Providence Bruins

Mar 26, 2018

P-BRUINS WEEK IN REVIEW: 3/21/18 – 3/26/18

Providence, RI – The Providence Bruins have just 10 games remaining on their regular season schedule, but after a sweep of the first place Lehigh Valley Phantoms this weekend the postseason is all but locked up. By taking all four possible points, the P-Bruins jumped into second place over the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins in the Atlantic Division and fourth place overall in the Eastern Conference. Their record of 40-21-3-2 and 85 points also put them fourth overall in the AHL. The team is on pace to allow their fewest goals in a season since 2002-03, a span of 14 years dating back to when Tim Thomas and Hannu Toivonen manned the net for Providence.

At home for their annual “Star Wars Weekend,” Ryan Fitzgerald sent the fans home happy Friday with a two-goal performance that included an overtime game-winner. Providence held four different leads in regulation, but a late goal from the Phantoms sent the game to overtime. Just 1:06 into the extra frame, Fitzgerald netted his second goal of the game to give the P-Bruins a 5-4 win. Saturday’s affair was not as close with Providence’s offense dominating Lehigh Valley throughout the game. The team scored two goals in each period with Peter Cehlarik and Joona Koppanen each scoring twice in a 6-1 rout of the Phantoms.

Fitzgerald, Cehlarik, Koppanen and Colby Cave each had two goals over the weekend with Cehlarik (two goals, two assists) and Kenny Agostino (four assists) leading the way with four points each. Agostino, Cehlarik, Cave and Johansson scored in each of the two games while Johansson led the way with a rating of plus-five. Boston Bruins first-round pick Trent Frederic also scored his first pro goal in Friday’s game. Austin Czarnik only had one point this weekend, but he continues to lead the team in goals, assists and scoring.

Each of Providence’s two goaltenders made a start this weekend with Zane McIntyre starting Friday and Jordan Binnington getting the nod Saturday. McIntyre stopped 27 of 31 shots to earn his 23rd win of the season, a mark that is fourth among all AHL goalies. Binnington stopped 18 of 19 shots, lowering his goals-against average to 1.97 and raising his save percentage to 92.8% (both good for third best in the AHL).

The P-Bruins can clinch a playoff spot as early as this week as their magic number is down to eight points. It will be a challenging task, however, as they head out for a four-game road trip starting with three in Pennsylvania. They travel to Wilkes-Barre for a 7:05pm faceoff with the Penguins Wednesday before heading to Allentown Friday for a 7pm matchup with the Phantoms. The team closes out the weekend Saturday when they head back to Wilkes-Barre for a 7:05pm tilt against the Penguins in a game that could determine seeding for the 2018 Calder Cup Playoffs.

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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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