Good, bad & ugly from Providence Bruins weekend

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The ending could have been better, but on balance the Providence Bruins had a good weekend, earning four out of six points in three home games.

They blitzed the Binghamton Devils, 6-2, on Friday and edged the Utica Comets, 3-2, in a shootout on Saturday, before losing, 4-1, to the Hartford Wolf Pack on Sunday.

“We’ve had a good run the last couple of weeks,’’ said coach Jay Leach. “I’m not by any means going to get down on it, but (Sunday’s outcome is) certainly a bit of a reset button for us. ‘’

Here’s the good, bad and ugly.

GOOD

— Providence finished the weekend in second place in the Atlantic Division.

— Dan Vladar shut down Reid Boucher, the AHL’s leading goal scorer, in the shootout on Saturday, wrapping up the win.

— It was a strong weekend for Robert Lantosi. He scored the winner in the shootout against Utica and had two assists on both Friday and Saturday.

— It was good to hear that Jakub Lauko was feeling better on Sunday after being knocked out of the game when he apparently ran into the elbow of Utica’s Justin Bailey on Saturday.

— Max Lagace made a terrific save on Ben Street’s bid for a shorthanded goal halfway through the first period against Binghamton. Lagace is tied for second in the league with 11 wins.

— Josiah Didier is plus-16 in 26 games. That’s third in the AHL.

— Peter Cehlarik snapped a streak of 11 games without a goal when he scored on Friday.

— Paul Carey scored twice against Binghamton, then had a goal and an assist the next night against Utica. On his Saturday night goal, he made two very crafty plays. First, he went cross-corner with a long dump-in, knowing Robert Lantosi would beat the Utica defense and negate the icing. Lantosi did just that and fired the puck on the Comets’ net. Carey then caught up to the rebound near the boards on the left wing and, seeing that goalie Richard Bachman hadn’t recovered after the Lantosi shot, Carey quickly fired the puck into the net from a sharp angle for a goal. Later on, Carey had his stick in the passing lane and disrupted Utica’s breakout, leading to a goal by Brendan Gaunce. It’s fun to watch a player with Carey’s smarts.

— The P-Bruins were 3 for 11 on the power play in the three games.

— Joona Koppanen scored twice against Binghamton. With six goals in 17 games, he is much-improved from last season.

— Ryan Fitzgerald did a nice job on the forecheck, setting the stage for Providence’s first goal on Friday.

— The P-Bruins made two good skill plays within a minute against Binghamton, both resulting in goals. First, Jakub Lauko made a nice pass through a seam in front to Peter Ceharlik for a goal, then Jakub Zboril made a nifty one-touch feed to Joona Koppanen for a score.

— After a stretch of games where it looked like his confidence was fading, Cooper Zech has his swagger back. He had a goal and three assists against Binghamton and an assist against Hartford.

BAD

— That was some shoddy refereeing by Mike Dietrich late in regulation time against Utica. First, he made a very soft interference call against Oskar Steen of the P-Bruins for bumping Comets’ goalie Richard Bachman. Then, a minute later, he evened things up, whistling Utica’s Justin Bailey for a phantom hooking call.

— Trent Frederic is on pace for a six-goal season. He’d gone three straight games without a shot before recording two on Sunday.

— A failed clear by Peter Cehlarik led to Utica’s tying goal late in the third period.

— Cooper Zech had a strong weekend overall, as noted, but he had a tough turnover right in front of his own net on Sunday that handed Hartford its fourth goal.

UGLY

— It’s hard to watch a player being wheeled off on a stretcher, as Jakub Lauko was on Saturday.

— Injured: Chris Breen, Anton Blidh, Jakub Lauko

Good, bad & ugly from Providence Bruins week

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The Providence Bruins went on the road last week and won all three of their games.

They started with a scintillating 7-6 shootout victory in Hershey on Wednesday. The P-Bruins trailed, 3-0, 4-2 and 5-3, but kept coming back. They finally pulled out the win on shootout scores by Robert Lantosi and Jakub Lauko.

On Saturday in Charlotte, Providence broke open a one-goal game in the third period and came away with a 4-1 victory. On Sunday, they finished the trip with a 4-0 win in Charlotte.

“The season is really long and it doesn’t necessarily matter if the goalie gets the shutout or not. The most important part is those two points,’’ said Dan Vladar, who pitched a 36-save shutout in his first start after returning from injury. “We got six out of six (points) this week and that’s huge for our group.’’

Here’s the good, bad and ugly (actually, there’s very little bad and ugly).

GOOD

— The P-Bruins finished the weekend in first place in the Atlantic Division and third in points in the league. They’ve won four in a row, their longest win streak of the season.

— The P-Bruins scored three shorthanded goals in Sunday’s win and now lead the AHL in that category with eight. The PK, which was last in the league early in the season, is now seventh at 86.4 percent. They’ve killed the last 10.

— Urho Vaakanainen continues to play his best hockey of the season. He scored twice and now has seven points in his last five games.

— Brendan Woods is on fire with goals in three straight games and has 5-2-7 in his last five games.

— Providence leads the AHL with five shutouts – four by Max Lagace and one by Dan Vladar.

— After playing well in his first two NHL games with Boston, Jack Studnicka returned on Sunday and scored an empty-net goal and an assist. He has goals in six straight games.

— The fourth line had an excellent week. Joona Koppanen had 1-2-3 in three games, Sam Asselin has assists in three straight and Scott Conway scored a goal on Saturday.

— Max Lagace made a 10-bell save on Garrett Pilon in overtime in Hershey, allowing the P-Bruins to get to the shootout.

— Jakub Lauko blew past a Hershey defender to score a big goal on Wednesday, then won the game in the shootout.

— Oskar Steen broke a 14-game dry spell with a goal in Hershey.

— Pavel Shen scored  his first AHL goal on Sunday.

BAD

— Max Lagace allowed goals on four of the first seven shots in the second period in Hershey.

UGLY

— Injured: Chris Breen, Kyle Keyser, Anton Blidh

Good, bad & ugly from Providence Bruins weekend

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It was the best weekend of the season so far for the Providence Bruins as they earned five out of six points with two wins and an overtime loss.

They dominated Bridgeport, 5-0, at home on Friday, came from behind twice to earn a point in a 5-4 overtime road loss in Springfield on Saturday, then played very well in a 6-3 home win over Hershey on Sunday. They finished the weekend in second place in the Atlantic Division, trailing only Hartford.

“It was a good weekend,’’ said coach Jay Leach. “We obviously had a terrific game on Friday night. On Saturday, we had a terrible first period, but we rebounded, showed some character and really did a nice job.

“(On Sunday) I thought our first 35 minutes were really good. They got some life and it sounds ridiculous, but it is tough to play with a four-goal lead for an extended period of time. We knew (Hershey) would push but we did a nice job and it was awesome to see a guy like (Sean) Bonar in net get the win, which is always fun.’’

Here’s the good, bad and ugly.

GOOD

— Jack Studnicka continued his terrific play, taking over the team scoring lead. He scored a shorthanded goal on Friday, then sent Saturday’s game to overtime with a late goal. On Sunday, he scored a pivotal shorthanded goal and added two assists.

“He was our best forward. He was outstanding,’’ Leach said on Sunday. “That’s a big-time play (on his goal). He outmuscles a couple of guys and to finish in tight like that was pretty special.’’

Studnicka has goals in five straight games and is second in scoring among AHL rookies with 9-9-18 in 21 games.

— Studnicka’s linemates, Paul Carey and Ryan Fitzgerald, also had strong games on Sunday. Carey scored once and had two assists. Fitzgerald opened the scoring. He had a goal on Friday, too.

— Playing on the wing, Trent Frederic scored his first goal of the season on Friday, then added another one on Sunday.

— Urho Vaakanainen’s game is much improved in recent weeks. He had a pair of assists on Saturday, then scored twice and added an assist on Sunday.

— Brendan Gaunce scored twice and added an assist on Friday.

— Joona Koppanen scored a goal and set up Scott Conway for another as the P-Bruins erased a two-goal deficit in the second period in Springfield.

— Max Lagace posted his league-leading fourth shutout on Friday. His eight wins are tied for second in the AHL. His .930 save percentage is third.

— Providence’s third goal on Friday was a masterpiece of puck movement. It started with a strong zone entry by Peter Cehlarik, who pulled up and passed to Jakub Zboril. He quickly passed to Robert Lantosi, who put the puck on Brandan Gaunce’s stick for the score. Beautifully done.

— With Kyle Keyser and Dan Vladar injured, Sean Bonar was recalled from Atlanta and made 25 saves on Sunday to earn his first AHL win.

BAD

— Providence came up way short in the first period on Saturday . The P-Bruins took the lead on Robert Lantosi’s goal 19 seconds in, but were outshot, 22-10, and trailed 3-1 after 20 minutes.

— Providence’s next three are on the road, at Hershey followed by two in Charlotte.

UGLY

— Injured: Chris Breen, Anton Blidh, Kyle Keyser, Dan Vladar, Pavel Shen, Brendan Woods

Prospect progress report: Jack Studnicka

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PHOTO by CHRIS EMERSON/RISHOTS.com

A quarter of the way into his first full season as a pro, Jack Studnicka is in a good place.

The 20-year-old center is playing big minutes for the Providence Bruins and his game is trending upward.

With goals in four of the last five games, Studnicka is tied with Paul Carey and Alex Petrovic for the team scoring lead with 13 points (6 goals and 7 assists) in 18 games.

“He’s been good,’’ said coach Jay Leach. “The workload we’re giving him, for a 20-year-old kid, it’s impressive that he’s been able to handle all that. He plays in every situation. Obviously, he’s getting a tough matchup most nights.’’

Making the jump from the Ontario Hockey League requires some adjustment, but Studnicka is feeling more comfortable every day.

“It took a couple of games to get used to the schedule, the speed, the maintenance. I feel like I’m in full swing now and playing to my ability,’’ Studnicka said after practice on Thursday.

“I’ve been trying to come to the rink every game and work as hard as I can and do the details and kind of let the offense take care of itself. It’s nice to see that paying off and hopefully I can continue that going forward.

“I’m really trying to protect the puck down low, create some offensive zone time with the puck on my stick, kind of trying to feel out how teams in this league play in their D zone. Spin off guys, create space and look for an open play, be a playmaker and shoot when I can,’’ he said.

Studnicka is among the team leaders in ice time for forwards, averaging from 18 to 21 minutes per game, according to Leach.

“The No. 1 thing for him is he competes. Loves playing the game. He’s a really smart player. He’s shown that ability to find guys – I don’t know if I want to call it a next-level play — but he does have that ability to really see the ice well and make a play that I can’t say I’ve seen from everyone. That does set him apart,’’ said Leach.

“You can clearly tell he’s 20 years old and just growing into his body. We have to be careful with our expectations with someone like that.’’

Studnicka’s dad, who played for Maine in the 1980s, has visited twice. His mom is scheduled for a visit next month.

“This is kind of my first year living on my own. Me and Cooper Zech are living together, trying to cook, put some recipes together. We’re both in the same boat, trying to put some weight on, some good weight. We’re learning how to cook and, in our down time, watching hockey, watching movies, what any normal kid does,’’ he said.

As he works on his own game in the AHL, Studnicka naturally is paying attention to what’s going on with the parent club.

“I like to watch their games, but it’s tough when we’re playing and they’re playing (at the same time). I don’t go and rewatch or anything like that, but if they are on, I’m watching the game, for sure,’’ he said.

The goal, of course, is to be playing in, not watching, those NHL games, whether it’s later this season or next.

“No rush, in my mind. When called upon, I think I’m going to be ready, mentally and physically,’’ he said.

Good, bad & ugly from Providence Bruins weekend

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The Providence Bruins won one and lost one in a pair of games against the first-in-the-AHL Hartford Wolf Pack over the weekend.

At home on Friday, the P-Bruins looked to be in good shape with a two-goal lead and three minutes left, but the Wolf Pack tied the game with their goalie on the bench. Providence scored twice in the shootout to earn a 4-3 win.

“We didn’t close it the way we wanted to,’’ said coach Jay Leach, “but coming away with two points against a good team was great.’’

At Hartford on Saturday, Providence jumped out to a two-goal lead six minutes into the game before giving up five straight and losing, 5-2.

“It was probably one of the better games we’ve had for the first two periods. In the third, I don’t know whether we expended all our energy in the first two periods generating chances, but we did not have the push that we were looking for and, ultimately, it cost us at least a point,’’ said Leach.

“We’ve got a lot of guys playing a lot of different roles that they probably never played before. They’re playing a lot of minutes, which is great. We’re certainly not a finished product.’’

Here’s the good, bad and ugly.

GOOD

— After losing five home games in a row, the P-Bruins pulled out a win at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center on Friday.

— Scott Conway scored his first AHL goal on Friday, a nifty shorthanded tally to finish off a two on one.

— Jack Studnicka had a strong weekend and now has 6 points in the last 6 games. On Friday, he set up Conway’s goal while on the penalty kill in the first period, scored a power-play goal in the second period and then scored in the shootout. He had a power play goal on Saturday.

— Robert Lantosi scored a goal on Friday with a bomb from long range in the second period, then clinched the win with a shootout goal.

— Max Lagace stopped 35 shots, plus three more in the shootout, in Friday’s win. He is tied for third in the AHL with seven wins and his .934 save percentage is seventh in the league.

— Brendan Gaunce made a nice pass to Ryan Fitzgerald for the P-Bruins’ first goal in Hartford. Fitzgerald assisted on Providence’s second goal.

BAD

— Oskar Steen has gone 11 games without a goal.

— Kyle Keyser allowed goals on two of the first five shots in Hartford.

— After scoring twice in the first six minutes on Saturday, the P-Bruins allowed the Wolf Pack to tie the score before the game was 11 minutes old.

UGLY

— After Hartford pulled its goalie for an extra attacker late in Friday’s game, the P-Bruins gave up two goals in a minute as the Wolf Pack sent to game to OT.

— Injured: Chris Breen, Anton Blidh, Brendan Woods, Kyle Keyser, Dan Vladar

Good, bad & ugly from Providence Bruins weekend

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It was a bumpy weekend for the Providence Bruins.

They earned only two of a possible six points, finishing with a pair of home losses in which they scored a total of just one goal.

Things started on a positive note with a solid 4-1 road win over the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Saturday, but then went downhill at home with a 2-1 loss to the Hartford Wolf Pack on Sunday and a 2-0 loss to Bridgeport on Monday.

They’ve won just one of six games at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center.

Coach Jay Leach didn’t pull any punches after Monday’s loss.

“Worst game we’ve played all year, by far, from the drop of the puck. The most disappointing thing for me is they wanted it way more than we wanted it. If we were not aware of their desperation, we found out in the first three shifts of the game — and we didn’t respond,’’ he said.

“That’s where I’m disappointed. It was our first three in three (weekend) and we can go through all that stuff. I’d really rather not focus on any excuse. The facts are they wanted it more than we did and we’re going to have to learn from this and grow moving forward.

Here’s the good, bad and ugly.

GOOD

— Brendan Gaunce scored a goal and added an assist in Bridgeport in his first game back from injury.

— The P-Bruins made a nifty three-way passing play for their first goal on Saturday night — Brendan Woods to Scott Conway to Joona Koppanen. Conway’s feed, in particular, was pretty.

— In his last three appearances, Max Lagace has stopped 98 of 101 shots for a .970 save percentage. Only two AHL goalies have more than his 6 wins.

— With 12 points in 15 games, Alex Petrovic leads all AHL defensemen in scoring.

— Providence has killed 36 penalties in a row. The PK, which was 31st in the league on Oct. 20, is now 10th at 86.5 percent.

— With 4-6-10 in 16 games, Jack Studnicka is fifth in the league in rookie scoring.

— With 6 goals on 23 shots, Peter Ceharik is scoring on 26.1 percent of his shots. Last season his shooting percentage was 10.5.

BAD

— Monday’s 2-0 loss to Bridgeport was the first time the P-Bruins have been blanked at home since Harri Sateri kicked out 30 shots in a 2-0 Springfield win on March 4, 2018.

— Providence has been shorthanded a league-high 74 times.

— Trent Frederic served an automatic one-game suspension after he instigated a fight with Bridgeport’s Kyle Burroughs in the last five minutes of Saturday’s game.

— The P-Bruins were outshot, 21-8, in the second period in Bridgeport.

UGLY

— With losses on Sunday and Monday, the P-Bruins are 1-4-0-1 at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center. That’s the worst home record in the league.

— Injured: Anton Blidh, Dan Vladar, Brendan Woods, Jakub Lauko.

Good, bad & ugly from Providence Bruins week

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The Providence Bruins will gladly take four out of six points on the road any time they can against three of the better teams in the Eastern Conference.

The P-Bruins went into Rochester on Wednesday night and beat the Americans, 4-3. On Friday, they handed the Utica Comets their first loss of the season, 2-0. Providence’s only loss of the week was in Hershey, a game in which they came from behind twice to tie it before the Bears prevailed, 5-3.

“We were tied at three going into the third period and it was right there for us,’’ said coach Jay Leach. “We did not step up our game, so it was a disappointing loss and one we’ll have to learn from.’’

Here’s the good, bad and ugly.

GOOD

— Max Lagace made 34 saves in shutting out Utica. One of them was a desperation glove stop while he was sprawled on the ice midway through the second period. He leads the AHL with three shutouts.

— Zach Senyshyn had strong games in Rochester and Utica. He scored against the Amerks on a beautiful setup by Cameron Hughes. In Utica, he beat a defender with a curl and drag and then roofed the puck for his third goal of the season.

— The P-Bruins went three for six on the power play against Rochester. They killed all 15 penalties during the three games.

— Cameron Hughes continued his fine two-way play. He had an assist in all three games.

— The line of Ryan Fitzgerald, Trent Frederic and Oskar Steen had an epic possession shift during the second period against Utica. They held onto the puck in the Comets’ end of the ice for one minute straight without giving it up.

— Paul Carey scored a pretty goal in Rochester that gave the P-Bruins some breathing room late in the game. He scored a goal in Hershey after an excellent pass from Jack Studnicka.

— Cameron Hughes and Jakub Zboril combined on a beautiful passing play that ended with Brendan Woods firing the puck into a nearly empty net for a goal in Hershey. Zboril had a strong game that night, notching his first goal of the season to go along with his assist.

— Joona Koppanen made a good play to score a wraparound goal against the Amerks.

— Peter Cehlarik had two assists in Rochester before being recalled again by Boston.

— Stick tap for Josiah Didier, who went to the defense of Pavel Shen after the rookie was kneed by Hershey’s Eric Burgdoerfer.

BAD

— Ahead by three goals in Rochester, the P-Bruins gave up two goals in 19 seconds in the first minute of the third period.

— You may not put any stock in plus-minus as an accurate indicator of effective play, but the numbers in Hershey weren’t pretty by any measure. Alex Petrovic, Trent Frederic and Ryan Fitzgerald were minus-three. Urho Vaakanainen, Oscar Steen and Cooper Zech were minus-two.

— In Hershey, the P-Bruins gave up two goals in 17 seconds in the first four minutes of the third period. They turned out to be the difference in the game.

— After giving up a shorthanded goal in Hershey, Providence is tied with five other teams in allowing a league-high three SH scores.

— The puck’s not going in for Trent Frederic. He has no goals through 13 games this season. Going back to last season, he has three goals in his last 24 games, and he scored all of them in one game.

— Providence was outshot, 14-2, in the first 11 minutes in Hershey.

— Ryan Fitzgerald sat out the third period as a precaution on Saturday after he was accidently clotheslined by linesman Bob Goodman.

UGLY

— Injured: Brendan Gaunce, Dan Vladar, Anton Blidh

Good, bad & ugly from Providence Bruins week

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The results were mixed for the Providence Bruins last week as they won a road game, lost in a shootout at home, then dropped a one-goal decision in regulation time at home. They ended up with three of a possible six points.

The P-Bruins started the week strong, turning in their most complete performance of the season in a 4-0 win in Bridgeport on Tuesday.

“Probably our best game to date,’’ coach Jay Leach said. “I thought our start was terrific. We were on our toes, we got pucks behind them and got in on the forecheck.’’

On Saturday, Providence earned a point when they lost to Laval, 3-2, in a shootout. They lost to Belleville, 4-3, on Sunday.

“We were certainly in the games, but I’m not going to sit here and say we deserved to win both of them, either. We have our work cut out for us in cutting down some mistakes and chances against,’’ Leach said after Sunday’s loss.

“We’ve lost a couple of bodies and we’re going through that phase right now where we’re playing some younger players that haven’t really experienced tight games like this. It’s a learning process.’’

Here’s the good, bad and ugly.

GOOD

— Peter Cehlarik continued to put up points. He scored goals against Bridgeport and Laval, giving him six goals in six games and earning a callup to Boston on Sunday.

— Kyle Keyser played very well in Saturday’s shootout loss to Laval, making some big stops late in regulation time and in overtime. He came on in relief of Max Lagace on Sunday and stopped 20 of 21 shots.

— Paul Carey scored goals on Saturday and Sunday.

— Alex Petrovic tossed some big-league sauce to Carey for a five-on-three goal against Belleville. Petrovic has 1-7-8 in 10 games.

— Lagace stopped all 30 shots in Bridgeport. He’s the only goalie in the league with two shutouts.

— Ryan Fitzgerald scored twice in three games. Chris Breen made a nice play to put the puck on Fitzgerald’s stick at the edge of the crease for a score on Sunday.

— Zach Senyshyn played his best game of the season on Sunday. He made a good play off the wall in the first period, feeding Jakub Lauko for a goal. It was Senyshyn’s first point of the season.

“He was outstanding. Right from the get-go he was skating, won puck battles, created in the offensive zone. On the PP he was recovering pucks for us. Hey, if he can play like that it’s a great thing for us and a terrific thing for him,’’ Leach said.

— Robert Lantosi had a goal and an assist in Bridgeport.

— The penalty kill was better, allowing one goal in 14 shorthanded situations.

BAD

— I enjoy a good fight as much as anyone – maybe more – but Sunday’s bout between Trent Frederic and Belleville’s Joe LaBate, as crowd-pleasing as it was, should have been broken up by the linesmen before Frederic buckled LaBate with a big right hand. And once that damage was done, an official should have been at the side of the woozy and helmet-less LaBate in case he fell after he got back to his feet. Why LaBate was sent to the penalty box instead of to the dressing room to be checked out is a mystery.

— Lagace didn’t have a whole lot of help, but he allowed three goals on the first six shots in the first period on Sunday before Keyser took over.

— The P-Bruins have been shorthanded 44 times in 10 games. Only Springfield (45) has been on the PK more often.

— Providence has a difficult road stretch coming up. The next four games are at Rochester, Utica, Hershey and Bridgeport.

UGLY

— Injured: Brendan Gaunce, Anton Blidh, Dan Vladar.

Five quick hits from PC’s weekend

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There are going to be weekends like this when you have a team with a dozen new players.

One night you’re up, as Providence College was on Friday after a 6-2 win at Boston College, where the Friars have had all kinds of trouble through the years.

Then the next night you play well at times but lose in the end. That was the case in Saturday’s 3-2 overtime defeat at home to UMass Lowell.

“You’ve got to get more than two points in a weekend if you want to be a good team in this league,’’ said coach Nate Leaman.

Five quicks hits from the weekend:

FRIARS FADE

— PC was the better team in the first 40 minutes on Saturday, but Lowell pushed back hard with 19 shots in the third period and went home with a well-earned OT win.

“An emotional game the night before and then killing all those penalties, we definitely ran out of gas,’’ said Leaman.

“We took some dumb penalties. Then in the third period we did a really poor job of exiting our zone. We kept flipping it to them, and we were doing that (Friday) night, too. That’s a lot of youth there.’’

LACKEY’S STRONG

Michael Lackey is off to a fine start for the Friars with a .941 save percentage, a 1.63 goals-against average and two shutouts.

“I thought he had a great third period (on Saturday), held the fort when they made a good push. He’s arguably our best player this weekend,’’ said Leaman.

WHAT BROWN CAN DO

— In Matt Brown, Lowell has a freshman with a scorer’s touch. He had a goal, an assist and seven shots on Saturday.

His goal was a bomb from the faceoff dot, then he made the game-winner happen by firing a shot from the wing, low and on Lackey’s pads, that left the PC goalie with little choice but to boot the puck onto the stick of Carl Berglund, who put it in the net.

Brown isn’t big and his skating could be better, but it looks like he has the potential to be a point producer in Hockey East.

McDONALD COMES THROUGH

— Quietly, freshman defenseman Cam McDonald has been good for the Friars in the early going.

He’s not physically imposing at 5-foot-9, 170 pounds, but he moves the puck with confidence and he gets his shot through. His blast from the point beat BC’s Spencer Knight for what turned out to be the game-winner on Friday night.

“He’s a ballplayer, he’s an Alaska kid. The thing I’m really pleased with is that he just keeps getting better, keeps growing,’’ Leaman said.

UP AND DOWN

— PC blew out Maine in the opener, then stumbled in an OT loss to Holy Cross. They bounced back with a sweep at St. Lawrence and Clarkson and a good win at BC, followed by the loss to Lowell.

“I guess that’s part of being a young team. We’re just going to keep taking two steps forward, one step back,’’ Leaman said.

“(Lowell’s) first two goals were hellacious turnovers by us. Their second goal, we just get done killing a penalty and (the PC players) have been in the zone for a minute and ten seconds and a guy (Patrick Moynihan) coming out of the box gets the puck and he’s got to get it deep so we can get a change. He tries to go one on one, we turn it over and they made us pay.

“Hopefully we can learn from that stuff and grow from that stuff, but it’s certainly frustrating.’’

Good, bad & ugly from Providence Bruins week

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The Providence Bruins earned three out of six points during their three-game road trip to Laval and Belleville.

They started the trip by falling behind by four goals in the first period on Wednesday in Laval. They came all the way back to tie the game with 18 seconds left before losing in the shootout, 5-4. On Friday, they trailed, 2-0, in the first period against the Rocket, came back to tie the game, then gave up a goal midway through the third period and lost, 3-2. On Saturday, Providence jumped out to a two-goal lead, allowed Belleville to tie it, then scored four straight on the way to a 7-4 victory.

“We started well and responded to (Friday night’s) poor play,’’ coach Jay Leach said after Saturday’s win. “We got pucks behind them, got in on the foreheck and got bodies to the net. That really kind of fueled our game from the start.’’

The P-Bruins ended the weekend tied for second place in the Atlantic Division, two points behind Hartford. Only five teams in the AHL have more points than Providence.

Here’s the good, bad and ugly from the week’s games.

GOOD

— The P-Bruins mounted a tremendous comeback from four goals down in the first game in Laval. Peter Cehlarik, who had his face mashed into the boards in the first period, put on a cage and came back to score twice. Paul Carey and Brendan Gaunce had 1-1-2.

— Stick tap for Chris Breen for fighting Michael McCarron, who boarded Cehlarik.

— Providence outshot Laval, 19-8, in the second period on Wednesday.

— Anders Bjork continued his strong play. He leads Providence in scoring with 3-5-8 in 7 games.

— Kyle Keyser earned his first win as a pro in Belleville.

— After going pointless in his first five games, Trent Frederic assisted on two goals in each of the last two games.

— Ryan Fitzgerald and Alex Petrovic had a goal and an assist each on Friday.

— Wiley Sherman contributed two assists in his first game of the season against the Sens.

— Jack Studnicka, Cameron Hughes and Robert Lantosi scored their first goals of the season in Belleville.

BAD

— Providence started very slowly in both games in Laval. They gave up four goals in 5:53 in the first period on Wednesday, then they fell behind by two goals in the first period on Friday.

— A bad call by referee Dan Kelly in Belleville wiped out a spectacular passing play off the rush between Jakub Zboril, Trent Frederic and Jakub Lauko that ended with Lauko firing the puck into the net for what should have been a goal. But Kelly washed out the goal and sent Lauko to the box for slashing, apparently believing that Lauko broke the stick of Sens defenseman Hubert Labrie. What actually happened was that Labrie snapped his own stick when he slashed Lauko’s stick.

— All six Providence shooters failed to score in the shootout in Laval.

— The P-Bruins drove some 470 miles through the night to get home from Belleville at 7:15 a.m. on Sunday.

UGLY

— The unpenalized hit on Friday by Laval’s Michael McCarron that knocked out Brendan Gaunce was scary. It’s mind-boggling that referees Jim Curtin and Cory Syvret didn’t hand McCarron a five-minute major for interference and a game misconduct. It will be just as mind-boggling if the AHL doesn’t suspend McCarron for multiple games.

— The penalty kill is struggling in a big way. Providence allowed Belleville to convert four out of five opportunities on Saturday. That continued a slump that has seen the PK give up nine goals in the last 18 kills. The PK is last in the league at 70 percent.

— Injured: Brendan Gaunce, Zach Senyshyn, Dan Vladar, Anton Blidh.