By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor
Joel Farabee thought he had his first NHL goal eight days ago in Chicago, only to have an offside challenge take it away. You knew it was coming soon for the 19-year-old.
The goal in Chicago would have made it a 4-1 Flyers lead. In New Jersey, he made his first one count at a most critical time.
Farabee's first NHL goal came with 8:31 remaining in the third period to tie the game at three and ultimately force overtime. The Flyers were able to finally get an edge in the shootout, defeating the Devils, 4-3, on Friday night from Prudential Center in Newark, NJ.
The Devils got on the board first taking advantage of an early power play. A familiar face provided the goal. Wayne Simmonds scored his first with the Devils, alone in front of the net at 6:24.
A nice rush allowed the Flyers to get the game tied. Travis Konecny led a charge into the offensive zone, fed to Sean Couturier, who put a pass to the wing for Oskar Lindblom. Lindblom went top shelf for his seventh goal of the season to tie the game at 10:39.
The Flyers had a 10-6 lead in shots after 20 minutes.
A fortunate bounce allowed the Flyers to take the lead at 7:26 of the second period. Lindblom set up Couturier for a chance. Couturier fired a slap shot that hit off a New Jersey defender and went in.
A power play late in the period allowed the Devils to tie the game back up at two. Nico Hischier made a move along the boards and, as he did, Travis Sanheim fell down. That allowed Hischier to find Sami Vatanen in the high slot and he fired high over Carter Hart to even the score.
Shots through two periods were in favor of the Flyers, 19-13.
At the midpoint of the third, the Devils broke through with the go-ahead goal. Taylor Hall got the puck at his own blue line and moved around Farabee. He then beat Justin Braun as the Devils looked to get numbers on the rush. Shayne Gostisbehere came across on a diving poke-check attempt. As Hall slowed down, Braun caught back up to him and leveled him with a cross-check. As Hall was falling, the puck went through the legs of Hart and in for the go-ahead goal at 9:58.
Less than two minutes later, Farabee finally got his first NHL goal. Michael Raffl carried the puck into the zone and went behind the net, attempting a wraparound. The puck came out into the slot for Farabee, who fired a quick shot that beat Mackenzie Blackwood to tie the game at three.
The Flyers had to kill off a penalty with under seven minutes to play and did.
In the overtime, Farabee nearly picked up the game-winning goal. Kevin Hayes circled the net, getting Blackwood out of position. Farabee was in front of the net to take the pass and had his initial shot stopped. The puck entered the net on the second chance, but Farabee had kicked the puck in, so it was disallowed.
The Devils had a lot of possession through the overtime, but the Flyers came away with the best chance in the final seconds of overtime. Claude Giroux took a shot that went off the glove of Blackwood and landed in the crease behind him. Gostisbehere whiffed trying to put in the rebound and then cleared the puck away on his backhand trying to get another whack at the puck.
In the shootout, Jake Voracek was stopped in the first round while Kyle Palmieri hit the post. Giroux hit the post in the second round while Jack Hughes lost control of the puck on his attempt. Finally in the third round, Couturier scored using the Peter Forsberg move. Hall was stopped by Hart the other way to end the game.
Hart finished with 23 saves on 26 shots. Blackwood had 28 saves on 31 shots. Lindblom and Couturier each had two points. For the Devils, Hall and Palmieri had two-point games.
The Flyers get right back into action on Saturday night, hosting the Toronto Maple Leafs at Wells Fargo Center at 7 p.m.