Oskar Steen celebrates his first-period goal with teammates on Sunday afternoon. (Photo courtesy of Providence Bruins)
The Providence Bruins won one and lost one in their two weekend games.
Trailing 2-1 in the third period at Bridgeport on Saturday night, the P-Bruins scored twice in 53 seconds and earned a 3-2 win against the Islanders.
Things didn’t go nearly as well back home on Sunday afternoon. Providence fell behind early, took the lead on two goals in less than three minutes and then gave up the next four goals on the way to a 5-2 loss to Bridgeport. It was their first defeat of the year by more than two goals.
“We’ve been winning games but our details haven’t been good. That’s what you get when you play as loose as we did. We know Bridgeport. We know they’re going to come in and play the brand of hockey that they play and we fell right into it. It’s just disappointing,” said coach Ryan Mougenel after Sunday’s game.
“If you’re going to be like that, your toughness has to be your power play and our power play let us down. It actually, I think, hurt us. It hurt our momentum. Special teams, we’ve got to make sure we’re dialed in here this week. That’s what it’s going to be, getting back on track.
“Those games are going to happen. There’s young players that make young mistakes and some of our older guys weren’t there to pick it up.”
Here’s the good, bad and ugly.
— The Hershey Bears slipped ahead of Providence and took the lead in the Atlantic Division and overall in the AHL, but Providence remains in good position in second with 35 points and a .729 points percentage.
— After stopping 28 of 30 shots in Saturday’s 3-2 win, Brandon Bussi is tied for the AHL lead with a save percentage of .932.
— Fabian Lysell returned to the lineup after missing three games because he was sick and scored twice in Bridgeport. Snipes and toe-drags are great, but going to the front of the net and converting good opportunities, as he did on Saturday, is important, too, and should result in a lot of goals for the flashy rookie.
— Oskar Steen knew what to do when a Bridgeport defender handed him the puck in the slot on Sunday: He buried it for his fifth goal of the season.
— Providence caught a break when veteran goalie Cory Schneider turned the puck over to Vinni Lettieri in the first period on Sunday. Lettieri dished to Georgii Merkulov, who slid the puck into the open net. Somehow Fabian Lysell also was credited with an assist on the play.
— Vinni Lettieri has points in five straight games. His assist on Georgii Merkulov’s goal on Sunday was his 100th in the AHL.
— Georgii Merkulov made a very nice pass to Fabian Lysell for the game-winner on Saturday.
— Connor Carrick had a goal and an assist in Saturday’s win.
— Providence had a golden opportunity to get back in the game on the power play on Sunday when Bridgeport was hit with a five-minute penalty and then a two-minute penalty in the last minute of the second period. They not only didn’t score, they failed to generate any Grade A chances. Providence has fallen to 30th in the AHL on the power play at 14.4 percent. Only Hartford (14.3 percent) and Chicago (12 percent) are worse.
— Tough break for Keith Kinkaid and the P-Bruins on Sunday when a Bridgeport shot bounced off the glass behind the net and right to Otto Koivula for an easy tap-in goal.
— Going into Sunday’s games, Providence was allowing an average of 34.13 shots per game, the most in the league.
— The P-Bruins fell behind just over five minutes after the opening faceoff on both Saturday and Sunday.
— Injured: Kyle Keyser, Eduards Tralmaks, Matt Filipe
The P-Bruins thought they had a goal at the end of the second period, but the puck didn’t cross the line until time had run out. (Photo courtesy of Providence Bruins)