Gerbe's Two Goals Lead Monsters Past Phantoms, 4-2

Siebenaler, Letestu tally goals, Berube stops 32 shots in road victory

The Cleveland Monsters defeated the Lehigh Valley Phantoms on Saturday night at PPL Center in Allentown, PA by a final score of 4-2. With the win, the Monsters improve to 13-9-3-0 overall this season and with 29 points, currently sit alone in second place in the AHL’s North Division standings.

The Phantoms opened the scoring in the first period when Connor Bunnaman poked home a power-play goal at 4:06 to give Lehigh Valley an early 1-0 advantage. Cleveland responded later in the frame when Monsters captain Nathan Gerbe tallied a power-play goal at 12:12 with assists from Adam Clendening and Paul Bittner to draw even with the Phantoms, 1-1.

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In the middle frame, the Monsters claimed their first lead of the contest thanks to a five-on-five missile from just inside the blue line courtesy of defenseman Blake Siebenaler. His first goal of the season at 7:36, with assists from Tommy Cross and Vitaly Abramov, pushed Cleveland in front for the first time on the evening, 2-1.

Cleveland extended their lead to 3-1 when Gerbe picked up his second power-play goal of the game at 8:14 of the third period on set-ups once again from Bittner and Clendening. The Phantoms answered at 10:19 thanks to a power-play goal of their own, this one from Colin McDonald to climb within one score, 3-2. The Monsters pulled away for good when Mark Letestu closed the scoring for the evening, netting an even-strength goal at 15:10 with assists from Sonny Milano and Cross to secure Cleveland’s 4-2 road win.

Monsters goaltender Jean-Francois Berube stopped 32 of the 34 shots he faced to improve to 9-7-2 on the season, while Phantoms net-minder Alex Lyon stopped 37 of the 41 pucks he faced to drop to 3-4-0 on the year.

Next up for the Monsters, it’s a Friday road matchup versus the Rochester Americans with full coverage, live from Blue Cross Arena in Rochester, NY, underway at 7:00 pm on Alt 99.1, AHLTV and the Monsters Hockey Network.