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New year, new momentum for Phantoms

2011-01-01T23:55:00Z 2011-01-02T00:05:18Z New year, new momentum for PhantomsBy Tim McManus tmcmanus@poststar.com Glens Falls Post-Star
January 01, 2011 11:55 pm  • 

GLENS FALLS -- No player epitomized the frustration that was the early season Adirondack Phantoms more than Greg Moore.

Perhaps fittingly, no player is now more closely identified with their sudden resurgence.

Moore scored for the fourth straight game, notching the game-winner with 3:54 remaining in the third as Adirondack beat the Albany Devils 2-1 on Saturday.

A crowd of 3,221 rose to its feet for an ovation at the Glens Falls Civic Center as the Phantoms celebrated their second straight win, third in their last four games, and fifth in last seven.

Six of the Phantoms' nine wins have come in the last 22 days.

"It's been a struggle this year and we've all been carrying that on our shoulders. And finally," Moore said. "The guys got a lot of character to get to where we are from where we came from. Everyone's breathing a lot easier."

Perhaps none more than Moore. A player with a track record of offensive success in his five AHL seasons, the free agent acquisition went scoreless in his first 32 games as a Phantoms.

The dam has broken in a big way as he has the Phantoms' longest goal streak of the season.

They're coming in big spots, too. Friday's tied the game in the third. Saturday's won it.

"It's a funny thing," Adirondack coach Joe Paterson said. "This guy's hit goal posts, he's had great scoring chances and he works so hard at practice. He's one of the first guys out shooting pucks all the time, and I think when he finally got the one, the whole bench stood up and was cheering for him because they know hard he works. Now it's almost like he's more relaxed around the net."

Moore missed an empty-net by inches in the final minute.

It's about the only thing that hasn't gone in for him lately.

"I've really gone to another level when it comes to my preparation, the little things away from the rink and at the rink at practice," Moore said. "I just wasn't happy with the way things are going and sometimes it just takes a little extra effort away from the games to get back."

For the second straight game, the Phantoms (9-25-2-0) rallied from a one-goal deficit. Albany led 1-0 after a Michael Swift power-play goal 32 seconds into the second. Michael Ryan got the equalizer 5:18 into the period, converting a back-door feed from Eric Welllwood in the left corner.

The Phantoms turned in a strong defensive effort for the second straight game, holding Albany to 19 shots for the game, including five in the first period and four in the third.

Albany (13-18-0-2) didn't get its first shot until more than eight minutes were gone from the third.

They also got strong goaltending again from rookie Brian Stewart, who won consecutive starts. He's stopped 61 of the last 64 shots he's faced.

"We know from the history of our games this year we're not really outscoring teams 6-2," Moore said. "So it's really big for us to be good in our own end. We've really been focusing on it."

Loose pucks: Defenseman Marc-Andre Bourdon appeared to lose consciousness briefly after falling in a first-period fight with Dan Kelly. He did not return.

Albany (13-18-0-2)                           0 1 0 - 1

Adirondack (9-25-2-0)                      0 1 1 - 2

First period - none. Penalties - Stoesz, Alb (fighting), 9:29; Clackson, Adk (fighting), 9:29; Kelly, Alb (fighting), 11:50; Bourdon, Adk (fighting), 11:50; Syvret, Adk (interference), 19:07.

Second period - 1, Albany, Swift 11 (Wiseman, Anderson), 0:32 (PP); 2, Adirondack, Ryan 4 (Wellwood), 5:18. Penalties - Stephenson, Adk (slashing), 6:32; Stoesz, Alb (roughing), 10:15; Young, Alb (fighting), 17:11; Testwuide, Adk (fighting), 17:11; Davison, Alb (cross-checking), 17:36.

Third period - 3, Adirondack, Moore 4 (Hamel, Pither), 16:06. Penalties -- Zajac, Alb (charging), 3:09; Davison Alb (slashing), 9:38.

Shots on goal - Albany 5-10-4-19; Adirondack 9-13-9-31.

Power play opportunities - Albany 1 / 2; Adirondack 0 / 4.

Goalies - Albany, Frazee 9-10-2 (31 shots-29 saves); Adirondack, Stewart 2-5-0 (19 shots-18 saves).

Referee - Brown.

A - 3,221

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