Sound Tigers Host Rochester in Home Opener
BRIDGEPORT, Conn. - The Bridgeport Sound Tigers (1-1-0-0), proud AHL affiliate of the New York Islanders, return to Webster Bank Arena this weekend to open the home portion of their 2018-19 campaign. The Sound Tigers will host the Rochester Americans in a Saturday-Sunday doubleheader, including the team's home opener tomorrow at 1 p.m. Last time out, Chris Bourque and Steve Bernier both scored on the power play in a 2-1 win against the Hershey Bears on Sunday. Jeremy Smith also made 20 saves on 21 shots in his Sound Tigers debut to backstop the team to its first win of the season.
The Sound Tigers celebrate their first two home games of the season this weekend with several big-time promotions at Webster Bank Arena. On Saturday, the first 2,500 kids (14 years of age or younger) will receive a free backpack at the door, courtesy of All Electric Construction and Communication. Added family fun will be provided in the Kids Zone on the outdoor plaza, presented by Big Y, which includes inflatables and food and beverage specials. In addition, all students who participate in the CHET summer reading program will receive a FREE ticket to the game. Click here for details.
On Sunday, the Sound Tigers will host their first-ever Car Cruise and Elvis Tribute Day for their 3 p.m. game against Rochester. Beginning at noon, the plaza will come to life with a magnificent showcase of automobiles, featuring hot rods from the past and present. In addition, Elvis Tribute Artist Jeff Krick will rock the plaza with a must-see concert at 1:30 p.m., highlighted by food and beverage specials during pre-game party. "Elvis" will also perform during the second intermission and the first 1,000 fans in attendance will receive a pair of Elvis sunglasses at the door. Tickets for both games can be purchased via Ticketmaster.com or the Webster Bank Arena Click It or Ticket Box Office.
TIGERS VS. AMERKS
Saturday's matchup will mark the first of four meetings between the Sound Tigers and Americans this season, and the first of two meetings at Webster Bank Arena (both this weekend). Bridgeport went 2-1-1-0 against Rochester last season, including an improbable come-from-behind win in their last meeting on Mar. 15. The Sound Tigers were down 4-0 early in the second period, but rallied back for a 5-4 victory thanks to Travis St. Denis' first professional hat trick and five-point night (three goals, two assists). He became just the fifth Sound Tiger to ever record five points in a single game.
LEADING THE WAY EARLY
Michael Dal Colle has earned back-to-back multi-point games to begin the 2018-19 season and currently leads the Sound Tigers in points (four) and assists (three). The Islanders' fifth-overall pick in 2014 had recorded back-to-back multi-point games only once prior, but had a strong rookie season in 2016-17, finishing fifth on the team in scoring with 41 points (15 goals, 26 assists) in 75 games.
A NIGHT TO REMEMBER
Kieffer Bellows made his highly-anticipated professional debut Saturday night in Allentown, Penn. and it took him less than two periods to score his first goal. The Islanders' 19th overall pick in 2016 deflected Chris Bourque's centering feed while on the power play, which snuck past goaltender Carter Hart late in the middle frame. Bellows, the son of former Stanley Cup Champion Brian Bellows, also scored two power-play goals during NHL preseason play this year which co-led all first-year players.
INCHING CLOSER TO HISTORY
Six-time AHL All-Star Chris Bourque played parts of nine seasons with the Hershey Bears, but on Sunday, he returned to Giant Center on the opposite bench and scored his first goal with the Sound Tigers. It was his 237th career AHL goal (which ties him with Paul Gladu for 50th all-time) and his 694th career point (24th all-time). Bourque, a two-time AHL scoring champion and former MVP, is currently the League's active leading scorer.
The Sound Tigers are 4-for-11 (36.4%) on the power play to begin the season and were one of only four teams with four goals on the man advantage last weekend. Michael Dal Colle leads the way with three power-play points (one goal, two assists) after recording just seven total a year ago. On the flip side of special teams, Bridgeport's penalty kill has also been superb, beginning the season 8-for-8.
Kieffer Bellows was the only Sound Tiger to make his professional debut last weekend... Otto Koivula made his North American debut last Saturday night... Ben Holmstrom sat out Saturday's game as a healthy scratch, ending his streak of 228 consecutive games played, which was the AHL's longest active streak... It was the first time Holmstrom has missed a game with Bridgeport... The Sound Tigers roster includes 4,470 games of AHL experience and 883 games of NHL experience.
Packed Promotional Lineup: The Sound Tigers will boast one of their most extensive and wide-ranging promotional schedules ever for the 2018-19 season. The fan-friendly calendar includes the return of popular themes like Hockey and Hops (Nov. 23 and Mar. 17), Military Appreciation (Jan. 12), Star Wars Night (Jan. 19) and Princess Night (Mar. 30). Regional hockey fans will be elated for the addition of Hockey Weekend in Connecticut (Feb. 23-24), while other new headliners include Holiday Gift Weekend (Dec. 15-16) and a revamped Teddy Bear Toss (Nov. 23). View the full 2017-18 promotional schedule.
For additional details or to reserve a group outing for any giveaway or theme night, please call the Sound Tigers' front office at (203) 345-2300 ext 7.
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