The penalty kill had come around the past five games. Less so today, giving up two on a boarding major (5-foot-11, 186-pound Sebastian Collberg) and one on a five-on-three. Ballgame.
Sort of. Bridgeport fought its way back, one of its most dominant games at even strength in a while, helped by the defense getting involved all over the place.
“It’s useful when you have an extra layer of attack,” Alan Quine said.
Four Bridgeport defensemen had half the team’s shots through two periods. They were picking their spots to jump up, to lead the rush (Ryan Pulock lugging the mail; Aaron Ness, as tweeted, went the full Blake Comeau earlier on the shift that turned into the tying goal, was flying all third).
“They’ve always had the green light to join,” Thompson said. “We’ve always wanted our defense to activate. Our D was solid. I’m very happy with the D. If you look at the game, some minor brain cramps end up costing us.”
“I think it’s something we’ve been working on, focusing on the last little while here,” Pulock said, “whether it’s us defensemen getting shots through from the blue line, being the fourth man in the rush.”
It helped. They forced turnovers. Points don’t mean much in the bigger picture now, eliminated from the playoffs, but they’ve got plenty of pride and are out to win games. They probably deserved one today.
The Bears clinched a playoff spot, and as captain Steve Oleksy said postgame, nice to have that out of the way early.
This season from this side has kind of devolved into a series of charts about statistics, so here’s a newer one of something we’ve mentioned:
(Through 3/29/15. Italic: defenseman record.)
Ryan Pulock’s goal-scoring is also on the cusp of recordy stuff. Bruno Gervais scored 16 goals in 2005-06; Pulock’s up to 15. He’d already blown by Gervais’ team record for power-play goals in a season by a defenseman, nine that year. Gervais had 13 power-play goals in his career, so now Pulock’s one behind that just this year. Only five Sound Tigers have had more power-play goals in a season; Jeff Hamilton’s 20 in 2003-04 seems safe, but you never know.
Liked Mayfield’s game in all three zones in particular tonight. “Personally, my offense, points-wise, has not been there as much as last year,” he said. “I think I’m getting chances more and more as the year has progressed. I’m running out of time,” he said with a laugh.” But he’s concerned with the defensive zone, and he’s still working on that, too.
And I asked if he thought he had that one in the second period. He didn’t think so on that one (Quine’s 20th), but the one in Syracuse on Friday (Quine’s 19th), he wasn’t so sure about. I only happened to look it up last night: This was 80 games for him without a goal, since last Feb. 16.
Team’s off tomorrow; back to work Tuesday, then Spring Fun 802 or whatever we’re up to on Wednesday.
Here’s UVM’s release on Colin Markison’s signing with Bridgeport.
Prescout. See you bright and early.
Pat Eaton-Robb of the AP on Kia Nurse, Darnell’s sister, and playing basketball instead of hockey (“You would think your brother would have taught you to stop at some point in your life. But, no”). I didn’t catch for whom she plays. Should check that link out again.
And RIP, former Rangers equipment manager Joe Murphy, a guy from the Bronx. Acquaintance of some family members and from all accounts a nice guy.