Szwarz Nets SO Goal, McKenna Shuts out Bruins
Portland, Me.- The Portland Pirates (19-15-1-0) won in dramatic fashion with a 1-0 shootout victory over the Providence Bruins (17-13-3-1) to take second place in the Atlantic Division. It was the fourth-straight win for the Pirates, and second shutout in four games for goalie Mike McKenna (14-12-1).
It was an evenly played first period for Portland and Providence, with the Pirates walking away from the first frame with a 7-5 advantage on shots on goal. There was a moment of suspense when McKenna stopped a short-handed breakaway by the Bruins' Spencer Asuchak in the closing seconds of the period.
The Bruins controlled the play in the second period, outshooting the Pirates 13-5. Despite Providence's increased tempo, they were unable to convert, with the game remaining scoreless through two.
The Pirates had a 5-on-3 advantage 5 minutes into the third period, but were unable to get any goals past Bruin goalie Jeremy Smith (10-5-3). The period came to a close, and the teams headed to a 7-minute overtime period.
Providence and Portland traded chances during overtime, but McKenna and Smith both kept up a strong front, stopping every puck that came their way. When the horn sounded calling an end to overtime, the two teams went to a shootout.
Alex Bolduc, who played in his 500th career professional hockey game tonight, was up first in the shootout but rang his shot off the post. Rob Flick got the first scoring chance for the Bruins, shooting a puck directly off the left-hand post next to McKenna. Jordan Szwarz was up next for the Pirates, scoring the game winner right past the glove of Smith. Anthony Camara got the next opportunity for Providence, but McKenna blocked his shot. Justin Hodgman took the last round for the Pirates, ultimately getting blocked by Smith. McKenna held through the last Bruins' skater, blocking David Warsofsky's rallying shot.
The Pirates are back in action at the Cross Insurance Arena on Wednesday night when they host the Binghamton Senators at 7 p.m. They will also host the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Friday, January 9 at 7 p.m. Hockey Happy Hour is going on all January long, and fans will get a free $10 Dunkin' Donuts gift card (while supplies last) with the purchase of a 4-Pack when they call 207-PIRATES between 3 and 6 p.m.
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