Hartford Wolf Pack 3, Providence Bruins 2
Providence, RI, January 5, 2018 – The Hartford Wolf Pack snapped a three-game losing streak Friday night, with a 3-2 victory over the Eastern Conference-leading Providence Bruins at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center Providence.
The Wolf Pack built a 3-0 lead through the first two periods, and then withstood a two-goal Bruin rally in the third. Marek Mazanec made 37 saves in the Hartford net, as the Wolf Pack were outshot by a margin of 39-25.
John Gilmour’s early second-period goal ended up being the game-winner, and Steven Fogarty and Chris Langkow also scored for the Wolf Pack. Jordan Szwarz and Peter Cehlarik had the Providence goals.
The Wolf Pack opened the scoring just 1:20 into their first game of 2018, on Fogarty’s sixth goal of the season. Anthony DeAngelo broke up a Tommy Cross clearing attempt along the boards, to the left of Bruin starting goaltender Zane McIntyre, and the puck came to Fogarty. He darted toward the net and flicked a shot past McIntyre high to the glove side.
Exactly six minutes later, at 7:20, the Wolf Pack made it a 2-0 lead, with Langkow scoring his first goal in three games since joining the Wolf Pack. Langkow fed the puck to Joe Whitney at the right side of the slot and headed to the front of the net, and after McIntyre stopped Whitney’s shot, Langkow slid the rebound in backhanded.
“We had strong structure to our game,” Wolf Pack head coach Keith McCambridge said. “We were able to play an aggressive forecheck to get some momentum on our side early in the game. Obviously scoring the first goal is very important whether it’s home or away, but definitely if you’re able to take the crowd out of it, it works to your benefit.”
The Wolf Pack got an early goal in the second as well, as Gilmour made it a 3-0 advantage at the 2:55 mark, and that turned out to be the only scoring of the middle frame.
After Gilmour, who was announced Thursday as a member of the Atlantic Division team for the upcoming 2018 AHL All-Star Classic in Utica, held the zone on the left side, he and Gabriel Fontaine exchanged the puck and Gilmour moved down from his point position and put a shot past McIntyre’s catching glove.
The Bruins made a goaltending change at that point, replacing McIntyre, who made seven saves, with Jordan Binnington, and he would go on to stop all 15 shots he would face the rest of the way.
Providence controlled much of the play in the third period, outshooting the Wolf Pack 16-4, and Szwarz ended Mazanec’s shutout bid at 5:52. After a good Hartford chance failed to click, the Bruins headed the other way with an odd-man break. Szwarz and Austin Czarnik attacked the net on a two-on-one, and Czarnik set Szwarz up with an open look on the left side.
Cehlarik then cut the margin to one with 5:19 remaining, in his first game back from a recall stint with the parent Boston Bruins club that dated back to November 13. After Cross and Anders Bjork worked a give-and-go, Cross found Cehlarik wide open at the right side of the goalmouth for an easy finish.
The Wolf Pack and Mazanec held their ground after that, though, and the Wolf Pack had their second straight win in head-to-head competition with the first-place Bruins.
“We’re always learning, and making sure that we’re aware of what we need to be doing on the ice,” McCambridge said, “and you’ve got to give Providence credit, they’re second overall in the American Hockey League for a reason, and they showed that in the third when they were pushing. But at the end of the day, we were able to play with more poise, and finish that game off and get the two points.”
The Wolf Pack are back home at the XL Center on Saturday night, for a 7:00 contest vs. the Syracuse Crunch. The first 2,000 fans into that game will receive a free Wolf Pack scarf, presented by Aetna.
Tickets for all Wolf Pack 2017-18 home games are on sale now at the Agera Energy Ticket Office at the XL Center, on-line at www.hartfordwolfpack.com and by phone at (877) 522-8499.
Season ticket information for the Wolf Pack’s 2017-18 AHL season can be found on-line at www.hartfordwolfpack.com. To speak with a representative about all of the Wolf Pack’s many attractive ticketing options, call (855) 762-6451.
Hartford Wolf Pack 3 at Providence Bruins 2
Friday, January 5, 2018 – Dunkin’ Donuts Center
Hartford 2 1 0 – 3
Providence 0 0 2 – 2
1st Period-1, Hartford, Fogarty 6 (DeAngelo), 1:20. 2, Hartford, Langkow 1 (Whitney, Chapie), 7:20. Penalties-Tambellini Hfd (interference), 11:15; Porter Pro (slashing), 17:42.
2nd Period-3, Hartford, Gilmour 6 (Fontaine), 2:55. Penalties-Crawley Hfd (high-sticking), 19:21; Zboril Pro (slashing), 19:35.
3rd Period-4, Providence, Szwarz 11 (Czarnik, Johansson), 5:52. 5, Providence, Cehlarik 4 (Cross, Bjork), 14:41. Penalties-No Penalties
Shots on Goal-Hartford 9-12-4-25. Providence 12-11-16-39.
Power Play Opportunities-Hartford 0 / 2; Providence 0 / 2.
Goalies-Hartford, Mazanec 5-1-1 (39 shots-37 saves). Providence, McIntyre 11-7-2 (10 shots-7 saves); Binnington 9-1-1 (15 shots-15 saves).
Referees-Jarrod Ragusin (2), Michael Mullen (7).
Linesmen-Kenneth Gates (91), William Brennan (31).