T-Birds Overtake Bruins in See-Saw BattleApr 12, 2017
Springfield, MA- The Springfield Thunderbirds (30-33-9-2) took four separate leads and held on late in the third period to secure a 4-3 win over the Providence Bruins (43-22-5-4) at the MassMutual Center on Wednesday night.
The Thunderbirds would be the lead dogs throughout the night, opening the scoring on their first shot at 8:13 of the first when Jayce Hawryluk surprised Malcolm Subban with a stick-side wrist shot to give Springfield a 1-0 edge.
Providence would equalize matters though at 16:54 as Jordan Szwarz beat Adam Wilcox off a centering pass from behind the net to make it a 1-1 game into the first intermission.
Springfield would again take a lead late in the second. After holding Providence without a shot in the first 11 minutes of the second, the Thunderbirds finally jumped back in front as Zac Lynch tossed a rebound past Subban at 14:54 off assists from Stephen MacAulay and Rob Hamilton. Hamilton's assist was his first AHL point.
Once again, Providence would find the tying marker. This time, Chris Porter jumped to a loose puck to the left of Wilcox and backhanded it through the Springfield goaltender at 17:15 of the second to cause another tie after two periods, 2-2.
As the third period began, the Thunderbirds' forward trio of Paul Thompson, Matt Buckles, and Jared McCann went to the well and dug up a combined five points in the final frame.
First, Thompson connected on a one-timer from the left circle off a steal and feed from McCann at 1:19, putting Springfield ahead 3-2. The Bruins, for a third time, would tie the game moments after a power play ended, as Peter Cehlarik beat Wilcox on a feed from Danton Heinen at 4:58.
One final time, though, the Thunderbirds would take a lead they would not relinquish. After having a potential goal waved off in the second, the trio batted at a bouncing puck near the crease, with Buckles finally breaking through and scoring the game-winner at 7:16.
The final minutes would not tick off without their angst, though, as the Thunderbirds were forced to kill a penalty with 2:05 to play in the third, with Wilcox ending his night with 29 saves for his fifth victory as a Thunderbird.
The Thunderbirds' final weekend of the season marks MGM Springfield Fan Appreciation Weekend. Springfield plays host to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Friday before welcoming the Hartford Wolf Pack on Saturday for the season's final game. Both contests will drop the puck at 7:05 p.m. ET.
Interested in becoming a part of the next era of professional hockey in Springfield? Earn your wings with Springfield Thunderbirds 2017-18 Ticket Memberships, which start as low as $12 per game and feature the most exclusive benefits, including a commemorative jersey and brand new Collectors Mug. For more information, fans may call the Thunderbirds ticket office at (413) 739-GOAL (4625) or visit www.SpringfieldThunderbirds.com.