P-BRUINS AIM FOR HOME-AND-HOME SWEEP OF SHARKS
Providence Battles Worcester for Final Time in 2010-11
Providence, RI - The Providence Bruins (35-35-3-3, 76 PTS, 5th Atlantic) host the Worcester Sharks (35-29-4-8, 82 PTS, 4th Atlantic) this afternoon at the Dunkin' Donuts Center for the teams' final meeting in 2010-11. This season, the P-Bruins are 5-4-1-1 against the Sharks, with a 2-2-0-1 mark at the Dunk.
Providence won the first half of its final home-and-home series of the season, besting the Sharks 4-1 at the DCU Center on Saturday. Jamie Arniel and Maxime Sauve each notched multiple-point games with a goal and an assist apiece, and Michael Hutchinson stopped 33 of the 34 Sharks shots. Lane MacDermid also added a goal, and Jeremy Reich's empty netter sealed the deal.
The Sharks have their work cut out for them, currently sitting two points out of a playoff spot. While Portland and Manchester have already clinched their postseason berths in the Atlantic, two slots remain and the East's Binghamton Senators are likely to cross-over and grab one vacancy. The Sens have 87 points, three ahead of Connecticut and five over Worcester. All three teams have four games to play and all are in action today.
Arniel's 49 points and 23 goals are both Providence highs, while Zach Hamill leads the P-Bruins with 32 assists. On the other side, injured forward Jonathan Cheechoo sits atop the Sharks' leader board in goals (18), assists (29) and overall points (47).
P-Bruins goalie Anton Khudobin is 26-15-2 with a 2.51 GAA, .912 save percentage and two shutouts this season, having played 13 games for the Baby B's since his trade from Minnesota. Hutchinson has played each of the last two games and is 12-10-1 with a 3.18 GAA, .902 save percentage and one shutout for Providence. For Worcester, Carter Hutton is the leading active goaltender in every major category. He has a record of 11-6-2, a 2.85 GAA and a .907 save percentage, plus two shutouts on the year.
Arniel and Benn Ferriero are tied for the series lead in goals and points against today's opponent, with matching 4-4-8 lines. MacDonald leads the P-Bruins and all players in the series with seven assists, while Sean Sullivan has a Sharks-high five helpers against Providence.
Khudobin edges out Hutton in GAA (1.50 to 1.92) and save percentage (.946 to .941) in the head-to-head series. Khudobin has a 2-0-0 mark, while Hutton is 2-2-0 in his contests against Providence.
The P-Bruins rank 29th in the AHL on the power play (13.4%) and 27th on the penalty kill (78.7%). The Sharks are 19th with the man advantage (17.6%) and 25th when killing off penalties (80.3%).
The P-Bruins will be home again on Friday night to take on the Portland Pirates for the final time in the 2010-11 season. It's a 7:05 p.m. puck drop for Keychain Night, free to the first 1,000 fans. To purchase tickets or for more information, call the Providence Bruins' ticket office at (401) 273-5000 or log on to the team website at providencebruins.com.
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