BRUINS 3, SOUND TIGERS 2 (OT)
Austin Czarnik finished off his hat trick in overtime as the Bridgeport Sound Tigers fell to the Providence Bruins 3-2 on Friday night at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center.
Czarnik’s third of the game was his first of the game at even strength, scoring just 51 seconds into the overtime frame during 4-on-4.
Despite a scoreless first period, Bridgeport had the better of the chances in the opening frame. The Sound Tigers outshot the Bruins 17-7 in the first, led by Justin Vaive who had four, but Malcolm Subban stopped everything that came his way, including several odd-man rushes.
Providence got the scoring started early in the second period on the man advantage. With Kevin Czuczman in the box for high-sticking, Czarnik ripped a one-timer past Christopher Gibson to make it a 1-0 game. Seth Griffith and Brandon DeFazio picked up assists on the goal.
The Bruins increased their lead midway through the second on another power play. With Jesse Graham in the box for tripping, Czarnik scored his second of the game, this time beating Gibson over the glove to make it 2-0. It marked the seventh power play goal for the Bruins in just four games against the Sound Tigers this season.
The Bruins had a pair of chances later in the frame to get their third of the game, but could not find the back of the net. First it was Anton Blidh, chipping a shot left of a wide-open net. Then with seconds remaining, Colton Hargrove had an empty net backdoor, but skied the backhander over the cage.
It looked as if Bridgeport would go into the second intermission down by a pair, but it got a goal in the dying minutes of the middle period. It was James Wright, sending a wrist shot on net that eluded everyone and beat Subban over the blocker. Wright’s fourth of the season helped cut the deficit to 2-1.
Bridgeport tied the game up early in the third period, with Taylor Beck putting home his seventh goal of the season off the feed from Wright to tie the game at 2-2. The goal came just 42 seconds into the third and for Beck, it was his fourth goal in as many games.
Neither team could find the back of the net in regulation, so the game had to be solved in overtime. It was then that Gibson made an incredible stop on DeFazio, but Czarnik was there to bang in the rebound and help the Bruins to the victory.
Providence went 2-for-7 on the man advantage while the Sound Tigers failed on both of their power plays. Gibson made 35 saves in a losing effort while Subban stopped 28 for the win.
The Sound Tigers return home tomorrow when they face the Portland Pirates for the first of two this weekend. Puck drop is set for 7:00 p.m.
Whitney – Kearns – Halmo
Vaive – Wright – Beck
Florek – Holmstrom – Petrov
Gomes – Root – Collberg
Pelech – Mayfield
Czuczman – Pulock
Graham – Carkner