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, 04.4.2012 / 3:53 PM ET / 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 x - NYR 74 47 20 7 226 172 101
2 MTL 75 46 21 8 197 167 100
3 TBL 76 46 23 7 244 198 99
4 PIT 75 41 23 11 207 188 93
5 NYI 76 44 27 5 230 211 93
6 DET 74 40 22 12 216 201 92
7 WSH 75 40 25 10 218 186 90
8 BOS 75 37 25 13 199 195 87
9 OTT 73 37 25 11 213 195 85
10 FLA 74 34 26 14 184 202 82
11 PHI 76 30 29 17 198 219 77
12 CBJ 74 35 35 4 203 230 74
13 NJD 74 31 31 12 166 189 74
14 CAR 73 27 36 10 170 201 64
15 TOR 75 27 42 6 194 241 60
16 BUF 74 20 46 8 141 249 48

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 76 34 40 -3 74
R. Strome 75 15 32 19 47
K. Okposo 54 15 31 -10 46
F. Nielsen 75 13 28 9 41
B. Nelson 76 18 22 9 40
A. Lee 70 23 16 12 39
J. Bailey 64 15 23 4 38
J. Boychuk 66 8 25 9 33
T. Hamonic 66 5 25 16 30
N. Leddy 72 10 19 15 29
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 35 16 2 .915 2.39
C. Johnson 8 8 1 .889 3.08

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