There were games in every series but Texas-OKC on Friday night. And a few went to overtime, on the 10th anniversary of the last Game 7 played in Bridgeport, the last time the Sound Tigers had a playoff series end at home. And among those games: One involving the team that won that game 10 years ago. A bunch of potential goals were disallowed, including one for Binghamton (kicked in) in overtime. Anton Zlobin had no such troubles for the Penguins, who take a 1-0 lead in their first win this year in what’d been a house of horrors like Providence used to be for Bridgeport.
Zlobin’s goal continued a wild trend for road teams, which also included Providence. Matt Fraser got the Bruins even in their series against the Falcons; Game 3 is Saturday in Springfield. It even held true in the Rumored Conference: Chicago trailed 3-1 and was short-handed with five minutes to go in regulation at Rochester. And the Wolves won on Dmitrij Jaskin’s goal 66 seconds into overtime. Former Sound Tiger Michael Davies assisted on Mark Cundari’s tying goal and Jaskin’s winner.
Edit: It’s the most AHL playoff games to overtime in one day in 13 years, since the spring before Bridgeport played its first game.
Not needing overtime: Sean Backman had the first one as Manchester jumped on top of Norfolk with a 2-0 win. (The Monarchs, as we mentioned Saturday, chose to start at home, so they’d better make hay.) And in Albany, Ben Chiarot’s late goal gave St. John’s a win in Game 1. (Nice crowd at the Times Union Center.)
Trevor Smith had an assist as Toronto jumped on top of Milwaukee (two short-handed empty-netters broke that open). And Abbotsford-Grand Rapids is underway at this writing. Edit: And it was underway for a long while until Ryan Sproul’s shot found its way home at 39:26.6 of overtime, the longest AHL game in almost three years. The Griffins kept the road trend up.
All eight series in action tomorrow.
Bakersfield is also playing against Utah tonight in a Game 5 (edit: Bakersfield won 5-0 behind three points from former Providence Bruin Jordan Knackstedt; Joel Broda had a goal, and Greg Miller had an assist); a Condors win moves them on to face Stockton, while Utah needs a win to force Game 6. Greg Miller was instrumental in some crazy drama in Game 4. (Edit2: Did I ever mention onetime Sound Tiger Wes Cunningham is there, too? Hey: Wes Cunningham’s there, too.)
Erie’s out of the OHL playoffs, so no Memorial Cup for Adam Pelech.