P-BRUINS NO MATCH FOR CHECKERS
McGrattan Scores First AHL Goal Since 2004-05
Providence, RI - The Providence Bruins fell to the Charlotte Checkers 6-2 on Friday evening at the Dunkin' Donuts Center. The P-Bruins received goals from veteran forwards David Ling and Brian McGrattan.
The Checkers showed no signs of having bus legs as they came out flying and struck first at the 3:50 mark. Rookie Zac Dalpe collected a Providence turnover and blanked Michael Hutchinson from the slot. Jacob Micflikier and Brett Bellemore assisted on the opening goal. Shortly after, two consecutive Charlotte penalties gave Providence a nearly full two-minute two-man advantage. Despite several opportunities on the five-on-three, Justin Pogge blocked all of the P-Bruins' attempts. The play went back and forth for the remainder of the period with Max Sauvé and Jordan Caron leading Providence's offensive surges. The goal lamp was lit with 2:07 to go in the frame, tying the game at one, but the goal was waived off as Pogge had control of the puck at the whistle.
Providence carried over the momentum from the goal called off late in the first and capitalized on its third power play of the game. A quick drop pass from Sauve low in the Checkers' corner allowed Joe Colborne to test Pogge, who couldn't hold onto the rebound allowing Ling to tally his fourth goal of the season 5:13 into the frame. The Checkers answered only ten seconds later to regain the lead when Oskar Osala stunned Hutchinson right off the face-off. Jon Matsumoto and Matthew Pistilli assisted on the play. Charlotte got on the board again five minutes later when Riley Nash beat Hutchinson stick side for the unassisted goal. Out-shooting the Checkers and with a two-goal deficit, the P-Bruins' frustrations began to boil when Nathan McIver dropped the gloves with Brad Herauf. Landing right after right on Herauf, McIver picked up his tenth fighting major of the season and his 76th penalty minute.
Career tough-guy McGrattan, notching his first goal and point of the season, brought the P-Bruins within one goal three minutes into the period when he beat Pogge from the low right corner. McIver and Sean Zimmerman assisted on the goal. Providence continued to ride the momentum of McGrattan's goal, getting chances from Zach Hamill and Jeff Penner. However, Charlotte capitalized at the 14:03 mark for a power play goal from Osala off the help of Jerome Samson and Nash. Just over a minute later, Chris Terry sniped a shot over Hutchinson's shoulder. Samson picked up his second assist on the play. Brett Sutter put the game away with a short-handed empty net goal with 50 seconds to play in the game. Pogge assisted on the Checkers' sixth goal.
Hutchinson suffered the loss, blocking 25 attempts, while Pogge stopped 28 of 30 shots. Providence went 1-for-6 on the power play and 3-for-4 on the penalty kill.
After tonight's game, the P-Bruins travel to Hershey for a 7 p.m. tilt on Saturday. The weekend wraps up on Sunday as Providence hosts Springfield at 4:05 p.m. for a Hand Sanitizer Night. To purchase tickets or for more information, call the P-Bruins ticket office at 401-273-5000 or log on to the team website at providencebruins.com.
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