Empty Netter Assists - 11-08-14

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .


-“If you look at my [career] numbers, probably not many people, including myself, had me penciled in in the top six. But I always believed in my skills set.” - Blake Comeau.

-The third line is clicking.

-Steve Downie is on pace to record the third-most penalty minutes in franchise history.

-Two goals, including one in overtime, by Jayson Menga gave the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins a 3-2 comeback win against the rival Hershey Bears. Taylor Chorney had a goal and an assist for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton while teammate Derrick Pouliot recorded two assists. Matt Murray made 14 saves in the victory.


-“If I would have missed that one, I don’t think I would be in here right now. I’d be packing my bags.” -Megna on his goal.

-Beau Bennett made his season debut with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.

-If you're wondering what Bennett looks like in a Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins jersey, here you go:

-Matia Marcantuoni had a hat trick for the Wheeling Nailers in a 6-3 loss to the Evansville IceMen Friday.

-Happy 55th birthday to former Penguins defenseman Marc Chorney. A sixth-round pick in 1979, Chorney spent parts of four seasons in Pittsburgh. As a rookie in 1980-81, Chorney appeared in eight games and netted seven points. In the 1981 postseason, he played in two games and recorded one assist. His first full NHL season was 1981-82. He saw action in 60 games and scored seven points. He appeared in all five of the Penguins' postseason games that spring but failed to record a point. In 1982-83, he played in 67 games and scored eight points. After four games and one assist in 1983-84, Chorney was traded to the Kings in exchange for a draft pick. In 139 regular season games with the Penguins, Chorney scored 23 points. In seven playoff games, he recorded one assist. His son is Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins defenseman Taylor Chorney.

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Big Ben's High School Highlight Reel; Bryant's potential; Pens' well wishes

Written by Dan Gigler on .

Last night during the 'Way Back When' Friday Night Live broadcast, MaxPreps posted a video of Ben Roethlisberger's highlights from his senior year of high school football -- the only year he played quarterback -- and needless to say, they are absolutely dazzling. 

At 6'5" and 180-pounds, he's a string bean but you can see all of the attributes, specifically the mobility and improvisation that would make him a superstar. In that senior season, he'd throw for over 4,000 yards and 54 touchdowns -- records all.  

Fun fact: though he's thrown 6 touchdowns in two consecutive games in the NFL, he once threw 8 in a single game in high school. Something to shoot for against the Jets. 

Check it out: 

***** A good read from the mathematical modeling madmen over at NumberFire about the fantasy football potential of Martavis Bryant.  

Key takeway: "I’d make sure to scoop him off the waiver wire if he is somehow still available in your redraft league. I’d also consider him a strong keeper candidate, a must-own in dynasty leagues, and definitely someone to remember when making your sleepers list for 2015 fantasy drafts."

***** Finally, a well wish from the Penguins, fresh off a win over the Winnipeg Jets, to the Steelers, who will  take on the New York Jets Sunday:

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Downie moving up - 11-07-14

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

In the course of racking up 22 penalty minutes last night, including getting a 10-minute misconduct while serving another 10-minute misconduct in the penalty box, Steve Downie inflated his season total of penalty minutes to 49, tops in the league.

That equates to a pace of 4.08 penalty minutes a game.

How many penalty minutes is that relatively speaking? Last season, Tanner Glass, no shrinking violet, led the Penguins with 90 penalty minutes. Downie already has well past half of that.

If Downie can maintain this pace, a big "if" when one considers factors such as injuries, Downie will finish the season with 335 penalty minutes. That would equate to the third highest total in franchise history:

Player, Position Season Penalty
Paul Baxter, D 1981-82 409
Dave Schultz, LW 1977-78 378
Steve Downie, RW 2014-15 335-*
Pat Price, D 1981-82 322
Gary Rissling, LW 1983-84 297
Jay Caufield, RW 1988-89 285
Kevin Stevens, LW 1991-92 254
Rick Tocchet, RW 1992-93 252
Ulf Samuelsson, D 1992-93 249
Paul Baxter, D 1982-83 238

*-Projected total.

(Photo: Gene J. Puskar/Associated Press)

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Live Friday PIAA blog - Central Catholic wins, 28-0

Written by Mike White on .

Live blog from the WPIAL Class AAAA quarterfinal game between Woodland Hills and Central Catholic. For scores, photos and notes from other quarterfinal games, look to the right at the Twitter account for @PGVarsityXtra. If you have a note or score, tweet it with #wpial


Central Catholic gets 28-yard TD from Vinny Emmanuele. 

9:42 Woodland Hills turns over on downs. QB Jeremiah Jones on fourth-and-4, runs only 3 yards.

Great game in AAAA. NA leads Penn-Trafford, 31-28.

9:38 Woodland Hills. WH gets to CC 34.


9:31 Woodland Hills takes over at its own 46.

9:25 Woodland Hills picks up a first down and then punts.


Central gets another TD without its offense doing anything. Woodland Hills RB Miles Sanders hit hard, fumbles, Rasahd Wheeler picks it off the turf and returns it 25 yards for TD. MacZura kick. 14-0 with 6:10 left in third.

9:14 Three and out for Central. Another excellent punt by Central's Mitch MacZura putting Woodland Hills inside its 20. WH ball at 18. Still 7-0 with 6:58 left in half.

9:06 - Second half under way.

I just saw a tweet that Ben DiNucci has 284 yards passing at halftime. It's all about the Benjamin.

Here is a surprise. South Park leads South Fayette, 14-13, at halftime. Great job by Tom Loughran and his staff. Not saying South Park will win, but most people thought this would be a blowout like it was earlier in the season.

Another blowout for Clairton. Bears lead, 46-7

Thomas Jefferson leads Mars, 14-7, in the third quarter.


Central Catholic two first downs in first half. Woodland Hills two first downs. Miles Sanders had 47-yard run on final play of half.

8:37 STOP THE PRESSES!!!!! Woodland Hills with a first down. First of the game. Miles Sanders 12-yard run.

I thought Neshannock-Jeannette could be a good one. Neshannock leads, 19-14.

8:31 Central Catholic now at Woodland Hills 30. Central has three first downs.

South Side Side Beaver giving North Catholic a tussle. 7-6 NC leads.

West Allegheny has taken a 23-14 lead on Franklin Regional.

McKeesport leads Plum, 13-3.

Mars and Thomas Jefferson tied, 7-7

8:24 Woodland Hills punts again after three an out. Still without a first down. c'mon, man.

Penn-Trafford scores. 10-7 North Allegheny leads.

8:21 Central defensive coordinator Dave Fleming told me before the season that this might be best defensive line Central has had in long time. It's showing tonight.

8:20 And we have our eighth punt of the game.

Seton-LaSalle leads Highlands, 14-7

8:16 Hey, a first down. Central Catholic now at 50.

Pine-Richland leads Altoona, 14-0

Central Valley winning, 21-0

8:13 This is a recording. Three and out for Woodland Hills. 9 minutes left in half and only one first down in game.

8:09 Both of these defenses are top notch. Another three and out for Central. Still waiting for first complete pass.

Neshannock takes 13-7 lead Jeannette.

North Allegheny up on Penn-Trafford, 10-0

Franklin Regional back ahead of West Allegheny, 14-9


8:03 Johnny on the spot again. Johnny Petrishen INT at own 47.

West Allegheny goes on top of Franklin Regional, 9-7

8:00 Neither team much of a passing game again. Almost end of first quarter and yet to see completed pass.

7:59 Central Catholic three and out.

McKeesport leading Plum , 7-3

7:56 Woodland Hills three and out again. At least they didn't kick this time to Petrishen. 

Washington leading Apollo-Ridge, 8-7.

7:53 Mitch MacZura 40-yard field goal attempt for Central, no good.

North Allegheny leading Penn-Trafford 7-0.

Neshannock and Jeannette tied, 7-3.

Hmmm. Franklin Regional leading West Allegheny, 7-3


Do teams not read? Not watch film? Johnny Petrishen has returned a number of punts for TDs the past two years. But Woodland Hills punted right to him. Petrishen returned it 55 yards for TD. 

On the ensuing kickoff, Jihad Brown fumbled and Central's Bryan Glover recovered at Woodland Hills 36.

7:39 Central Catholic receive.

Jeannette up on Neshannock, 7-0

Kazeon Pugh 56-yard TD run. Aliquippa leads Mount Pleasant 8-0.

Pine-Richland has jumped ahead of Altoona 7-0. Road to Heinz is paved for P-R. First play DiNucci 65-yard TD pass to Merhaut.

7:20 - Cold night. Game on TV. Certainly not a good crowd. Not even medium size crowd. This is 15 minutes before kickoff.

Central Cath. crowd


There could have been brothers going against each other in this game. Jaymier Scarbrough is a 6-2, 310-pound senior lineman at Woodland Hills. Jordan Scarbrough is a 6-1, 280-pound defensive lineman for Central Catholic. But we have received word that Jordan Scarbrough will not play. He is not with the team.


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Empty Netter Assists - 11-07-14

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .


-The Post-Gazette's recap from last night's game. "They're a big team, a physical team. And I thought we responded well." - Steve Downie on the Jets.

-The Winnipeg Free Press' recap. "Their goals were just simple breakdowns. They got some chances and they buried them. That was really it. They weren’t controlling the game when they scored those goals." - Jets forward Blake Wheeler on the Penguins.

-The Associated/Canadian Press' recap. “You get into a shootout and we’ve got a couple guys that know a thing or two about scoring goals." - Brandon Sutter on Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin.


-Mike Lange's goal calls.

-Robert Bortuzzo versus Wheeler:

-Simone Despres versus Winnipeg's Evander Kane:

-Kane was pumped after this fight:

-Craig Adams versus Winnipeg's Adam Lowry:

-Happy times in Winnipeg:

-Mike Johnston speaks:

-Sidney Crosby speaks:

-Brandon Sutter speaks:

-Craig Adams appeared in his 300th consecutive game.

-Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins forward Josh Archibald is expected to make his season debut this weekend after recovering from a shoulder injury.

-“He has to leave no doubt that he’s a full-time National Hockey League player. It’s strong work ethic. It’s really being a difference maker out there. That’s an important thing, whether it’s coming up with big plays offensively, being really strong and using his size. He wants to make sure for his career and his situation that there’s no doubt that Pittsburgh should recall him.” - Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins coach John Hynes on Beau Bennett's assignment to the AHL.

-After the Jump: Another spectacular goal by Vladimir Tarasenko.

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