Shots on goal don’t always reflect the flow of a game, the territory of a game, the possession in a game.
But for two periods, these kinda did. Actually, so did the third’s, but we digress.
Bridgeport led 2-0 though the IceCaps had an edge in shots and in chances, in part because of one busy shift when Bridgeport’s fourth line started in its own zone. The IceCaps made their breaks, took over the edge in chances even more — there was a long swath of the second when Bridgeport didn’t put much of anything on net — capitalized when they got open, got two goals on nice shots by defensemen and won the game.
Ben Chiarot opened the Caps’ scoring off a cross-ice pass with one back against the grain over the glove and off the elbow and in. Justin Brouillette stepped up to the dot, fired one over Poulin’s blocker and under the bar for the game-winner. There was a floater in between off a quick St. John’s regroup, a three-on-three that Poulin said went through a screen; there was traffic going to the net. Good things happen, etc.
“I thought Kevin Poulin played well,” Thompson said. “He made some big saves early. For me, that’s a plus, too. … He looked in control. There weren’t a lot of rebounds.”
Work to be done. Work in progress. Learning curve. Heard variations on all those all week and again tonight. It won’t be helped with Aaron Ness missing; Thompson didn’t have an immediate update on the captain, who left favoring his right leg midway through the game.
But they had good moments, things to build on. And in the third, they came out with three strong shifts in a row; in the last five minutes, they had a few great chances that Connor Hellebuyck denied.
“At least we got those chances,” Thompson said.
A second try against the same team tomorrow. One down, 75 to go.
One power play for Bridgeport tonight. A potential second negated in retaliation.
Two goals for Mouillierat. “It always feels good to get off to a good start,” Mouillierat said. “If you don’t score in the first couple, you’re going to start holding the stick a little tighter.” But it’s a different feeling after a loss. “He’d probably give back those goals to have a win more than anything,” Thompson said.
Bridgeport swapped Mike Halmo and Sebastian Collberg for the third period, putting Halmo back with Anders Lee and Collberg with John Persson and Alan Quine. “Just trying to get chemistry, create opportunities,” Thompson said. “It was a stalemate the first 40 minutes.”
A three-on-three goal in overtime: It has begun. Four goals for Paul Thompson to spoil Adirondack’s home opener. Trevor Gillies sat out the automatic one-game suspension for his last-five-minutes instigator penalty. The league’s review of the rest of that mess is still to come. A goal for that noted sniper Steve Oleksy in Hershey’s loss. (Two for Mouillierat, an assist for Blair Riley.) An assist for Nathan McIver in that one for Norfolk.
— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) October 12, 2014