Providence, RI - Jason Missiaen made 37 saves Sunday at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center Providence, to backstop the Connecticut Whale to a 4-2 win over the Atlantic Division-leading Providence Bruins.
The Whale were outshot 39-25 in the game, but got third-period goals from Andrew Yogan, Nick Palmieri and Brandon Mashinter to erase a 2-1 deficit. Mike Vernace also scored for the Whale, and Yogan and Mashinter both added assists. Blake Parlett and Brandon Segal had two assists apiece. The win stopped a three-game Connecticut losing streak (0-2-0-1).
Alden Hirschfeld and Maxime Sauve scored for the Bruins, and Michael Hutchinson made 22 saves.
“I think we got off to a good start, and then we sort of let them come in a bit,” Missiaen said. “The boys came around in the third period, and we ended up hanging in there and started taking it to them a little bit more, and we managed to get the two points.”
The Whale outshot the Bruins 9-1 in the first eight-and-a-half minutes of the game, but Providence controlled play thereafter, and ended up with a 17-10 shots advantage for the period. Both Missiaen and Hutchinson were solid, though, and the period ended scoreless.
Providence had an even more lopsided shots advantage in the second, 15-5, but the two teams came out of it tied 1-1.
The Bruins’ Hirschfeld broke the scoreless tie at 5:49 of the second. He was set up all alone in front of Missiaen by Chris Bourque with a quick centering pass, after Ryan Spooner started a rush into the Whale zone.
Missiaen faced some furious Providence pressure thereafter, but did not yield anything further, and the Whale tied the game in a four-on-four situation with 2:18 left in the period.
Vernace had a pass broken up on two-on-one break, but stayed low in the offensive zone. A shot by Mashinter was blocked, but the puck caromed right to Vernace, who flicked it into the net from Hutchinson’s right.
The Bruins grabbed the lead back on a power play at 4:31 of the third period, when Sauve scored his eighth of the year with Segal in the penalty box for tripping.
Christian Hanson fed the puck across the goalmouth to Sauve at the right side of the crease, and Sauve was able to slip it past Missiaen.
The Whale responded only 32 seconds later, though, when Yogan took a pass from Segal, circled behind the net and beat Hutchinson with a wraparound, putting the puck past the netminder’s left skate at 5:03.
The game-winner came 2:40 later, at 7:43, when Palmieri scored his second goal in 15 games with the Whale. Palmieri worked the puck from below the goal line to the right-wing circle, and then went to the front of the net to deflect Benn Ferriero’s shot past Hutchinson.
Hutchinson kept it a one-goal game by stopping Kris Newbury on a penalty shot with 8:50 remaining. Newbury was awarded the penalty-shot opportunity when he was hooked off the puck on a shorthanded breakaway, but his move to the backhand was successfully countered by Hutchinson.
The Whale iced the win at 19:15, however, when Mashinter scored an empty-net goal, on a shot from the left-wing boards.
The Whale is now off until Saturday night, when they will start a six-game homestand with a 7:00 PM game against the Manchester Monarchs at the XL Center. For all Whale home games, tickets start as low as $10 each ($12 each when tickets are purchased on the day of the game), at the Public Power Ticket Office at the XL Center, through TicketMaster Charge-by-Phone at 1-800-745-3000 and on-line at www.ticketmaster.com.
Connecticut Whale 4 at Providence Bruins 2
Sunday, March 10, 2013 - Dunkin' Donuts Center
Connecticut 0 1 3 - 4
Providence 0 1 1 - 2
1st Period- No Scoring. Penalties-Tardif Pro (roughing), 14:04; Kreider Ct (high-sticking), 15:28.