Penguins skate past Pirates 4-2

LEWISTON, Maine – The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins used four goals by defenseman to beat the Portland Pirates 4-2 Saturday night. Brandon McMillan and Brandon Gormley scored for the Pirates, who saw their 7 game point streak at home snapped.

Simon Despres scored twice and Eric Hartzell made 24 saves to give the Pirates their first home loss since Dec. 7.WBS Penguins

The Penguins struck early, scoring just 1:07 into the game with a power play goal from Scott Harrington, a slap shot from the right point that made its way through bodies in front and into the back of the net.

Brandon McMillan had the answer for the Pirates at 12:28, beating Hartzell from down low. McMillan skated into the Penguins zone and flipped a shot from the bottom of the left circle that squeaked past Hartzell to tie the game.

But the Penguins took control from there, scoring three straight goals. Despres ripped a shot from the blue line at 8:46 of the second that gave the Penguins the 2-1 lead. At 17:35, Samuelsson received a cross-ice pass and blasted a one timer from the point that beat Mark Visentin to the blocker side.

In the third, Despres tallied his second goal of the game, another shot from the point that made its way through a screen in front and into the Portland net.

The Pirates looked to respond, getting a power play goal from Brandon Gormley at 9:32. After his initial shot was blocked, Gormley skated towards the net, jumping on a loose puck that had skittered off of Tobias Rieder’s stick and fired it into the open net. The goal gave the Pirates some momentum and they hounded the Penguins for the remainder of the game, but were unable to score again.

The Pirates fall to 15-15-1-6 on the season, dropping their first game at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee since December 7th, 2013. Mark Visentin made 18 saves but drops to 9-13-3.

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