Bruins Lose Crucial Game to Charlotte, but Win last 2 of 3 to Close Regular Season (Recap 4/13-15/18)
Tl;Dr Recap for those who just want the stats:
4/13/18 Providence (43-25-5) vs. Charlotte (44-26-4) 7:05 PM
Goalies: Jordan Binnington, 23 of 28 shots, 0.821 SV%; Jeremy Smith, 29 of 32 shots, 0.906 SV%
Box Score W/Scoring Summary:
PVD 5-3 regulation loss, drops to (43-26-5), CHA improves to (45-26-4)
4/14/18 Providence (43-26-5) @ Springfield (32-35-7) 7:05 PM
Goalies: Zane McIntyre, 24 of 24 shots, Shutout; Sam Montembeault, 8 of 12 shots, 0.667 SV% Replaced by Harri Saterri, 16 of 17 shots, 0.941 SV%.
Box Score W/ Scoring Summary:
PVD 5-0 Regulation W, improves to (44-26-5), SPR drops to (32-36-7)
4/15/18 Providence (44-26-5) vs. Springfield (32-36-7) 3:05 PM
Goalies: Zane McIntyre, 27 of 29 shots, 0.931 SV%; Harri Sateri, 31 of 34 shots, 0.911 SV%
Box Score W/ Scoring Summary:
PVD 4-2 Regulation W, improves to (45-26-5), SPR drops to (32-37-7)
Providence Bruins vs. Charlotte Checkers (4/13/18)
Up from the Carolinas, the Charlotte Checkers stopped by the Dunkin Donuts Center for the last regular season matchup between the two clubs for the 2017-2018 season. Providence took an early lead off the stick of Austin Czarnik fed by Tommy Cross and Kenny Agostino during a powerplay, but Charlotte stormed back with two back-to-back goals. Charlotte’s Hayden Fleury beat Providence’ Jordan Binnington back door, off a feed from Andrew Miller and Lucas Wallmark; This was followed up a minute later by Nicolas Roy who tipped a shot-pass from teammate Josiah Didier into the Providence net, and the period ended 2-1 Charlotte. Providence answered back in the second, as Ryan Fitzgerald caught linemate Jordan Szwarz’s spinround pass and tucked it past former Providence Bruin Jeremy Smith to tie the game. Both teams battled hard in the second but neither scored till the dying seconds of the period, as Valentin Zykovnotched a powerplay goal with Trent Frederic in the box. Approaching the midway point of the third period, Zach Senyshyn used his speed to blaze up the ice, and score the tying goal off his own rebound. Charlotte responded with another powerplay goal as Jakub Zboril sat in the Providence box for slashing, and another in the final minute of regulation to seal the win and overtake Providence in the AHL standings.
Providence Bruins @ Springfield Thunderbirds I (4/14/18)
Providence played spoiler to the Thunderbirds final home game of the AHL season, putting a clinic on a Springfield team well clear of a playoff berth. Special teams proved to be a bright spot for the Bruins, as early in the first period, Jack Studnika tipped a shot-pass from teammate Kenny Agostino on the powerplay. Later, with newcomer Karson Kuhlman in the box serving 2 minutes in the Providence penalty box for slashing, the Bruins PK unit forced a turnover near the point, leading to a 2-on-1. Adam Payerl slid a pass around the Springfield defender to Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson who tipped it past Sam Montembeault for the 2nd Providence goal. Providence’s powerplay struck again in the 2nd period, as Adam Payerl found the back of the net off feeds from Jakub Zboril and Zach Senyshyn. 4 minutes later, JFK tallied his second of the night and chased Thunderbirds goaltender Sam Montembeault who allowed 4 goals on 12 shots. Even the Thunderbirds replacement Harri Sateri couldn’t stem the bleeding entirely: Kenny Agostino redirected a JFK shot-pass in the third period to wrap up the scoring for both teams and Zane McIntyre posted his AHL-best 7th shutout of this season, passing Toronto’s Garret Sparks. Providence skated closer back to the 3rd place spot with this win.
Providence Bruins vs. Springfield Thunderbirds II (4/15/18)
As the Providence Bruins began the season, so did they end it, with a matchup against the Springfield Thunderbirds on home ice. The night prior, Providence chased the Thunderbirds starting goaltender en route to a 5-0 thumping of Springfield. In the Saturday night matchup against Springfield, Providence wisely rested their top line of Fitzgerald-Szwarz-Czarnik, icing a fresh top line. However, it would be Zach Senyshyn, promoted to the second line that would open the scoring. After several scoring chances for Providence were stuffed by the Thunderbirds Harri Sateri, Senyshyn charged into the attacking zone behind Colton Hargrove who carried the puck in. Senyshyn took a short drop-pass, fought off a check, and flicked a nifty backhander from the slot that slid by Sateri glove side. Before this, Providence successfully killed two penalties, and the period ended with the Bruins up by one. Springfield began the 2nd period scoring quickly, but Ryan Fitzgerald made a brilliant play by the blue line to filch the puck and race up the ice for his 21st goal of the season. Dryden Hunt’s second of the game followed a little over ten minutes later, and Springfield pulled even with Providence once more. In the third period, Zane McIntyre got his second assist of the season, while newcomer Karson Kuhlman notched his first professional point as they fed Trent Frederic for the latter’s 5th goal of the season. The game opened up at this point, with Providence and Springfield trading scoring chances, but the Bruins held their lead. With a minute and change remaining in their season, Springfield pulled the goalie to try for an equalizer. Austin Czarnik, in a continuation on a theme, pressured the Thunderbirds at the blue line. Czarnik successfully stripped the puck and skated up ice toward the empty net until he was hauled down from behind by a Springfield skater; in the AHL rule book, when that happens, the skater with the puck is automatically awarded a goal. The Bruins topped the Thunderbirds 4-2, but with a Charlotte win the same day, remained in 4th place.
Plus / Minus
Plus: + Zach Senyshyn has been coming into his own, scoring 3 goals and 1 assist in his last 4 games. Senyshyn uses his speed, size, and skill to outplay, outmaneuver, and wear down opponents, and his patience to draw penalties (for example 2 in the Friday night game against Charlotte).
+ JFK scored two goals and an assist against the Thunderbirds Saturday night, including a heartbreaking shorthanded goal. He and Kenny Agostino returned from injury along with Justin Hickman. Kenny Agostino had a strong game Saturday night with 1G-2A.
+ Jack Studnika has his first professional goal, with a high tip-in PP goal on Sam Montembeault Saturday night in Springfield. He has 5 points in 4 games during his ATO.
+ Providence scored at least once each game on the man-advantage; also scored a shorthanded goal while killing a penalty Saturday night. The Bruins also killed all penalties against Springfield both Saturday and Sunday.
+ Despite losing to Charlotte Friday, Providence won the next two games to put them in a position to reclaim third in the Atlantic. Gritty, high-energy effort to make up for their mistake.
+ Austin Czarnik ends the season 3rd in the entire AHL among scoring leaders.
+ Boston Bruins newest addition Karson Kuhlman has his first pro point, with an assist on Sunday afternoon.
Minus: – Providence gave up 2 goals on the penalty kill to Charlotte Friday night.
– Another shaky outing for Jakub Zboril who was penalized twice in quick succession Friday night, one of which resulted in the game winning goal for Charlotte.
– Losing to Charlotte Friday night took The PBruins’s playoff position out of their direct control, requiring 2 more Providence wins, and a Charlotte loss to Bridgeport.