Things they don’t do, Brent Thompson said, they did tonight.
“Big defensive breakdowns,” Thompson said. “The penalty kill, we vacated the slot. Defensive-zone coverage that one time (Jordan Szwarz’s goal); we vacated the slot. A breakdown on the rush: We backed in, a defenseman beat us up the ice.”
Providence had the big early edge, but Bridgeport battled back, stepped up, got a lead. But Anton Blidh got the puck past Andre Benoit to send Matt Beleskey out two-on-one, and it was 1-1.
Szwarz tips one in early second, with Bridgeport maybe not quite recombobulated after a neutral-zone turnover. Colton Hargrove scores on a tic-tac-toe setup, yes, alone in the slot, with all four guys below him. Emil Johansson accelerates to join a three-on-three rush, gets a step on Scott Eansor: 4-1.
Bridgeport came back, but like the Springfield game early in this little dip they’re in, like the Hartford morning game, they didn’t get two points out of it.
Two big ones to come this weekend.
I worry sometimes (OK, a lot) that Twitter obsesses too much over where Josh Ho-Sang appears in the lineup, with whom and in what order he rushes. Not sure you’d have called this fact, for instance, after he’d played with St. Denis and Eansor for most of January, before he went and ended that streak later on at four-on-four, getting the second assist on Kane Lafranchise’s first of the year. In general tonight, though, “Ho-Sang was excellent,” Thompson said. “He was competing. He was engaged emotionally. He was really engaged in the game. His effort level, he was moving his feet, competing. … He was working. You’ve seen, the last couple of games, he’s taking steps.” He broke up a couple of plays in the defensive zone with his stick, I thought. “He tracked pretty well. It was a great step for him.”
Speaking of Jones, he did this at the other end of the rink so I couldn’t even tell it happened, but a nifty little feed to Casey Bailey on Bridgeport’s second goal. “Every so often, I think I surprise Tommer,” Jones said. “I thought I could get it to Bails. If I did, it’d be a good scoring chance. If I didn’t, I would’ve regretted not shooting.”
Forgot to link it yesterday: Yanick Turcotte scored his first pro goal Wednesday at Adirondack in a shootout win. The Railers lost at Reading on Thursday. Chris Langkow has 12 points in the past 12 games.
Alex Prewitt in Sports Illustrated on Sebastian Aho and Sebastian Aho.
Hartford sent Eric Selleck to Belleville yesterday. The Pack and Hershey played one wacky last 2:03 in the 860 tonight. Joe Whitney has seven points in six games with the Bears after 19 in 40 with Hartford.
Thought about pitching a Jeremy Colliton/John Hayden road trip to Wilkes-Barre today, but didn’t happen. Rockford lost 6-3 to the Penguins.
The latest Olympic stunner: Germany built a three-goal lead on Canada and held on to win 4-3. The Germans clinch a medal for the first time since West Germany took bronze in 1976. Canada is forced to fight for bronze against the Czech Republic, which lost 3-0 to Russia.
There is a Patty Kazmaier Award finalist from Morris Park in the Bronx, and yesterday couldn’t get much better after that news.
And to finish on a high note, if you ignore everything in this interview except the Bitsy Eliases, it is the greatest interview ever.