Sound Tigers Host Charlotte, Springfield This Weekend
DATE TIME OPPONENT FOLLOW
THE STORY COMING IN
The Bridgeport Sound Tigers (7-7-0-0), proud AHL affiliate of the New York Islanders, return to Webster Bank Arena this weekend to host the Charlotte Checkers (10-6-0-0) and Springfield Thunderbirds (6-11-1-0). Saturday's 7 p.m. matchup against Charlotte will be the first head-to-head meeting in Bridgeport since March 18, 2011 (3-2 shootout loss), before the weekend concludes on Sunday at 3 p.m. against Springfield.
Last time out, the Sound Tigers went beyond regulation for the first time this season and earned a 2-1 overtime victory against the Hartford Wolf Pack at the XL Center on Wednesday. Devon Toews scored both goals, including the overtime winner with less than five seconds remaining, while Christopher Gibson backstopped the effort with a season-high 38 saves. Gibson has now won four of his last five outings and ranks seventh among AHL netminders with a 2.13 goals-against-average.
TIGERS VS. CHECKERS
Saturday's game is the third of eight matchups between the Sound Tigers and Checkers this season, and the first of four meetings at Webster Bank Arena. The season series is currently knotted at 1-1-0-0 after a two-game split in North Carolina on Oct. 13-14. Bridgeport earned its first win of the year against Charlotte with a 5-3 victory on Oct. 13, highlighted by a two-goal effort from Scott Eansor. Less than 24 hours later, the Checkers bounced back with a 3-2 win, in which Nick Schilkey scored his first pro goal and Lucas Wallmark notched a season-high three assists. Bridgeport is 1-3-0-2 all-time against Charlotte. Click here for tickets.
VIEW FROM CHARLOTTE
The Checkers' high-powered offense was unable to break through on Friday night in Springfield as the team suffered its third straight loss, a 4-0 setback against the T-Birds. Charlotte outshot Springfield 32-18, but rookie goaltender Sam Montembeault posted his first pro shutout and blanked the league's third-best offense. The Checkers are led by second-year forward Lucas Wallmark with 15 points and 11 assists, while third-year winger Valentin Zykov has a team-high nine goals in 16 games. Charlotte concludes an eight-game road trip tonight that took them through Belleville, Utica, Syracuse and Springfield.
TIGERS VS. T-BIRDS
Sunday's matinee matchup will mark the second of 10 matchups between the Sound Tigers and Thunderbirds this season, and the second of five meetings at Webster Bank Arena. Bridgeport leads the season series 1-0-0-0 following a 3-2 win at home on Nov. 4. Casey Bailey's first goal with the Sound Tigers help up as the game-winner, while Tanner Fritz and Josh Ho-Sang also scored. Bridgeport went 7-4-0-1 against Springfield in 2016-17 and 3-3-0-0 in those games at Webster Bank Arena. Nine of the 12 matchups last season were separated by two goals or less. Click here for tickets.
VIEW FROM SPRINGFIELD
The Thunderbirds won their fourth consecutive game on Friday with a 4-0 victory against the Charlotte Checkers. Henrik Haapala, Francois Beauchemin, Thomas Schemitsch and Mikkel Aagaard all scored and Sam Montembeault made 32 saves for his first career shutout. Alexander Grenier also contributed with three helpers and now leads the T-Birds with 14 assists and 18 points in 18 games this season. Springfield is off on Saturday before making the trek to Bridgeport on Sunday afternoon.
Tanner Fritz assisted on both goals in Wednesday's overtime win at Hartford and now leads the Sound Tigers with 11 helpers and 14 points this season. The third-year forward also leads Bridgeport with six multi-point games in just 12 appearances. There have only been four contests this season that Fritz hasn't logged a point and the team is 3-0-0-0 when he scores, and 5-1-0-0 when he earns multiple points.
The Sound Tigers penalty kill has been sensational over the last four weeks and enters tonight's game 33 for its last 35 (94.3%), dating back to Oct. 27. In addition, the team's penalty kill is 26 for 27 (96.3%) over its last six outings. It currently ranks tied for fourth in the AHL.
SHOT THROUGH THE HEART
The Sound Tigers have recorded 29 or more shots in each of their last six games, including a season-high 44 shots in two of their last three contests. That production has moved Bridgeport to fifth in the AHL with more than 32 shots/game on average. Devon Toews has 18 shots in his last three games, while Casey Bailey paces the Sound Tigers overall this season with 50 (eight on Wednesday). Bridgeport has outshot its opponents in 11 of 14 games year.
Eight of the Sound Tigers last 15 goals have been scored by defensemen... Gibson is one appearance from tying Stephon Williams (2015-17) for seventh place on the team's all-time games played list for netminders... Ross Johnston is tied for the league lead with 53 penalty minutes... Scott Eansor is tied for fourth among rookie goal-scorers (seven)… Sebastian Aho is tied for the league lead with three game-winning goals and leads all AHL defensemen with six goals this season.
NHL: New York Islanders (10-6-2): Next at Tampa Bay Lightning - Tonight, 7 p.m. ET
ECHL: Worcester Railers (6-6-1-0): Next vs. Manchester - Sunday, 3:05 p.m. ET
Hockey and Hops: Enjoy a pre-game craft beer tasting party beginning at 5 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 24, presented by Two Roads Brewing Company, Dichello Distributors, Stony Creek Brewery, Blackhog and Brewport. A special $30 ticket package will include game entry, access to the beer tasting event and a Sound Tigers tasting glass prior to the team's 7 p.m. matchup against the Hartford Wolf Pack. This package must be purchased in advance. For more info and to order this special package, call 203-345-2300 Option 7 or click here to ORDER HOCKEY AND HOPS PACKAGE.
Hottest Tickets in Town: The Sound Tigers will boast one of their most extensive and exciting promotional lineups in team history this season. This year's calendar will feature the return of Star Wars Night (Dec. 2), a meet-and-greet with Marvel superheroes (Jan. 27), and all-new promotions like a camouflage baseball cap (Jan. 13) and a kid's lunch box giveaway (Feb. 11).
Guarantee Your Seats: Season tickets and flex plans are on sale now for the 2017-18 campaign, offering the greatest savings and ultimate flexibility of all ticket packages. Pick between a full-season, 20-game, 15-game or 10-game plan and you'll also be entitled to exclusive benefits, including the ticket holder exchange policy, which means any unused tickets can be traded for future games. Seating options are broken down into six different pricing sections, giving you the flexibility to fit Sound Tigers' hockey into any kind of budget. Please contact Brad Dworin at 203-345-4813 or via email@example.com with questions or to guarantee your seats.
About the Bridgeport Sound Tigers
Founded in 2001, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers Hockey Club is the top minor league affiliate of the New York Islanders. Don't miss your chance to take part in the family fun that occurs during home games at Webster Bank Arena. For further information on ticket or sponsorship opportunities, call our office at (203) 345-2300 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. For more team information, log on to soundtigers.com.