P-BRUINS LOOK FOR WEEKEND SWEEP OF SHARKS
Providence Hosts Worcester on Super Bowl Sunday
Providence, RI - The Providence Bruins (24-24-3-0, 51 PTS, 7th Atlantic) host the Worcester Sharks (31-15-2-2, 66 PTS, 1st Atlantic) this afternoon at the Dunkin' Donuts Center for the teams' seventh of 10 regular season meetings in 2009-10. On the year, the P-Bruins are 2-3-1-0 against the Sharks, including 0-2-1-0 in Rhode Island.
The P-Bruins took a bite out of the Sharks last night at the DCU Center as Providence edged Worcester 5-3. The loss was Worcester's first in regulation since January 15, snapping a 7-0-1-0 streak. The P-Bruins provided a consistent attack and saw great success from their top line as captain Trent Whitfield burried two goals and Brad Marchand added two assists. Mikko Lehtonen, Craig Weller and Jamie Arniel each saw time with Whitfield and Marchand as well as the three combined for three goals and two assists. Providence's power play success continued, going 2-for-9, and Dany Sabourin was sharp in net, making 29 saves for his 20th win of the season. The Sharks saw rare struggles out of rookie goalie Alex Stalock, who made 22 stops and lost for just the 13th time this year. There were some late fireworks in the game with Marchand and Worcester's Andrew Desjardins each picking up 10-minute misconducts. The teams combined for 78 penalty minutes with 50 minutes assessed to the Sharks.
Providence continues to be led by PlanetUSA All-Star Mikko Lehtonen's 16 goals and 39 points. He and fellow PlanetUSA All-Star Andy Wozniewski share the team-lead with 23 assists. Between the pipes, Sabourin is 20-17-0 with three shutouts, a 2.42 goals-against-average and a .919 save percentage. Worcester, meanwhile, is paced by Steven Zalewski's 50 points. He and Canadian All-Star rookie Logan Couture each have 18 goals to lead the Sharks. Another Canadian All-Star, defenseman Danny Groulx, is first with 33 assists. He's been red-hot of late with points in nine straight games, totaling four goals and 12 helpers over that span. In net, Stalock is 27-12-1 with one blanking and a 2.63 GAA. His 27 wins lead the AHL.
In the season-series, Zalewski leads all players with seven points, including four goals. Lehtonen is first for the P-Bruins with six points. Providence's Jordan Knackstedt is first in the season-set with four assists. In the crease, Sabourin is 2-3-0 with a 3.02 GAA against the Sharks. Stalock is 4-2-0 with a 2.66 GAA.
On special teams, Providence is 17th (17.4%) in the league on the power play and 19th (81.6%) on the penalty kill, while Worcester sits ninth (19.0%) with the man-advantage and 26th (79.0%) when short-handed.
Providence returns to action with three games next weekend, beginning Friday at The Dunk against the Hartford Wolf Pack at 7:05 p.m. for Ice Scraper Night. The scrapers are free to the first 2,000 fans. On Saturday, the P-Bruins travel to face the Springfield Falcons at 7 p.m. Next Sunday, Valentine's Day, Providence hosts the Syracuse Crunch for Kids Hat Night at 4:05 p.m. Hats are free to the first 1,000 kids age 12 and under. To purchase 2009-10 season tickets, Flex Tix or individual game tickets, please call the Providence Bruins ticket office at (401) 273-5000 or log on to the team website at www.providencebruins.com.