WILKES-BARRE, PA - The Bridgeport Sound Tigers (8-12-3-1), American Hockey League affiliate of the New York Islanders, saw their fourth-game winning streak come to an end on Saturday in a 5-2 loss to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (13-6-2-1) at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza.
Matt Lorito scored for the second straight game and Parker Wotherspoon posted his first goal of the season, while Jakub Skarek (2-3-0) made 29 saves on 34 shots. Five Penguins had a multi-point performance including Adam Johnson (1g, 1a), who recorded the eventual game-winner at 11:54 of the second period. Penguins goaltender Casey DeSmith (10-4-0) had 26 saves in his sixth consecutive victory.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton struck first on its initial power play at 6:13 of the opening frame to take a 1-0 lead. With Mason Jobst in the box for holding, Oula Palve guided a long one-time slap shot from the blue line that was deflected by Stefan Noesen and Sam Miletic, resulting in Miletic’s third goal of the season on the rebound. However, the Sound Tigers answered just over five minutes later when Wotherspoon fired home the equalizer. Lorito made a nifty pass from behind the goal line, filtering the puck to the right wing where Wotherspoon buried a quick shot on the forehand. Andrew Ladd also gathered an assist.
Matt Abt regained the Penguins’ lead at 6:07 of the second period with his first goal of the year. Abt lifted a long shot from the left point that funneled through a crowd and over Skarek’s glove for the first of back-to-back goals that put the home team ahead 3-1. Johnson followed up at the 11:54 mark by beating Skarek from distance, assisted by Chase Berger and Anthony Angello.
Less than two minutes later, Bridgeport got its deficit back down to one with Lorito’s team-leading sixth goal of the year. Colin McDonald pushed a pass up the wall to left point where Seth Helgeson stepped into a heavy slap shot that Casey DeSmith kicked back, but Lorito finished the second chance from the doorstep. It was also his 12th point in 23 games, tied with Sebastian Aho for the team lead.
The Penguins ended the night with two third-period goals to earn the 5-2 win. Angello’s fifth of the season made it 4-2 at the 5:13 mark before Palve netted his first of the year shortly after. Palve’s body deflected a point shot from Thomas Di Pauli on a delayed penalty at 6:24.
The Sound Tigers finished the game 0-for-3 on the power play and 4-for-5 on the penalty kill.
The contest also included one fight when Wotherspoon and Chase Berger went toe-to-toe in the final five minutes of regulation.