BRIDGEPORT, CT - Greg Mauldin and Mark Katic scored goals and Nathan Lawson made 25 saves to lead the Bridgeport Sound Tigers to a 2-0 win over the Portland Pirates Tuesday night at the Arena at Harbor Yard. The Sound Tigers have now won three of their last four games to improve their record to 16-13-1-2.
Portland outshot Bridgeport 26-16. The shutout was Lawson's first of the year and the second of the season for Bridgeport. The Sound Tigers penalty kill was superb, killing off all six opportunities they had, including a four minute Pirates power-play in the first period.
"Your goaltender is always your best penalty killer and Nathan kept us in the game tonight," Sound Tigers Head Coach Jack Capuano said. "We didn't have great skating legs but we played hard and earned the victory."
After a scoreless first period, Katic opened the scoring 2:55 into the second period. Katic skated the puck the length of the ice, fought off a defender and fired a backhand shot high into the net, past goaltender Jhonas Enroth, for his second goal of the season.
The Pirates held a 10-5 advantage in shots in the second period. Lawson made several strong saves, including a pad stop on a shorthanded breakaway by Mark Mancari midway through the frame. Late in the period, Lawson stopped Derek Whitmore's shot from directly in front of the net.
"There are always three or four important saves that you have to make to win," Lawson said. "Teams are so evenly matched that the game usually comes down to those few plays and tonight we made them."
Mauldin made it 2-0 with a shorthanded tally at the 11:36 mark of the third period. Mauldin picked up the puck in the neutral zone and raced towards the net. After going around a defender, Mauldin snapped a shot inside the right post for his team leading 11th goal of the year.
The Sound Tigers are back in action Friday night when they open a two game road trip in Providence at 7:00 pm. The Sound Tigers will be on home ice again Sunday as they host the Springfield Falcons at 4:00 pm. The game will feature the Sound Tigers annual Teddy Bear Toss. All fans are asked to bring a stuffed animal to the game to donate to local children's hospitals. For tickets, please call TicketMaster at 1-800-745-3000.
SEE YOU SOON: The Sound Tigers and Pirates will meet again in just four days, as the Sound Tigers visit the Cumberland County Civic Center Saturday night.
HANUKKAH NIGHT: The Sound Tigers celebrated Hanukkah during the game. There was a menorah lighting during the first intermission and a latke eating contest during the third period. There were also singing performances by local Jewish organizations and a Kosher concession stand in the concourse.
1. Nathan Lawson, Bridgeport -- Made 25 saves to earn his first shutout of the season
2. Mark Katic, Bridgeport -- Scored the game-winning goal
3. Greg Mauldin, Bridgeport -- Scored his team leading 11th goal of the season
F: Smith-Moore (A)-Reich
F: Larsen (C)-Ennis-McCormick
R: J. Hebert. L: Fyrer, Colby.