Daniel Sprong found himself on an early breakaway. And Wilkes-Barre/Scranton was on the board just 54 seconds into the game.
The rest of the night in Allentown didn’t go so well for the Penguins.
Lehigh Valley stormed back in Friday’s battle of Atlantic Division leaders, as the Phantoms earned a 5-2 victory to pull three points ahead of the Penguins (25-12-13-1) atop the division. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, however, has three games in hand and has a higher winning percentage.
The Penguins lost despite holding the lead twice in the first period on goals by Sprong and Zach Aston-Reese.
From there, however, Phantoms coach Scott Gordon had seen enough, pulling veteran goalie Dustin Tokarski in favor of Alex Lyon. The move paid off, as Lyon stoned the Penguins the rest of the way, stopping all 26 shots that came his way.
T.J. Brennan scored the game-winner on a two-on-none rush midway through the second period. Nic Aube-Kubel scored twice for Lehigh Valley, while Greg Carey and Mike Vecchione picked up the other goals.
Despite the return of Tristan Jarry from Pittsburgh, it was Anthony Peters who started between the pipes for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, stopping 25 shots.
The Penguins’ power play went 0-for-5 on the night. Lehigh Valley was 0-for-3 on the man-advantage.
Having now closed a four-game road trip, the Penguins return home on Saturday night to host Binghamton at 7:05.