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5 Observations: Flyers’ Young Players Shine in Win Over Ducks

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Morgan Frost, Philadelphia Flyers
Flyers center Morgan Frost maneuvers against the Ducks in Monday's game at the Honda Center. Photo: AP.

In 2017, Philadelphia Flyers general manager Ron Hextall traded Brayden Schenn to St. Louis for a pair of first-round draft picks that turned out to be Joel Farabee and Morgan Frost.

So far, the trade has benefited the Blues more than the Flyers, but it’s still too early to fully evaluate the deal.

Schenn, now 31, is a proven center who has won a Cup with the Blues. Farabee and Frost are young players still trying to prove themselves.

The two Flyers forwards made a statement Monday, with each scoring first-period goals to trigger the Flyers’ 4-1 win in Anaheim.

Goaltender Sam Ersson also made a statement, nearly recording his first NHL shutout in just his fourth game.

Philly (14-17-7) concluded the first three-game California road sweep in franchise history. The Flyers also defeated San Jose and Los Angeles on the impressive trip. Anaheim (10-24-4) lost for the 14th time in its last 18 games.

Here are five quick observations:

1. Goaltender Sam Ersson played like he wants to stay in Philadelphia.

Carter Hart passed his concussion-protocol test, but coach John Tortorella wanted to see Ersson again.

Ersson, 23, didn’t disappoint.

Making his fourth straight start, the unflappable Ersson was brilliant as he stopped 28 of 29 shots. He had a shutout until Ryan Strome scored with 39.6 seconds left.

Ersson made nine of his saves against the ever-present Trevor Zegras, including a second-period stop as Zegras tried to finish a two-on-one with a backhander.

It will be interesting to see if the Flyers keep Ersson on the roster and try to sneak Felix Sandstrom through waivers when they return home.

2. Joel Farabee scored a much-needed goal.

The 22-year-old winger showed lots of poise as he gathered a puck in front and calmly beat John Gibson with a backhander. That gave the Philadelphia Flyers a 1-0 lead with 12:18 left in the first.

The Flyers hope it gives Farabee (two points) a confidence boost. It was his seventh goal and his second in the last 16 games.

“Just a scramble in front and a little lucky on my part,” he said on NBC Sports Philadelphia after the opening 20 minutes. “We had a good first period and hopefully we can close this out.”

They did.

3. Morgan Frost stayed hot, with a little help from the Ducks’ goalie.

Frost scored on a wrist shot from just above the left circle to give the Flyers a 2-0 lead with 9:24 to go in the first. Anaheim goalie John Gibson will want that one back.

The 23-year-old center has nine points, including five goals, in his last 10 games. He has eight goals and is on a 17-goal pace.

4. Travis Konecny, Noah Cates are rolling.

Konecny (two points) scored a goal for the fourth straight game, taking a gorgeous feed from a patient Kevin Hayes (two assists) and finishing off a two-on-one early in the second. The goal put the Flyers ahead, 3-0.

Noah Cates had his second assist of the night, giving the 23-year-old center consecutive multi-point games.

As for Konecny, 25, he has a staggering 14 goals in his last 18 games.

5. Defenseman Cam York had a successful homecoming.

York, who turns 22 on Thursday, continued his strong play since being recalled from the AHL’s Phantoms.Β  He grew up close to the Honda Center, and his parents were at Monday’s game.

They watched him collect an assist — his sixth in the last seven games — while playing on the third pairing, next to Justin Braun. York had been playing on the top pairing recently.

“I had 20 or 30 people here, and it’s a special night for me,” said York, who was plus-2 on Monday.

Breakaways

The Flyers have a three-game winning streak for the first time since they won the first three games of the season. … Scott Laughton made it 4-0 with a wraparound goal in the third, his third tally in the last four games. … Travis Sanheim and Rasmus Ristolainen each blocked three shots. Ristolainen went back on the top pairing with Ivan Provorov. … Braun had been a healthy scratch in the previous three games. … The Flyers improved to 7-8-6 on the road. … Anaheim played the fifth game of a 10-game homestand, the longest in franchise history. … The Flyers host Arizona on Thursday.

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