HOUSTON, Tex. -- The Binghamton Senators completed a turnaround season by capturing the 2011 Calder Cup championship with a 3-2 win over the Houston Aeros at the Toyota Center.
The Senators had missed the playoffs for five consecutive seasons entering the 2010-11 campaign but finished it by earning the city of Binghamton's first championship in 29 years of hosting an American Hockey League franchise.
Binghamton won the series 4-2, taking the final three games in a row and four of the last five after dropping the series opener. The Senators set an AHL record with 10 road victories this postseason (10-2) and finished 15-4 in their final 19 playoff games overall after falling into a 3-1 deficit against the Manchester Monarchs in the first round.
Kurt Kleinendorst, in his first season as Senators head coach, guided his club to the Eastern Conference's crossover playoff berth after finishing fifth in the East Division with a regular-season record of 42-30-3-5 (92 points).
Nineteen-year-old rookie goaltender Robin Lehner won the Jack A. Butterfield Trophy as the most valuable player of the 2011 Calder Cup Playoffs, finishing 14-4 with a 2.10 goals-against average, a .939 save percentage, and three shutouts in 19 appearances this spring.