on Saturday.
You can hear live play-by-play coverage for Eastern Overhead Doors and Deerhaven Farm and Garden, starting at 6:50 p.m., on 800 AM CJBQ and cjbq.com.
You can click here to read the full box score from Friday and see highlights from the game below.