P-Bruins Drop First Meeting with Belleville 3-2
Belleville, ON - The Providence Bruins fell to the Belleville Senators Saturday night 3-2 in their first matchup of the season with the club. The P-Bruins got goals from Zach Senyshyn and Connor Clifton while Dan Vladar made his 11th start of the season in net.
Despite a 9-6 shots advantage and a pair of power plays for Providence, Belleville grabbed the game's first goal with 5:25 left in the opening period. Chase Balisy took a hit to get the puck in the right corner to Gabriel Gagne, who fought for possession in traffic. He centered the puck to Joseph LaBate in the right slot, and fired a shot over the blocker of Vladar for his second goal of the season. The P-Bruins continued to apply pressure throughout the period, but the Senators took a 1-0 lead into the locker room.
Providence continued to pepper Senators goalie Filip Gustavsson with shots, firing 13 on him in the first eight minutes of the period, but he stopped several quality Bruin chances. Belleville capitalized on their first power play of the night at 12:02, scoring to take a 2-0 lead. Off the face-off, Paul Carey fed Rudolfs Balcers inside the left circle with no one around him. Working with an open net, he blasted a one-timer that Vladar had no chance to stop for his 10th goal of the season. Providence finally cracked the scoreboard at 14:51, taking advantage of a power play of their own. After winning the face-off, Cameron Hughes and Senyshyn started a 2-on-1 break. Hughes sent a perfect centering feed to Senyshyn, who buried his ninth goal of the season to make it a 2-1 game.
Just as fast as the P-Bruins took the momentum, the Senators took it right back at 17:36. Jack Rodewald fired a slapper off the endboards, and the rebound went right out to Filip Chlapik open on the goalline. He snuck his seventh goal of the season by Vladar and Belleville led 3-1 after two periods. The third saw Providence continue to challenge Gustavsson with shots and dictate the pace of play, but the Senators goaltender proved to be too much for most of the period. Clifton made it a one-goal game with 2:34 left, scoring his first goal of the season. Kyle Cumiskey kept the puck in the zone to Karson Kuhlman, who fought along the boards for it and centered to Ryan Fitzgerald. He tapped it to Clifton in the high slot, who dragged and snapped a shot over the glove to make it 3-2. That was as close as the Bruins would make it, as the Senators survived with a 3-2 win.
Vladar stopped 20 of 23 shots while Gustavsson stopped 35 of 37. Providence was 1-3 on the power play and 1-2 on the penalty kill. The P-Bruins conclude their four-game road trip Wednesday night in Utica when they take on the Comets for the first time this season at 7pm.
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