Pens Destroy Tigers, 7-0

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. – The Bridgeport Sound Tigers were shut out for the second straight night, falling to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins 7-0 on Sunday afternoon at Webster Bank Arena.

The game started out rather slowly, with both teams playing a tight defensive game.  The only thing of note was a fight between Bridgeport’s Brett Gallant and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s Bobby Farnham, but it was a quick bout, with Gallant dropping Farnham after just a few seconds.

The contest opened up after the fight, with the Penguins getting a few good chances. They would strike first just after the initial penalty of a 5-on-3 opportunity expired, as Tom Kuhnhackl deflected a Brian Dumoulin shot past Bridgeport goaltender David Leggio.  The power play goal was Kuhnhackl’s sixth tally of the season.

The Sound Tigers had a great chance to tie the game while on a 5-on-3 advantage of their own, but were unable to solve Penguins netminder Matt Murray. The Penguins nearly scored on their own goal, as they passed the puck back to nobody on a delayed penalty on the Sound Tigers. However, the puck missed the net by mere inches, keeping the Penguins in front.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton would double their lead on the ensuing 4-on-4.  Jayson Megna skated towards the Bridgeport net and toe dragged the puck around the defense. He then threw a pass in front onto the tape of Josh Archibald, who buried the shot into the open mesh for his third marker of the season.

The onslaught would continue early in the second period, as a costly turnover put the puck right onto Megna’s stick.  From there, Megna fired a rocket of a wrist shot past Leggio, increasing the Sound Tigers’ deficit to three.  The goal was Megna’s 16th of the season.

Dumoulin would increase the Penguins’ lead to four just seconds into a power play.  Wilkes-Barre/Scranton won the faceoff and Dumoulin fired a snapshot from the point through a screen, beating Leggio.  The Bridgeport goaltender couldn’t see the shot coming because of the screen, giving him no chance to stop the puck.

The Penguins scored early in the third period to increase the lead to five.  Scott Wilson streaked down the left wing and ripped a slap shot off the right post and into the net for his 14th goal of the year.

The game got progressively nastier from here, with a number of scrums in the corner and a couple of fights.  The penalties resulted in a 4-on-4 situation, which Andrew Ebbett of the Penguins scored on to make the game a six-goal affair.  The Sound Tigers took a penalty as the 4-on-4 expired, giving the Penguins a 5-on-3 advantage, which Archibald scored on to increase Bridgeport’s deficit to seven.

The game ended in this fashion, with the Sound Tigers getting shut out in back-to-back contests. Murray made 18 saves for the shutout victory, keeping the puck out when it mattered most and making some big stops.

The Sound Tigers return to action on Friday, March 6 at 7:05 p.m. when they travel to Allentown to take on the Lehigh Valley Phantoms.

Notes: It was Taste of Connecticut Day at the Arena, presented by the Connecticut Better Business Bureau…The teams combined for 78 penalty minutes…The Sound Tigers have tied a franchise-record by losing their ninth straight game.

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