The Providence Bruins had a good weekend, taking five out of six points against quality opponents. They beat division-leading Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, 4-0, at home on Friday, defeated Bridgeport, 3-1, on the road on Saturday, and lost in a shootout to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, 3-2, back home on Sunday.
“With our schedule and our opponents, we did a really nice job this weekend, did a lot of good things,’’ coach Jay Leach said.
“Our first period (on Sunday) was our best period of the weekend. In the second period we stopped managing pucks — is that fatigue? In the third period we were able to manage that. I was really proud of the group because they really buckled down. There were a lot of excuses with the travel and the schedule, and we really dug in. For me, the weekend was a stepping stone for us and some of our younger players. It was encouraging.’’
Here’s the good, bad and ugly.
*** With two goals and two fights, Adam Payerl had his best weekend of the season. He brought a lot of grit and compete to the lineup. Kudos to Payerl for fighting Mike Cornell on Saturday after the Bridgeport defenseman’s hit on Peter Cehlarik.
*** The P-Bruins kept their foot on the accelerator all night on Friday, piling up 43 shots, including 22 in the first period.
*** Jordan Szwarz had four assists during the three weekend games. He has 1-10-11 in his last nine games. For my money, he’s the best 200-foot center in the AHL’s Eastern Conference.
*** With a goal and four shots on net, Zach Senyshyn had a strong game on Saturday after missing four games with an upper body injury. The goal snapped a 15-game dry spell.
*** Matt Beleskey deserves credit. He could have sat back and collected his money last month when he was hit by a puck and broken his orbital bone, but he missed only a handful of games. On Sunday, he could have taken the rest of the afternoon off after again getting hit in the face. Instead, he put the full shield back on and returned to the game.
*** Thanks to three goals in seven minutes early in the game on Saturday, the P-Bruins forced the Sound Tigers to chase the game all night.
*** Colton Hargrove had goals on Friday and Saturday. He fought Bridgeport’s Seth Helgeson after a late hit on Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson.
*** Tommy Cross had goals on Friday and Sunday.
*** Zane McIntyre posted his second straight shutout against the Penguins on Friday.
*** Jeremy Lauzon and Ryan Fitzgerald had six shots each on Friday.
*** Jordan Binnington was good in Bridgeport, stopping 36 shots.
*** Providence scored four power play goals over the weekend.
*** JFK makes plays even if he’s not shooting the puck. Still, you’d like to see him shoot more. He had no shots on both Saturday and Sunday.
*** Bridgeport on Saturday and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Sunday both had the night off before playing Providence, which played three games in three nights.
*** The P-Bruins had only 16 shots on Saturday.
*** Lauzon got caught out of position on the second goal by Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Sunday.
*** There were two dangerous hits in the Bridgeport game. Kyle Burroughs boarded Chris Porter and knocked him out of the game and Steve Bernier boarded Emil Johansson. Both were called for minor penalties, but could have been more.
*** Injured: Chris Breen (lower body), Porter (upper body).