They allowed only 13 shots last night, and Belleville just about doubled that tonight, had five alone in the first 8:07 of the second period.
That’s when Bridgeport made it 3-0.
That first eight minutes of the second was about the only time the Senators really felt threatening. They hemmed Bridgeport in for a while a couple of times.
The last time, Kane Lafranchise broke it out up the right wing, the Senators puck-stared, Lafranchise second-efforted through a guy and set up Ben Holmstrom for that third goal.
“Our defensive zone has definitely picked up lately,” Lafranchise said. “Even when they’re pressuring us, when they’ve been in our end, we’re not bending. We’re not breaking. Everybody’s working out from the middle and sticking to the system. We’re playing consistently.”
Two early goals made it a lot easier; Christopher Gibson was sharp again. They needed a good one after a tough one Friday, and they got it.
“Any time you get a win the next night, it’s a great response game,” Brent Thompson said. “I thought the guys played hard. That team’s fast. They’re very big. They’re very strong. I thought we did a good job defending.”
Belleville… For as big and strong and fast as they may be, it looks like a struggle over there. They’ve now allowed 61 first-period goals; no other team went into Saturday allowing more than 48. The only teams that had allowed 60 in any given period were Hershey and Texas: both were third periods, and both have 10 empty-net goals against their ledger.
This was, basically, a game Bridgeport needed to win. It did so relatively efficiently. Back to the division on Wednesday.
“I thought Ho-Sang’s game improved,” said Thompson, who thought the puck was bouncing early; the puck was on Ho-Sang’s stick a lot tonight. “I thought Dal Colle was a little more intense. There are definitely steps in the right direction.”
Ben Holmstrom’s last two-goal game. He had another earlier that month, and those are his only two.
Jon Landry in the house. Recently engaged.
Weird bit found going through Bridgeport 1-0 games: The Sound Tigers have won 1-0 a total of 20 times, including the shootout win over Toronto last month. Of those 19 lone goals, two were on power plays. The Sound Tigers have lost 1-0, in all, 14 times, and 10 of those goals were power-play goals, including two in overtime (and one of those five-on-four). One was short-handed.
Prescout (bright and early Wednesday!). The Pack is coming around strong, now only two points behind Charlotte, which lost a shootout in at least two senses of the word in Hershey to fall a point behind the Sound Tigers. Bridgeport and the Checkers have two games in hand on Hartford, though.
AHL dealin’ out west sending Longmeadow, Mass.’s, Tyler Kelleher to Texas.
Fan wearing a Warren Harper Hershey sweater tonight.
Congrats to our old bud Grady Whittenburg on his NHL debut.
Jeff Jacobs on Carolina’s wanting to wear Whalers sweaters.
Final “Binghamton” count, on paper and on screen: Appears to be eight. Much lower than I expected.
More Monday. Enjoy that football game or whatever.