The Bridgeport Sound Tigers (3-9-1-0), American Hockey League affiliate of the New York Islanders, scored twice on the power play Friday afternoon, but suffered a 5-2 loss to the Hartford Wolf Pack (6-6-1-0) at Webster Bank Arena.
In fact, six of the seven combined goals came on the man advantage including Samuel Bolduc’s fourth goal of the season and Cole Bardreau’s team-leading sixth. Otto Koivula assisted on both of Bridgeport’s tallies, while Ty Ronning had three points (two goals, one assist) to pace the Wolf Pack.
With the setback, Bridgeport fell to 2-3-0-0 against Hartford this season. Today’s contest was the first time the home team came up short.
The Wolf Pack went 4-for-5 on the power play, which accounted for each of the team’s first three goals. Tim Gettinger put Hartford ahead 1-0 at 9:17 of the first period when he settled the puck near the extended goal line and banked a shot off of a Sound Tigers defenseman in front, past Cory Schneider. Ronning’s first of two goals on the afternoon made it 2-0 just over eight minutes later when he set up on the right side and beat Schneider through Paul Thompson’s screen.
Bridgeport’s power play drew the score back even in the opening seven minutes of the second period, beginning with Bolduc’s slap shot from above the right circle. After Gettinger was called for cross-checking 63 seconds into the period, Koivula and Mitch Vande Sompel teamed up on the parameter and Bolduc smashed a one-time shot past goaltender Adam Huska at 2:32. All four of Bolduc’s goals this season have come against the Wolf Pack, with three of the four coming at home.
Bardreau followed up on the very next penalty, a slashing minor against Hartford’s Morgan Barron, to tie the game at 2-2. Koivula corralled a loose puck behind the Wolf Pack net and quickly centered it for Bardreau, who went low, blocker side on Huska from the right circle. It was Bardreau’s fourth goal in the last five games (at the 6:44 mark).
Hartford regained its lead exactly one minute later and finished the contest with three unanswered tallies to secure its third straight win. Austin Rueschhoff’s third goal of the season proved to be the difference maker as he cleaned up a rebound from Raddysh’s wrist shot at the blue line to make it 3-2.
Ronning made it 4-2 at 14:36 of the second period when he drove to the right circle, rolled to his right skate, and blew a wrist shot past Schneider’s glove. Barron’s team-leading eighth goal of the season and his fifth on the power play came less than three minutes later to cap the scoring. Patrick Newell moved into the left circle and bounced a shot off of Bolduc that deflected to Barron in front at 16:58.
Bridgeport outshot Hartford 10-7 in the third period but couldn’t chip away.
Schneider (0-1-1) made 22 saves on 27 shots in the second game on his conditioning assignment by the Islanders.
Next Time Out: The Sound Tigers return to action on Monday with a 1 p.m. puck drop against the Providence Bruins at the New England Sports Center in Marlborough, Mass. Fans can follow all of the live action via AHLTV or the Sound Tigers Radio Network, beginning with the pre-game show at 12:45 p.m.