BRIDGEPORT, CT - Five different skaters recorded multiple points on Saturday as the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (38-22-2-1), proud AHL affiliate of the New York Islanders, earned a 4-1 win over the Utica Comets (29-25-7-2) at Webster Bank Arena.
Tanner Fritz, Andrew Rowe and Carter Verhaeghe each scored once and added an assist, while Josh Winquist and Bracken Kearns registered two assists. Fritz was credited with the game-winning tally midway through the first period and Eamon McAdam (10-3-0) made 23 saves between the pipes en route to his 10th win of the season.
With the victory, the Sound Tigers have won eight of their last 10 games at home.
Bridgeport built an early 2-0 lead with a pair of tallies in the first period, including Rowe’s 10th goal of the season at the 10:17 mark. Kearns created the chance when he gathered the puck in the trapezoid and slid a pass to Verhaeghe on the left wing. Verhaeghe settled it and immediately forced a pass to the crease where Rowe beat goaltender Thatcher Demko’s left leg.
Just over two minutes later, Fritz doubled the Sound Tigers’ advantage with his 19th of the season. Winquist won a faceoff in the right circle of the Comets’ zone and quickly brushed a pass to Fritz in the slot, where he beat Demko’s glove with a wrister.
Following a scoreless second period, Verhaeghe made it 3-0 at 4:27 of the third when he brought the puck to the front of the cage on the forehand. It was knocked off his stick to Kearns at the doorstep and immediately pushed back to Verhaeghe, allowing the latter to fire a shot over Demko’s glove for his 13th goal of the season.
In a desperate move to generate some offense, the Comets pulled Demko with more than six minutes remaining, and also got a power play when Kearns was called for hooking at 14:19. That set up a 6-on-4 attack in which Evan McEneny capitalized to make it 3-1. From the top of the right circle, McEneny hammered a slap shot through traffic and past McAdam’s glove at the 15:38 mark.
However, Dal Colle halted any comeback at 16:40 when he sealed the victory with his 14th goal of the season. With Demko back on the bench, Fritz and Winquist forced a turnover in the neutral zone and advanced the puck for Dal Colle, who skated into the Comets’ end, past a diving Chad Billins, and scored on the empty net.
The game included one fight when former teammates, Ben Holmstrom and Utica’s Andrey Pedan, dropped the gloves at 8:22 of the second period. It was Pedan’s second major penalty of the night following a five-minute boarding call at 1:53 of the second (for a violent hit against Ryan Pulock).
The Sound Tigers finished the game 0-for-2 on the power play and 1-for-2 on the penalty kill. Demko (17-12-4) made 24 saves, but saw his eight-game win streak come to an end.
Bridgeport outshot Utica 28-24.
Casey Cizikas Bobblehead Night: New York Islanders forward and former Sound Tiger Casey Cizikas will be in attendance at tomorrow's 3 p.m. game against the Hershey Bears. The first 2,000 fans will receive his bobblehead at the door courtesy of IBEW and Casey will meet fans and sign autographs before the game through the first intermission. In addition, receive $2 off your game ticket at the Webster Bank Arena box office when you show your AAA Membership Card. Doors open at 2 p.m. and good seats are still available by clicking here.
For additional details or to reserve seats for any of the 2016-17 giveaway and theme nights, please call the Sound Tigers’ front office at (203) 345-2300.
Executive suites and premium seat packages are also available by calling the team’s front office at (203) 345-4841. If you are interested in group outings with your friends, family, co-workers, or clients an unforgettable experience at a discounted rate, call the group sales hotline at (203) 345-2300 Ext. 7.