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Phantoms take on IceCaps in hopes to improve before All-Star break

After dropping four in the last five games, the Phantoms hope to lock in a key- win before the AHL All-Star break.

Pat Jacoby Photography

The Phantoms traveled home to the Lehigh Valley last night after the Syracuse Crunch handed them their fourth loss in the last five games in a 4-2 setback. Putting an end to their busy schedule, the Phantoms will play their sixth game in nine days tonight as they welcome the IceCaps (18-20-5-1) to the PPL Center.

Since starting the new year 4-0 on the road, the Phantoms (19-16-4-1) have struggled, dropping four of their last five, and have been outscored 20-12.

21-year old Anthony Stolarz has stepped up to be No. 1 goaltender with the absence of Rob Zepp in the lineup, and while Stolarz says his confidence is always improving, he has gone 1-4 in 2015, including a 7-2 loss to Hershey where he relieved rookie Martin Ouellette after Ouellette allowed three goals on six shots in the first period.

Stolarz started in Syracuse last night in the Phantoms first matchup against the Crunch since they left the East Division to start this season. To avoid two starts in a row for Stolarz, Martin Ouellette will likely start tonight against the St. Johns IceCaps.

  • The Phantoms are 2-1 over the IceCaps this season, with their two wins coming back-to-back in St. Johns to cap off their successful road trip to start 2015. In their two consecutive wins Lehigh Valley outscored the IceCaps 10-4.
  • Terry Murray confirmed today that the projected return date for d-men Mark Alt and Shayne Gostisbehere should be mid to late February. Alt has been out with a broken hand since blocking a shot on Dec. 31. Alt has since removed his soft-cast since having surgery three-weeks ago.
  • The Phantoms sit in third place in the East with 43 points, six points behind division leader, Hershey, and no games in hand over the Bears, but three games in hand over Wilkes-Barre, who sits in second place in the East.