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 Providence Bruins

P-Bruins Defeat Thunderbirds, Clinch Bye in First Round of Calder Cup Playoffs

April 19, 2024 - American Hockey League (AHL)
Providence Bruins News Release

Providence, RI - Two third period goals helped the Providence Bruins defeat the Springfield Thunderbirds 4-2 on Friday night at the Amica Mutual Pavilion and clinch a bye in the first round of the Calder Cup Playoffs. Georgii Merkulov posted two goals and an assist in the victory, while Anthony Richard recorded three assists. Jayson Megna notched a goal and an assist as well.

How It Happened

Richard chased down a loose puck in the left corner, wrapped it around the far side of the net, and zipped a pass across the crease to Merkulov at the left post, where he redirected it into the back of the net, giving the P-Bruins a 1-0 lead 4:47 into the first period.

Anton Malmstrom's wrist shot from the point snuck under the goaltender's arm and into the back of the net, tying the game at 1-1 with 11:15 remaining in the first period.

With 46 seconds remaining in the first frame, Richard fired a pass from the left side boards to the far post, hitting Megna in stride for a backdoor tap-in goal to give Providence a 2-1 lead. Merkulov was credited with a secondary assist.

Zachary Bolduc dropped the puck for Ryan Suzuki in the slot, where he flipped a shot into the upper-left corner of the net, tying the game at 2-2 with 13:50 to play in the second frame.

With 2:48 remaining in the third period, Riley Duran found a rebound all alone at the left post and directed the puck into the back of the net, giving the P-Bruins a 3-2 lead. Patrick Brown and Oskar Steen received assists on the tally.

Merkulov scored on the empty net with 1:07 left in the third period. Richard and Megna were credited with the assists.


Richard's three assists were a season high.

Merkulov has four points in his last three games.

Brown extended his point four to three games.

Goaltender Brandon Bussi stopped 24 of the 26 he faced. The P-Bruins totaled 37 shots.

The Providence power play went 0-for-3, and the penalty kill was 2-for-2.

Up Next

The Providence Bruins travel to the Bridgeport Islanders on Saturday, April 20 at Total Mortgage Arena. Puck drop is set for 7:00 P.M.

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