Providence Bruins

Sep 27, 2019


SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – The Providence Bruins opened preseason play on Friday with a 4-3 overtime victory over the Springfield Thunderbirds at MassMutual Center. Jakub Lauko scored twice for Providence, including the game-winning goal, while Cooper Zech and Tommy Marchin also scored for the Bruins. Dan Vladar made 34 saves on 37 shots in the win.

"Overall, there were a lot of positives,” said Jay Leach, head coach of the Bruins. “I think we caught our breath after the first period, clawed our way back in the second and the third was back-and-forth. Then, obviously, Lauko came up with a nice shot at the end there to win it for us. Overall, there were a lot of positives. As the game went along we were able to find some unity and ultimately we got the win.”

Springfield opened the scoring at the 8:07 mark of the first period when Daniel Audette redirected a pass from Paul Thompson into the top left corner of the net. Following a successful penalty kill by Providence, the Thunderbirds doubled the lead with just 1:24 remaining in the opening frame. After Vladar made a pad save in tight, Matt Marcinew jumped on the loose rebound to give Springfield a 2-0 advantage.

Providence came out of the locker room energized to start the second period and got on the board 4:34 into the stanza. After collecting a saucer pass from Samuel Asselin in the neutral zone, Lauko sped into the offensive zone before beating Philippe Desrosiers over the blocker to shrink Springfield’s lead to one.

The Bruins continued to apply pressure in the offensive zone and tied the game at the 11:10 mark of the second period. Pavel Shen fed a pass across the zone to Robert Lantosi, who found Zech at the point. Zech collected the pass and fired a shot through traffic that found the back of the net and tied the game at two.

As the Bruins continued to generate chances, Springfield was whistled for a penalty just after the midway point of the second period. On the ensuing power play, Marchin found a loose puck in the slot and beat Desrosiers on the short side to give Providence a 3-2 lead. The Bruins took the lead into the intermission after outshooting Springfield 19-7 in the second period.

After scoring his first goal with Providence in the second period, Lauko’s busy night continued early on in the third. Shortly after the start of the period, Vladar was ran into by Matthew Wedman, prompting Lauko to respond by dropping the gloves for the first fight of his professional hockey career.

After the fight between Lauko and Wedman, Springfield knotted the score at three with 12:47 remaining in the period. Audette skated into the Providence zone before dropping the puck to Thompson, who collected the pass in the high slot and beat Vladar with a wrist shot to the far side.

With 2:12 remaining in the period, Providence was whistled for a slash that sent Springfield to the power play. Shortly after, a hooking penalty against the Bruins gave the Thunderbirds a 5-on-3 advantage with 1:32 remaining.

After Providence killed off the first penalty, the Thunderbirds opened overtime with a 4-on-3 power play for 28 seconds. Following another successful penalty kill by the Bruins, Lantosi found Lauko, who fired a wrist shot past Desrosiers to end the game. Lauko’s second goal of the game came at the 1:05 mark with Axel Andersson picking up the second assist.

The Bruins return to action tomorrow night at Dunkin’ Donuts Center when it faces the Thunderbirds for the second time in as many nights. Puck drop is set for 7:05pm.

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The Providence Bruins are the American Hockey League affiliate of the NHL’s Boston Bruins, playing their home games at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center in Providence, RI. Spanning more than 25 years, the Boston/Providence affiliation is one of the longest and most successful player development partnerships in professional hockey history.

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