Sound Tigers Return Home to Face Wolf Pack at 1 p.m.
BRIDGEPORT, Conn. - The Bridgeport Sound Tigers host the Hartford Wolf Pack at 1 p.m. today in their rescheduled contest that was initially slated for Mar. 6th. It was postponed due to roster constraints affecting the Wolf Pack, which pushed it to this afternoon at Webster Bank Arena. Today's game is the seventh of 12 meetings this season and the fourth of six matchups in Bridgeport. Hartford leads the series 4-1-1-0 and has won each of the last three games (points in four straight), but the Sound Tigers are 2-1-0-0 against the Wolf Pack at home.
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The Sound Tigers (3-11-1-0) will have just eight games left in their 2020-21 season following today's action. Five of those contests will be against Hartford (8-6-1-0) and the other three will be against the Providence Bruins (13-4-1-0). Providence currently leads the Atlantic Division with 27 points in 18 games, while Hartford is 10 points back with three games in hand. The Sound Tigers also have three games in hand but are 20 points behind the Bruins.
LAST TIME OUT
Bode Wilde scored his first pro goal and Tanner Fritz collected his second of the season last Wednesday, but the Sound Tigers allowed a season-high seven goals and suffered a 7-2 loss to the Wolf Pack at the XL Center. Tim Gettinger had a hat trick and four points (three goals, one assist) for Hartford, while the Pack also scored six times in the third period alone and notched at least three power-play goals (3-for-6) against Bridgeport for the second straight meeting. Hartford's power play now leads the AHL at 30.5% (18-for-59).
VIEW FROM HARTFORD
The Wolf Pack are on a five-game winning streak, their longest of the season and also the longest active win streak in the AHL. Head coach Kris Knoblauch's team defeated Providence on Saturday, scoring each of the game's first five goals en route to a 6-1 victory at home. Ty Ronning scored twice and is now tied for the team lead with eight goals on the season (with Morgan Barron), while Anthony Greco and Will Cuylle each had one goal and one assist. Barron and Darren Raddysh both added two helpers and Adam Huska made 22 saves in net to earn his fourth straight win. Hartford has outscored its opponents 13-3 in its last two games and 27-9 on its current winning streak, while also holding opponents to two goals or less in each of those games.
APPLEBY AGREES TO TERMS
The Islanders and goaltender Ken Appleby have agreed to terms on a two-year, two-way deal beginning this season. Appleby, 25, has played two games with the Sound Tigers this year, going 1-1-0 with a 2.50 goals-against-average and .896 save percentage, including a 20-save win in his Bridgeport debut on Mar. 18th against Hartford. The North Bay, Ont. native has played three NHL games with the New Jersey Devils and also has 78 career AHL appearances with the Sound Tigers, Albany Devils, Binghamton Devils and Manitoba Moose. In addition, Appleby has played 94 ECHL games with the Adirondack Thunder, Jacksonville Icemen and Florida Everblades.
Bode Wilde scored his first professional goal last Wednesday in Hartford, an unassisted even-strength tally at 12:11 of the third period. It was his third point (one goal, two assists) in 13 games this season and his fifth point (one goal, four assists) in 33 pro appearances, all with Bridgeport. He had 81 points (23 goals, 58 assists) in 73 career OHL games with the Saginaw Spirit over the last two seasons. Wilde was selected by the New York Islanders in the second round (#41 overall) of the 2018 NHL Draft.
FRITZ FINDS THE NET
Tanner Fritz registered his second goal of the season last Wednesday and his first since Feb. 25th. It was also his 45th career AHL goal since his debut in 2016 (all with Bridgeport), second-most among active Sound Tigers behind Cole Bardreau (49). Fritz has 134 points (45 goals, 89 assists) in 192 AHL games and is currently tied for 15th place on the team's all-time goals list.
DEALING WITH THE DEVILS
Today's game is Bridgeport's first since forwards Mason Jobst and A.J. Greer were traded to New Jersey in exchange for Kyle Palmieri and Travis Zajac last Wednesday night. The Isles also included a first-round pick in the 2021 NHL Draft and a conditional fourth-round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft in the deal. Jobst had 15 points (five goals, 10 assists) in 51 games with the Sound Tigers since his debut in 2019, while Greer recorded two points (one goal, one assist) in 10 games with Bridgeport. Palmieri and Zajac have played in each of the Islanders' last three games, including a 3-2 overtime win against the New York Rangers on Sunday in which Palmieri scored his first goal with the Isles.
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