The Bridgeport Sound Tigers lost to the Albany Devils Friday night by a final score of 2-1. Jesse Graham notched his first career professional goal in the second period, but Kelly Zajac had a pair of markers for the Devils. Philippe Trudeau made the start in net for the Sound Tigers and made 25 saves.
The game stayed scoreless through most of the first period, but a unfortunate bounce for the Sound Tigers lead to the first goal of the contest. Dan Kelly threw a puck out in front that deflected up in the air. Alan Quine tried to bat the puck away from his goal, but in doing so, sent it off of Zajac and past Trudeau to make it a 1-0 game.
The Sound Tigers evened the score in the second period with a power-play goal in the late stages of the second period. The Devils took two penalties within 24 seconds of each other and gave the Sound Tigers an extended two-man advantage. Graham and Aaron Ness inched in from the point and Ness sent the puck across Graham, who blasted a slap shot past Devils goaltender Keith Kinkaid and in to tie the score at one.
Zajac’s second goal of the game came early in the third period and gave the Devils a lead they would never relinquish. With the puck behind the Sound Tigers net, Stefan Matteau sent it out in front towards Zajac. Zajac was able to bat the puck out of mid-air and beat Trudeau to give the Devils a 2-1 lead.
The Sound Tigers pulled Trudeau in favor of the extra attacker with 1:40 left in the third, but were unable to sustain enough pressure to pick up the game-tying goal. The Devils hung on for the win in the final game of the season series between the two teams.
The Sound Tigers return home to face the Adirondack Phantoms Saturday night and the Springfield Falcons Sunday afternoon in the final two home games of the 2013-14 season.
3rd star: Dan Kelly (ALB)
2nd star: Keith Kinkaid (ALB)
1st star: Kelly Zajac (ALB)
Season Series: The Sound Tigers finished the 10-game season series against Albany with a record of 3-7-0-0. They lost the first four, but finished the last six games against the Devils with a .500 record.
Debuts: Justin Hickman signed an ATO with the Sound Tigers Friday morning and made his professional debut. He previously played four seasons in the WHL with the Seattle Thunderbirds.
Staying Out of the Box: The Sound Tigers were assessed just one penalty in Friday’s game, a high-sticking minor against Dimitry Antipin.