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Ice Hockey Spotlight:
Phantoms Win Fifth Straight
Philly Takes 3-2 Win Over Providence

Friday, March 3, 2006

By Mike Thornton
Philadelphia Phantoms Correspondent

PHILADELPHIA - The Phantoms upped their winning streak to a season-high five games Friday night, jumping out to a 3-0 lead and then holding on for a 3-2 win over the Providence Bruins at the Wachovia Spectrum.

Philadelphia started the scoring on the power play with 4:51 left in the first. John Slaney found Kiel McLeod in the right circle, who fired home a laser past Bruins goaltender Brian Eklund. Then, with just 49 seconds left in the period, Jim Campbell deflected home a shot from the point by David Printz to give the Phantoms the two-goal lead.

The Phantoms took a three-goal advantage at 12:10 of the second period. Slaney snapped a wrister from the slot that popped out of Eklund's glove and hovered in front of Stefan Ruzicka. At the left post, he swatted home his 10th for the 3-0 lead.

It wasn't until 16:43 in the second that the Bruins finally found the net. After a goalmouth scramble, Michael Schutte uncovered the puck and slapped it in from 15 feet to make the score 3-1. Then Providence made it interesting with a power play tally at 7:36 of the third period. The puck came out of a jumble in the left corner and slid into the slot right onto Nathan Robinson's stick. Robinson finished the play to make it a one-goal game, but the Bruins came no closer.

Houle picked up his fourth consecutive win with 25 saves on 27 Bruins shots, while Eklund absorbed the loss with 27 saves on 30 Philadelphia opportunities. McLeod and Campbell received first and second star honors, respectively.

The Phantoms will look to extend their winning streak as they travel to the GIANT Center on Saturday to take on the Hershey Bears. They will return home to the Wachovia Spectrum on Sunday, March 5 to host the Toronto Marlies at 6:05. The first 4,000 kids 14 and under at Sunday's game will receive a Championship Puzzle Bank courtesy of Wachovia. Also, Elmo will make the trip from Sesame Street to drop the first puck, and a Phantoms win will make each ticket stub good for a free ticket to the March 15 game vs. Hartford.

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