Trenton Update: 11/23-11/29

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The Trenton Titans lost two of their three games this week, as their record dropped to 7-9-1 to put them two points ahead of both the Wheeling Nailers and Evansville IceMen, who are in last place in the Eastern Conference.

The Titans played both squads below them in the Eastern Conference standings this week and went 1-1-0. Despite being ranked so low in the conference a pair of wins this week can help Trenton gain ground, as they play a team that is sixth in the standings, but only four points ahead of them.

The Titans’ lone win of the week came last Friday with a 3-2 victory over the IceMen at the Sun National Bank Center. Down 2-0 just 8:05 into the contest, thanks to goals from Patrick Kennedy and Trent Vogelhuber, Trenton fired back with three unanswered tallies to beat the affiliate of the St. Louis Blues and Columbus Blue Jackets. Andrew Johnston notched his first goal with the Titans on a power play 4:02 into the middle stanza on helpers from Stephen Schultz and Andrew Conboy, while Bryan Haczyk potted his fourth of the year to even the score a little over 11 minutes later. With Schultz in the box early in the third period, Andy Bohmbach converted on a short-handed chance for his seventh of the season and the Titans’ third one-goal victory of the campaign. Scott Wedgewood stopped 25-of-27 shots for his first win in nearly a month, as his record improved to 5-3-0.

The following day the Titans suffered a 3-0 loss to the Greenville Road Warriors in Trenton. The game was tied after 40 minutes, but the New York Rangers’ affiliate produced three goals in the final stanza to even the season series between the clubs at 1-1-0. Scott Pitt opened the scoring with his fourth goal of the season at the 4:01 mark of the third period, while Jeremy Gouchie and Marc-Olivier Vallerand found the back of the net as well. Bryan Hince had the 33-save shutout for the Road Warriors, as the Titans were shut out for the first time since they were blanked 7-0 by Mark Owuya and the Reading Royals on March 24th. Late in the game, a brawl broke out on the ice which resulted in the game misconducts of Conboy and Kelsey Wilson. Conboy was suspended one game for starting the brawl, while Wilson was suspended two games and fined for throwing punches at an unsuspecting player after things were settling down.

Thanks to Hockeyarchives

On Wednesday, the Titans traveled to WesBanco Arena and were dealt a 3-2 loss to the Wheeling Nailers. Bohmbach’s eighth tally of the season gave the Titans a 2-1 lead for all of 13 seconds in the middle stanza before Carl Sneep, who played a game for the Pittsburgh Penguins last year, tied the contest with his first of 2012-2013. Just before the three-minute mark of the final period, Wheeling deposited the game-winning goal due to the actions of two former Titans. Luke Pither set up Peter Lenes for his second goal of the season, as Scott Darling stopped 19 of 21 for the victory. Connor Goggin produced his first regular season goal in the ECHL to tie the game at one early in the second period, while Ryan Hayes had a pair of assists to improve his point total to three in his six games with Trenton this season. The loss dropped the Titans to 3-3-1 in one-goal games this season.

Conboy and Wilson are second and third in the ECHL amongst penalty minute leaders, while Derek Couture of the Ontario Reign leads the league with 90 PIMs for the Los Angeles Kings’ affiliate. Conboy has been involved in five fights this year including Saturday’s scrum, while Wilson has earned three. Although Conboy has been included in more bouts this year, Wilson is no stranger to the penalty box, as he has three professional seasons with at least 100 PIMs and two season with at least 215 PIMs. Conboy has registered five assists for the Titans, while Wilson hasn’t recorded a point yet as a Titan.

In player movement, the Titans put one player on the 21-day Injured Reserve and traded another player to a recent opponent.

Defenseman Mike Banwell has been placed on the 21-day IR. With one assist and a minus-2 rating in 10 games this year, Banwell’s last appearance for Trenton was in the club’s 4-3 shootout loss to the Reading Royals on November 11th. Banwell played in 11 games for the Titans last season and has also spent time with both the Albany Devils and Worcester Sharks of the AHL.

Jim McKenzie, who was on the roster but didn’t play a single game for Trenton, was traded to the IceMen early in the week. It is believed the Titans received future considerations for McKenzie, but nothing has been confirmed.

Trenton returns home to host a pair of games against the Elmira Jackals, the Ottawa Senators’ affiliate, tomorrow night and Sunday afternoon. The Titans are 1-1-0 against a club that features former Adirondack Phantoms Andrew Rowe, Rob Bellamy, and Jean Bourbeau. The squad also boasts former Titans Jordon Southorn and Jordan Pietrus. With a 9-7-1 record, the Jackals are sixth in the Eastern Conference with 19 points and are second in goals against with 42 in 17 games. Dustin Gazley has scored the most points during the series for either team with three assists.