The Bridgeport Sound Tigers go for their second straight win this afternoon as they complete a three-game homestand against the Providence Bruins at 1 p.m. Last time out, Samuel Bolduc collected a career-high three points (1g, 2a) and the Sound Tigers scored three times in the third period to defeat the Hartford Wolf Pack 5-3 at Webster Bank Arena on Wednesday. Cole Bardreau and Dmytro Timashov added a goal and one assist each, while Jakub Skarek (1-3-0) made a season-high 29 saves in the win. Tanner Fritz and Jeff Kubiak also had two assists. Bridgeport has not won back-to-back games at home since Feb. 8 - Feb. 15, 2020.
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TIGERS VS. BRUINS
Today's game marks the third of 12 meetings between the Sound Tigers and Bruins this season, and the second of six inside Webster Bank Arena. In their last matchup on Saturday, Providence used a three-goal third period to come from behind and defeat Bridgeport, 5-3. Bobo Carpenter, Cole Bardreau and Kyle MacLean (first pro goal) each found the back of the net for the Sound Tigers, but the Bruins scored three times on the power play and Jakub Lauko had a game-high three points (1g, 2a). Bridgeport went 4-5-0-0 against Providence in 2019-20.
VIEW FROM PROVIDENCE
Led by head coach Jay Leach, the Bruins had more points than anyone in the Eastern Conference (82) when the 2019-20 season came to a halt. In fact, Providence was on a 12-game winning streak and a 13-game point streak, and finished the season at 38-18-3-3. They hadn't lost in regulation since Feb. 8, 2020 (to Bridgeport) until the Bruins suffered a 4-0 setback to Hartford last Thursday, Feb. 11th. Providence couldn't beat goalie Keith Kinkaid despite 25 shots on net, while Dan Vladar made 20 saves on 22 shots in his season debut. Jakub Lauko leads the club in scoring with five points (1g, 4a) in three games – all against Bridgeport.
LEADING THE WAY
Rookie defenseman Samuel Bolduc has five points (2g, 3a) in his last three games and enters today's tilt on a team-high, three-game point streak. Bolduc earned a career-high three points (1g, 2a) on Wednesday and scored his second goal in as many games against Hartford with a perfectly placed wrist shot at 6:23 of the third period. A native of Laval, Que., Bolduc was selected in the second round, 57th overall, of the 2019 NHL Draft. He played each of the last three-plus years in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL), recording 94 points (22 goals, 72 assists) in 189 games with Blainville-Boisbriand and Sherbrooke.
BARDREAU BURIES ANOTHER ONE
Cole Bardreau became the first Sound Tigers player to score in back-to-back games this season when he netted the eventual game-winner on Wednesday against Hartford. Bardreau crashed the net at 13:39 of the third period and deflected Samuel Bolduc's centering feed past goaltender Tyler Wall. Bardreau is one of three players with two goals so far this season (joining Bolduc and Bobo Carpenter) and he has already matched his total from 2019-20, when he scored twice in 38 games with the Sound Tigers.
CLIMBING THE LADDER
Tanner Fritz collected his first two points of the season on Wednesday with a pair of assists in the 5-3 win. The sixth-year forward now has 88 total assists and 131 total points in his Sound Tigers/AHL career - both of which rank inside the top 10 in team history. Fritz is tied with Mark Wotton (2006-11) for fifth place on the team's all-time assists list [one behind Steve Regier (2004-08)] and sits ninth on the all-time points list, five behind Trent Hunter (2001-03).
Seth Helgeson's goal on Wednesday was just his second since October, 2018 (both have come in his last seven games)... Dmytro Timashov had one goal and one assist on Wednesday, his first two points with the Sound Tigers... Wednesday's game was the first time Bridgeport did not allow a power-play goal this season... Providence has the second-best power play in the AHL so far this season (5-for-13, 38.5%)... If Jakub Skarek starts today, it would be the first time in franchise history that the same goaltender has started five straight games to begin a season... The last time someone even started two games in a row to open a season was Anders Nilsson in 2013-14 (three straight for Nilsson that year).