BRIDGEPORT, CT - The Bridgeport Sound Tigers (19-15-4-2), proud AHL affiliate of the New York Islanders, received goals from Casey Bailey, Josh Ho-Sang and Kyle Schempp on Saturday and held on to a narrow lead down the stretch, earning a 3-2 win against the Providence Bruins (23-13-3-1) at Webster Bank Arena.
With the victory, the Sound Tigers extended their unbeaten in regulation streak at home to seven games (5-0-1-1) and improved to 5-1-0-0 against Providence this season. It was the fifth time in Bridgeport’s last six games that an outcome has been decided by just one tally.
Between the pipes, Christopher Gibson (15-8-2) made 25 saves on 27 shots and improved to 4-0-0-0 against the Bruins this season. He is also 7-2-2 over his last 11 starts and now tied for fifth in the AHL with 15 wins.
Ho-Sang put the Sound Tigers on the board first just 5:11 into the opening frame when he netted his fifth goal of the season. After he swiped the puck away from Jakob Zboril at the Sound Tigers’ blue line, Ho-Sang quickly turned on the jets and skated the other way to set up a partial breakaway. He made a quick move at the doorstep and slipped the puck around the outstretched reach of Jordan Binnington to make it 1-0.
Bridgeport doubled its lead less than four minutes into the second period when Kyle Burroughs guided a wrist shot that bounced off a defenseman in front and fell right to Schempp’s stick. The rookie forward flipped a quick shot past Binnington from the top of the crease that trickled in just over the goal line. It was Schempp’s second goal of the season.
Providence responded at 11:52 of the middle frame when Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson put the Bruins on the board with a power-play tally. With St. Denis in the box serving a slashing penalty, Forsbacka Karlsson blasted a wrist shot from between the circles that went top shelf on Gibson to make it 2-1.
The Sound Tigers quickly took advantage of a tripping penalty to Anders Bjork less than three minutes later to regain their two-goal lead. Parker Wotherspoon forced a pass to the top of the slot where Ho-Sang flubbed a slap shot, but the puck floated into traffic and Bailey deflected the hovering puck into the twine for his 10th goal of the season, and his fifth on the power play. Ho-Sang also capped a multi-point effort with an assist.
A resilient Providence club battled back and came within a goal at 8:01 of the final period when Colby Cave scored on a one-time shot. Former Sound Tigers forward Justin Hickman skated towards the back of Gibson’s net and sent a centering pass to Cave, who banged it home for his fourth goal of the year.
The Bruins pulled Binnington for the extra attacker in the final minute of play, but could not even the contest.
The Sound Tigers outshot the Bruins 30-27 and finished the game 1-for-3 on the power play, while also going 5-for-6 on the penalty kill. Binnington (10-4-1) made 27 saves in his third straight loss for Providence.
Next Time Out: The Sound Tigers welcome a rare opponent to Webster Bank Arena tomorrow evening with a 5 p.m. matchup against the Toronto Marlies. It’s the second and final meeting between the two teams this season. Fans can follow all of the live action on the Sound Tigers Radio Network and AHL Live, beginning with the pre-game show at 4:45 p.m.
Guarantee Your Seats: Flex plans are on sale now for the 2017-18 campaign, offering the greatest savings and ultimate flexibility of all ticket packages. Pick between a full-season, 20-game, 15-game or 10-game plan and you'll also be entitled to exclusive benefits, including the ticket holder exchange policy, which means any unused tickets can be traded for future games. Please contact Brad Dworin at 203-345-4813 or via firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or to guarantee your seats.
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