By: Drew Casey (@drew421)
With the loss of their entire top line, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers were expected to struggle offensively. Unfortunately, that is exactly what they did this weekend. The team was not really affected on Friday night in Providence as they defeated the Bruins affiliate 4-2, but the team could not find the back of the net at Webster Bank Arena on Friday and Saturday.
Entering Saturday’s game, the team had won seven consecutive games and 12 of 14. In fact, seven consecutive wins equaled a franchise record. However, history was not made on Saturday evening as the team fell 2-1 in a hard-fought game to the Worcester Sharks. Kevin Poulin made his first start in a Sound Tigers sweater this season, and was shaky, but kept Bridgeport in the game by making 25 saves.
On Sunday the story was much of the same at the franchise’s “Right to Play” game. The only difference was that Mike Halmo was back in the lineup for the Sound Tigers. However, the final score was the same as 20 hours earlier. The last place Utica Comets defeated the Sound Tigers 2-1 in front of an average home crowd. Alan Quine, who was a late scratch on Saturday, netted the only goal for Bridgeport.
Due to this week’s NHL call-ups, the Sound Tigers signed forwards Joey Martin and Justin Mercier to professional tryout contracts earlier in the week. Neither player stood out in the three games played this weekend, but Martin did score a goal on Friday in his first game as a Sound Tiger.
The team is now 26-26-1-4 and ten points out of a playoff spot with 19 games remaining. They will travel to Canada this weekend, and face-off with the St. Johns Ice Caps on Friday and Saturday. Both games will be played at 6:00 PM at the Mile One Centre.
The Sound Tigers may look different on Friday after Wednesday’s NHL trade deadline. Depending on what Garth Snow acquires in return for Thomas Vanek and Andrew MacDonald, players could be heading back and forth between Connecticut and Long Island at any given moment. More than likely, the team will wait until they return from their current four game Western Canada swing to make any significant moves.