Former Yale All-American Shines in Post Season
ALLENTOWN, PA - A good professional goalie might make 94 saves in a very busy weekend. Former Yale goalie Alex Lyon did that in one game, saving all but one of the 95 shots in the longest game in AHL history on May 9 at Bojangles Coliseum in Charlotte, N.C. His team, the Lehigh Valley Phantoms, defeated the Charlotte Checkers 2-1 to take a 3-1 series lead.
The elapsed time of the five-overtime contest was 146 minutes and 48 seconds. It started at 7 p.m. and finished at 1:09 a.m. Lyon was in the zone for all of it.
Lyon had more saves in the game (94) than goals he gave up all season (71). Believe it or not, he was four saves short of the AHL record for saves in a game. Michael Leighton, the former Flyers netminder, who played for the Albany River Rats at the time, had 98 saves in a game versus the Philadelphia Phantoms on April 24, 2008. Lyon, however, did set a franchise record for saves, shattering the previous record of 65, set by Scott Munroe in the same game Michael Leighton set his record. That game in 2008 also previously held the record for the longest AHL game.
The one thing Lyon, has over Leighton, in terms of amazing performances, is that Lyon came away with a 2-1 win, and Leighton lost 3-2. Lyon can thank his Lehigh Valley Phantoms teammate, Alex Krushelnyski, who found the back of the net in the fifth overtime.
Lyon eventually led his team to a 4-1 series victory over a Checkers team that included former Yale captain Andrew Miller, in the second round of the Calder Cup Playoffs. In the series, Lyon started 4 of the 5 games, making 184 saves in total. He made more saves on Wednesday night than he did in the other 3 games he played, combined.
Lyon, who split time in the regular season and sat out two games thus far in the playoff run, is 6-1 in the 2018 post season. In the regular season he had a 2.75 goals against average and a .913 save percentage. During the regular season he also did a brief stint in the NHL with the Flyers, starting 7 games and posting a 4-2-1 record.
Lyon has crossed paths with a few former Bulldogs in this year's AHL playoffs. In the first round, he helped the Phantoms top Kenny Agostino's Providence Bruins. Agostino '14, the former Yale standout had 4 assists for Providence in that series.
There is a chance Lyon will meet up with another former Yale teammate, John Hayden '17, in the 2018 Calder Cup Finals. His team, the Rockford IceHogs, face the Texas Stars in the third round of the Calder Cup Playoffs.
Lyon and the Phantoms now take on the Toronto Marlies in a series starting Saturday in Toronto.
By Eric Harkins, Yale Sports Publicity Intern