Alt’s heroics lead Phantoms to crucial victory


Photo: Nina Weiss/Flyerdelphia

After falling to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Saturday night, the team they are chasing in the standings, to say that Sunday evening's tilt against the Springfield Falcons was a must was an understatement.

Cue Lehigh Valley Phantoms defenseman Mark Alt. 

Alt's rising slapshot with 2.8 seconds left in regulation secured a massive two points in the standings as the Phantoms downed Springfield, 5-4.

In what was a penalty-filled first period, Cole Bardreau's ninth gave the Phantoms an early lead. Parked in the slot, Bardreau took a feed from behind the net from Chris Conner and wired a wrist shot past Marek Langhamer. Taylor Leier also assisted on power play goal at 7:18. 

The lead was short lived, as Corey Potter collected his fifth of the season with a point shot through traffic on the power play at 14:10. Less than five minutes after that, Greg Carey, who scored Friday in Allentown, got his 23rd on the power play at 19:01. Dustin Jeffrey found Carey at the edge of the crease and he forced the puck behind Anthony Stolarz to give the Falcons a lead they would take to the locker room.

Carey potted his second of the game on the rush midway through the second frame to put Springfield up by two.

As they have so many times this season, this team didn't quit. Davis Drewiske found Tyrell Goulbourne racing up the wing with under a minute left in the period and it led to his seventh of the season to pull Lehigh Valley within one headed to the locker room. 

In the third, Craig Cunningham's 14th of the season from Carey and Jeffrey at 39 seconds put the Falcons' back up by two. 

Adam Comrie took a feed from Petr Straka and ripped a shot off the crossbar from the center point and the puck went in to cut the lead to one at 4:38. It was Comrie's third tally of the season. 

Just like Saturday night against Bridgeport, the Phantoms found a way to tie the game in the late stages. Following a turnover by former Phantom Steven Delisle behind the net, Straka found Phil DeSimone in front for his third goal since joining Lehigh Valley in late January with 4:06 remaining.

That goal set up Alt's magic.

With the clock winding down, DeSimone tapped the puck from the half wall to the right point, and Alt's laster went just under the crossbar to give Lehigh Valley a gigantic victory.

Notes: Lehigh Valley rolled out the same lineup that played last night.

Standings Watch: With the regulation win and Providence's 6-3 win over Hershey, the Phantoms sit six points back of the final playoff spot in the Atlantic Division. Providence has two games in hand. The Phantoms are also now seven points back of Bridgeport after their 5-2 loss to Albany on Sunday.

3 Stars: 3) SPR-Dustin Jeffrey (3 Assists) 2) LV-Tyrell Goulbourne (Goal) 1) SPR-Greg Carey (2 Goals)

Up Next: The Phantoms return home on Friday to face the Hartford Wolf Pack at 7:05 p.m.

Brent Baldwin is Lehigh Valley Phantoms beat writer for Flyerdelphia. Follow him on Twitter @BBFlyerdelphia.  

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