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Sound Tigers clinch playoff berth with 3-2 win over Falcons

David Ullstrom nets game-winner as Sound Tigers win sixth straight game to clinch berth in Calder Cup Playoffs

Wednesday, 04.04.2012 / 3:53 PM / News
By Jamie Palatini
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Sound Tigers clinch playoff berth with 3-2 win over Falcons
David Ullstrom scored the game-winning goal with 4:45 left in regulation and Kevin Poulin made 33 saves to propel the Bridgeport Sound Tigers to a 3-2 win over the Springfield Falcons on Wednesday afternoon. With their sixth straight win, the Sound Tigers clinch a berth in the Calder Cup Playoffs and improve to 38-24-3-6 overall. Springfield falls to 33-33-3-3.

The Sound Tigers opened the scoring 2:36 into the game courtesy of an awkward bounce in the Springfield zone. Steve Oleksy rimmed the puck along the right boards, but as Springfield goaltender Manny Legace came out to play the puck, it shot out towards the slot. Tony Romano got his stick on the puck, and John Persson collected it and sent it into the open net for his third goal in eight games as a pro to put the Sound Tigers up 1-0.
David Ullstrom and Tim Spencer prepare for a faceoff during the Sound Tigers game against Springfield.

Romano put the Sound Tigers ahead by two with a power-play goal midway through the opening frame. Rhett Rakhshani held the puck above the left circle and sent a pass to Romano by the left post. Romano spun quickly and fired the puck past Legace for his 10th goal of the season and the Sound Tigers led 2-0. Bridgeport carried their two-goal lead into the second period, where Kevin Poulin stopped all 14 Springfield shots to preserve the Sound Tigers two-goal cushion.

However, a physical period culminated in a power play for Springfield to open the third period, when a scrum involving both sides as the horn sounded resulted in a Falcons man-advantage. Springfield scored on their power play chance a mere 21 seconds into the third period when Alex Giroux beat Poulin from the right circle and cut the Falcons deficit to one. Springfield evened the score at 6:04 as they forced a turnover in the Bridgeport zone and Wade MacLeod fired past Poulin to tie the score at two.

Ullstrom put the Sound Tigers ahead for good with 4:45 left in regulation. The second-year forward split the Springfield defense to create a brief 2-on-1 opportunity. Ullstrom sent a backhand pass through the crease that deflected off a Falcons skate and past Legace. It gave Ullstrom his team-leading 22nd goal of the season and the Sound Tigers re-took the lead 3-2.

The Falcons applied heavy pressure in the final minutes to try and even the score, but Poulin made key saves down the stretch to preserve the win for the Sound Tigers. Poulin improves to 23-17-4 and has been in net for each of the Sound Tigers past six wins.

The Sound Tigers now improve to 23-8-2-2 at home, including 17-2-0-2 in that span since Christmas. With the win, the Sound Tigers now hold a five-point lead over the Whale for the top spot in the Northeast Division with five games left in the regular season.

The Sound Tigers will look for their seventh straight win on Friday night when they host the Syracuse Crunch at 7:00 p.m. on Kids Free Day. All kids 12 and under will receive free admittance to Friday night’s game.

FORWARD LINES
Persson – Romano – Rakhshani
Ullstrom – Mouillierat – DiBenedetto
McNeely – Frischmon – Backman
Halmo – Marcinko – Riley

DEFENSIVE PAIRINGS
Katic – Oleksy
Landry – Ness
de Haan – Wishart

GOALTENDERS
Poulin
Clarke

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 TBL 50 31 15 4 163 132 66
2 MTL 47 31 13 3 127 108 65
3 NYI 48 32 15 1 157 135 65
4 DET 49 28 12 9 145 128 65
5 PIT 48 27 13 8 143 124 62
6 WSH 48 25 14 9 144 124 59
7 BOS 49 26 16 7 131 123 59
8 NYR 46 27 15 4 135 111 58
9 FLA 46 21 15 10 114 129 52
10 PHI 50 21 22 7 139 151 49
11 TOR 50 22 24 4 144 155 48
12 OTT 47 19 19 9 129 134 47
13 CBJ 47 21 23 3 119 148 45
14 NJD 48 18 22 8 109 135 44
15 CAR 47 17 25 5 102 122 39
16 BUF 49 14 32 3 92 174 31

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 48 23 25 -1 48
K. Okposo 46 14 30 -2 44
R. Strome 48 9 25 16 34
B. Nelson 48 15 15 5 30
F. Nielsen 48 9 17 4 26
J. Boychuk 38 4 21 16 25
J. Bailey 36 8 14 7 22
N. Leddy 48 7 14 14 21
N. Kulemin 48 11 9 0 20
A. Lee 42 13 5 6 18
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 26 10 0 .912 2.42
C. Johnson 6 5 0 .870 3.38

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