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Youngstown Phantoms Press Release

Romeo returns, but Phantoms fall to Ice 3-1

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - The Youngstown Phantoms welcomed Sean Romeo back to the lineup Friday night but the Indiana Ice spoiled the starting goaltender's season debut. The Ice tallied three goals on just 18 shots while the Phantoms wasted a pair of two-man power plays to fall 3-1 at the Covelli Centre.

Luke Stork scored the lone goal as the Phantoms (3-5-1, 7 points) dropped the first of a pair of home games slated for the weekend. They will host the Lincoln Stars Saturday night a 7:05 p.m. EST.

"You've got to have a short memory playing this game," Stork said. "Tomorrow's a new day and we've got to go at it."

The Ice (2-3-2, 6 points) took a 2-0 lead into the third period, but Stork was able to cut it in half six minutes in. Kyle Mackey initiated a quick counter attack and hit Sherwood in stride on the right boards. The Miami recruit gained the blue line and threaded a pass for Stork, who was streaking toward the net and he tapped it in past Ice goaltender Jason Palowski for his fourth goal of the season and second in as many games.

But Truman Reed was penalized for tripping on the following shift, putting the Phantoms down a man for the sixth time of the night and the Ice were able to capitalize. Timothy Shoup handed a puck off to Joshua Jacobs at the blue line and the Indiana defender hammered a slap shot through a screen and past Romeo to stretch the lead to 3-1 with 11:24 remaining in regulation.

Youngstown had a golden opportunity to make up ground later in the period with a 5-on-3 power play for more than a minute. However, the Phantoms, who wasted another extended two-man advantage in the second period, could not put one past Palowski and finished the night 0-for-8 total on the power play.

"We got outplayed on special teams," head coach Anthony Noreen said. "We probably went to the well too many times on the penalty kill. On the flip side, if you get two minute-plus 5-on-3's - at this level or higher - and you don't score, you don't deserve to win the game."

Jason Salvaggio put the Ice in front with just 1:09 remaining in the opening period when he stole a puck at the blue line beat Romeo over the shoulder with a wrist shot. Jacob Pritchard stretched the lead to 2-0 four minutes into the second with a one-timer off a pass from Jake Cass.

Romeo, who missed the entire preseason and all eight of the team's regular season games sidelined with a lower body injury, said that although he has 100-percent recovered, he wasn't as sharp as he'd like to be in his debut.

"To get back out there, it felt good, but it wasn't the result we wanted," Romeo said. "I felt a little rusty at the start . Normally I think I'd have that [first goal] but it was my first game back and I'm still getting into it."

Noreen said his team would need to use the game as a learning experience to prepare for Lincoln Saturday.

"The only thing that you can do is just keep teaching, especially with a young team and especially this early in the season," he said. "There's an end-goal. There's something that we're building for."

Phantoms by the Numbers

Shots - 18

Saves - 18

Power Play - 0-for-8

Penalty Kill - 5-for-6

Goals - Stork (4)

Assists - Mackey (1), Sherwood (4)

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