Samuel Bolduc collected a career-high three points (one goal, one assist) and Jakub Skarek made 29 saves on Wednesday as the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (1-3-0-0), American Hockey League affiliate of the New York Islanders, earned a 5-3 victory against the Hartford Wolf Pack (2-1-0-0) at Webster Bank Arena.
The Sound Tigers had three goals in the third period and Dmytro Timashov and Cole Bardreau each scored once and added an assist in the team’s first win of 2020-21. Tanner Fritz and Jeff Kubiak added two assists each.
Despite getting outshot 12-2 in the opening frame, the Sound Tigers only trailed by one entering the first intermission when Austin Rueschhoff scored his first pro goal in the final 40 seconds. Tarmo Reunanen set him up to extend his point streak to three games (two goals, two assists) and the rookie forward beat Skarek’s glove at even strength.
Seth Helgeson tied the game at 5:44 of the second period with his first goal of the season and just his second since October, 2018. The Bridgeport captain settled Bardreau’s pass over the blue line and skated to the high slot where he beat Tyler Wall (in his pro debut) with a wrist shot that went off the post and in.
However, the lead was short lived as Jonny Brodzinski made it 2-1 less than five minutes later with his second goal of the season. Mason Geertsen couldn’t get a shot through from the right point, but Morgan Barron swept the rebound to Brodzinski at the left post. Both of his goals this season have come against Bridgeport – this one at the 10:12 mark.
Simon Holmstrom evened the score for a second time with a long wrist shot through traffic just 83 seconds later. Holmstrom gathered a pass from Fritz on the right wing and beat Wall’s glove for his first goal of the season at 11:35 of the second. Parker Wotherspoon also notched his first point of the year with an assist.
Hartford grabbed its third different lead of the afternoon 1:14 into the third period when Patrick Newell scored his second goal in as many games against the Sound Tigers. After earning the game-winning tally against Bridgeport on Feb. 7, Newell capitalized on a wacky bounce behind the Sound Tigers’ net and finished a feed from Brodzinski at the doorstep.
The pendulum continued to swing at 6:23 of the third period when Bolduc scored his second pro goal and the first of three straight for Bridgeport to end the game. Timashov slid a pass to Bolduc along the right-wing wall and the rookie defenseman didn’t miss from there. Fritz collected the secondary assist and now has 88 helpers (T-5th all-time) and 131 points (9th all-time) in his Sound Tigers career.
Bardreau put Bridgeport ahead for the first time all day and pocketed the eventual game-winner at the 13:39 mark, redirecting Bolduc’s centering feed from the left wing to make it 4-3. Timashov solidified the win with an empty-netter in the final 23 seconds - his first goal of the season and his first with the Sound Tigers.
Bridgeport finished the afternoon 0-for-5 on the power play, but 3-for-3 on the penalty kill. Skarek (1-3-0) earned his first win since Dec. 21, 2019 and Wall (0-1-0) made 13 saves in his pro debut.
Next Time Out: The Sound Tigers return to action on Friday with a 1 p.m. matchup against the Providence Bruins at Webster Bank Arena. 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.