Two minds afterward about this one, and even the one mind kind of came around to where the other was.
“I’m disappointed we didn’t generate more offense,” Brent Thompson said, “more secondary chances, get in the goalie’s eyes. Maybe a lot of our shots were from the outside.
“Looking back, and I’ll probably confirm it with the video, but yeah, a lot of shots. Their goalie played well. We got a lot of shots in the slot. For me, obviously, it’s a disappointing game. We knew what to expect from these guys, and we didn’t quite execute some of the systems stuff as far as defending the rush well.”
We’ll get back to the rush, but the chances came from all over. Springfield blocked a bunch of shots, too; I had at least 14. And they still allowed 42 shots on Samuel Montembeault.
They came from lots of Sound Tigers players, but they mostly came from Dal Colle – Koivula – Ho-Sang.
“We were cookin’,” Ho-Sang said. “Otto’s a great player. I’ve been playing with Michael all year. It’s kind of self-explanatory. Just tough bounces.
“(Montembeault) is amazing. Sometimes you’ve just got to tip your hat. He was first star, right?”
Coulda been; they went with Anthony Greco’s hat trick, which gives him 22 points in 26 games against the Sound Tigers, including four of his seven career multi-goal games. But we digress again.
Ho-Sang, a game after sitting most of the third period, was everywhere. He was creative. He put five shots on goal, which is a pro-career high. He made a couple of memorable defensive plays, coming back to deny Greco a short-handed chance in the second period (which turned into offense, a Kieffer Bellows shot on the Bridgeport rush), skating hard to catch Paul Thompson on what might’ve been an empty-net breakaway.
“The key for any kind of success is effort,” Thompson (Brent) said on Ho-Sang. “I thought that was noticeable tonight.”
Did we promise to come back to the rushes? Ehh, why not. The 3-1 goal was a three-on-two on which both Seth Helgeson and Chris Casto wound up on Jonathan Ang in the middle, who still dropped it left to Jayce Hawryluk, who found Patrick Bajkov in the middle open, a step ahead of Michael Dal Colle all the way. Dal Colle in the past was sometimes slow coming back in spots like that, and though numerous things went wrong on that goal, that’s the closest we’ve seen to that this year from him. “Miscommunicated with the D,” he said, and that’s more obvious on video than it was live. “(Springfield) made a nice play.”
The other was kind of a mess, Bridgeport defenders missing the puck at a few junctures up the ice, Thomas Schemitsch trying to shoot on what was more or less a four-on-two, missing, but still getting it across to Hawryluk, who’d’ve been lonesome if Jacob MacDonald wasn’t the closest guy to him.
“They’re opportunistic on the rushes,” Thompson said.
“You know they’re going to attack on the rush. That’s one of their assets, their speed. Tracking was a key, and gaps. Some of those things, you look back, you’ve got to clean those up. The game of hockey is who makes more mistakes, and who capitalizes. They capitalized.”
Thompson reiterated day-to-day on Devon Toews. “Hopefully he’ll be ready this weekend. We’ll see what happens.”
Only one Springfield power play. The fans in front of us at least were not happy about that. (They also wanted Springfield to shoot more on that one.) Bridgeport, meanwhile, had a five-on-three late in the second; Thunderbirds got a clear off the draw to kill much of that.
Final teddy-bear toss count from last Friday, per the team: 913.
Greco’s first pro hat trick. Had at least one in college. Did not have one that night in Toronto. In 26 games against Bridgeport since, he’s 14-8-22 with 83 shots.
Jan Kovar practiced with Boston today
Westport’s Rebecca Russo, Isobel Cup champion, tweeted that she’ll be at the Sound Tigers’ Feb. 17 game against Charlotte for Connecticut Girls Hockey Day. Speaking of Southern Connecticut, taking over hockey one player at a time, Melissa Samoskevich of Newtown will attend USA Hockey’s winter camp.
Sacred Heart is home this weekend at the arena, Friday night and Saturday at 2, against Robert Morris.
Sound Tigers’ schedule for tomorrow was still to be determined as they departed, and apparently still now as we depart, so let’s leave it at more as it comes?