Feb. 22 has actually been a pretty interesting midseason day for the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. They spent their first two Feb. 22s in Springfield, actually. In 2002, it was the ninth game of the nine-game winning streak that (a) followed the absolute debacle in Springfield of Feb. 1 (300-plus penalty minutes aside), and (b) more or less shot them to the upper echelon of the league.
A year later they came back and won 4-2 as Scott Stirling improved to 7-0; Trent Hunter was sick that night but came back with a hat trick the next night in Binghamton.
The next Feb. 22 game was in 2006. It was pushed back a couple of weeks to get a Cirque du Soleil show into town. That night, Sean Bergenheim became the first, and so far only, Sound Tiger to score four goals in one game.
Five years ago, Bridgeport went up to Albany riding a five-game winning streak that had moved them into playoff position. It took them four hours through the snow and ice. (I’d gone up the night before and couldn’t sleep.) It turns out to be Brandon Nolan’s last game, hit cleanly by Scott Ford and suffering a concussion. But it also turns out to be a pivotal loss; Albany outpoints them 4-1 that weekend, takes charge of the race for fourth.
The next year that strong Bridgeport team beat Portland pretty handily amid the “March of Doom” that turned out not to be so doomish. And that’s the last time the Sound Tigers played on a Feb. 22 until today, when they named a captain and their parent club dropped something of a bomb.
(Feb. 22 is of course a kind of big day in American hockey history, period. But we digress.)
Some changes from the last time out throughout; it actually looks a little different than it did this morning. Kevin Poulin’s start, though, is not one of the differences; will see afterward if there’s any more details about his immediate future and what the tandem will look like tomorrow night.
One to scratch.
D: Donovan-Wishart (A)
Audy-Marchessault – Johansen – Kubalik
R: Skilliter. L: Colby, C. Low.