P-BRUINS OFFENSE DOMINATES BEARS ON MILITARY NIGHT
Providence, RI - The Providence Bruins defeated the Hershey Bears Friday 5-2 on their annual Military Appreciation night. The P-Bruins got goals from Ryan Fitzgerald, Jakub Zboril, Tommy Cross, Josh Hennessy and Austin Czarnik while Zane McIntyre made his 26th start of the season in net.
Providence struck quickly in the opening period, needing just 3:42 to take the lead while on the power play. Austin Czarnik fired a shot on Vitek Vanecek from the right dot that the Hershey goaltender initially stopped. However, the rebound found Fitzgerald in the right slot and he backhanded one through for his ninth goal of the season. The team exchanged power play opportunities the remainder of the period, but neither side would find the back of the net and the P-Bruins took a 1-0 lead into the intermission.
Zboril's first career goal 10:46 into the second doubled Providence's lead to 2-0. Flying in from the right point, Zboril took a feed from Szwarz along the half boards and sent a wrist-shot by Vanecek. Fitzgerald picked up his second point of the night on the play that put the P-Bruins up 2-0. The Bears finally cracked the scoreboard at 14:47, flying into the offensive zone on a power play to create their chance. After receiving the puck from Tyler Graovac, Wayne Simpson carried the puck in towards the right wing. He fed it back to Graovac, who capitalized on the centering pass for his seventh goal of the season as the P-Bruins entered the break up 2-1.
Cross needed just 28 seconds to put Providence back up by two, as he took a Czarnik feed and blasted a slap shot by everyone for his sixth goal of the season. That put the P-Bruins up 3-1, but just four minutes later Hennessy made it a 4-1 game. Fighting for Chris Breen's pass behind the net, Hennessy won the battle and quickly wrapped around the right side for his fifth goal of the season. Zach Sill cut the lead to 4-2 at 7:11, but Czarnik made it a three goal game again at 13:06. Taking a centering feed from Szwarz in the left wing corner, he sniped home his 10th goal of the season while on the power play. Fitzgerald picked up his career-best fourth point of the game as Providence won by a 5-2 final.
McIntyre stopped 27 of 29 shots while Vanecek stopped 23 of 28. Providence was 3-7 on the power play and 5-6 on the penalty kill. The P-Bruins have one more game before the All-Star break and it comes tomorrow night in Springfield at 7:05pm against the Thunderbirds.
The Providence Bruins are the American Hockey League affiliate of the NHL's Boston Bruins, playing their home games at the Dunkin' Donuts Center in Providence, RI. Spanning more than 25 years, the Boston/Providence affiliation is one of the longest and most successful player development partnerships in professional hockey history.
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