KYLE MAKES HIS HOME DEBUT
Friday, 01.11.2008 / 7:20 PM ET / News
By Jason Lockhart - Website/Publications Coordinator
Islanders 2006 first round draft pick Kyle Okposo set to play at the Arena at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport, tonight at 7 pm
Kyle Okposo makes his home debut with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, the Islanders' AHL affiliate, tonight at 7 pm at the Arena at Harbor Yard versus the Springfield Falcons.
Fresh off of his pro hockey debut in Binghamton, where he set-up two Sound Tigers power play goals, Okposo hopes to re-ignite a Bridgeport team that ranks sixth in the East Division.
Okposo is expected to stay with his linemates from his first game - Sound Tigers leading scorer Jeff Tambellini and Bridgeport's leading assist man Frans Nielsen.
Islanders fan favorites Steve Webb and Eric Cairns will sit in with Sound Tigers play-by-play man Phil Giubileo on Saturday night for Okposo’s home debut.
The game can be heard live on ESPN 1300 AM, and at www.soundtigers.com, and seen in its entirety on Monday on Islanders TV, along with Kyle’s pro debut from Friday night in Binghamton.
Also check Islanders TV and Sound Tigers TV for exclusive highlights and analysis of Kyle’s debut weekend as a pro.
A HANDY GUIDE TO VISITING BRIDGEPORT
Get to the Game
To purchase tickets to Okposo's first two games with Bridgeport, please call the Arena at Harbor Yard box office at 203-334-2400 or visit Ticketmaster.com.
For those planning on taking the Port Jefferson Ferry to the Bridgeport games this weekend, click here for a special discount.
Word out of Bridgeport is that the last boat's departure from Bridgeport back to Port Jefferson on Saturday has been pushed back to 9:45 to accommodate those attending the Sound Tigers game.
Dining Near Arena at Harbor Yard
Looking to grab some food before or after the game, these places come highly recommended by the Sound Tigers players and management.
To watch the games live online, visit B2TV.com for pay per view options.
Check back to Islanders TV on Monday for the complete games from Friday and Saturday, as well as exclusive interviews with Kyle and analysis from Sound Tigers announcers throughout the weekend.
Senators knock off Sound Tigers; Kyle Okposo records two assists in his pro hockey debut
Binghamton's Greg Mauldin spoiled Okposo's debut by scoring two goals, including the game-winner with 4:39 to play in the third period. While at even strength, Okposo played with Bridgeport point leader Jeff Tambellini and Frans Nielsen (NYI - 2002 third round pick).
"We were all very happy with Kyle's play in his first game," said Bridgeport head coach Jack Capuano. "He was very relaxed and exceptionally poised with the puck. He played very well in all three zones. Kyle is a player who likes to think ahead and contains good hockey sense. He might have been a little nervous, but after the game he told me he liked the pace of the game, despite playing against guys who were bigger and stronger than he's used to."
The Senators' goaltender Jeff Glass earned the win by making 33 saves, while Mike Morrison picked up the loss, stopping 29 shots.
A fight-filled first period between the Sound Tigers and Senators ended in a scoreless tie. Midway through the first period, in a span of 12 seconds, three fights broke out. First, Bridgeport defenseman Drew Fata dropped the gloves with Mauldin, then Sound Tigers forward Kip Brennan went toe-to-toe with Jeremy Yablonski and finally Bridgeport defenseman Micheal Haley went at it with Greg Amadio.
Just 11 seconds into the second period, Okposo earned his first pro assist on the Bridgeport Sound Tigers' second power play. Holding the puck on the right wall, Okposo sent a pass back to the point. Dustin Kohn (NYI - 2005 second round pick) walked in and ripped a slap pass to Walter (acquired from Boston), who redirected the puck past goaltender Jeff Glass.
Binghamton tied the game at one on the power play, when Ilya Zubov beat Morrison with a shot from the slot.
Mauldin scored 59 seconds into the third period to give Binghamton a 2-1 lead.
But Bridgeport struck back on the power play with 8:29 remaining in the third period. Okposo curled out of the circle and slid a quick pass in front to Walter, who maneuvered near the crease before lifting a shot over the fallen Glass.
Binghamton regained the lead just a few minutes later on Mauldin's second of the game.
Check out Michael Fornabaio's game story in the Connecticut Post.
Five Players of the Game:
1. Greg Mauldin: Spoiled Kyle's debut with two goals, including the game-winner, a fight
2. Ben Walter: Two goals on strong plays in-close
3. Kyle Okposo: A very good first game, playing set-up man with two assists, on the ice for the final minute with Bridgeport down a goal
4. Jeff Glass: Held off the Sound Tigers with 33 saves
5. Ilya Zubov: A nice individual effort for his tenth goal of the season
33 Mike Morrison
35 Joey MacDonald
6 Matthew Spiller - 44 Drew Fata
4 Mark Wotton - 40 Jamie Fraser
50 Dustin Kohn - 19 Scott Ford
7 Jeff Tambellini - 51 Frans Nielsen - 12 Kyle Okposo
9 Ben Walter - 10 Sean Bentivoglio - 27 Matt Keith
Jeremy Colliton - 23 Trevor Smith - 17 Jason Pitton
18 Micheal Haley - 37 Kip Brennan - 91 Pierre-Luc Faubert