PROVIDENCE, RI- The Syracuse Crunch took game one over the Providence Bruins in the Calder Cup Eastern Conference Finals 6-3 Friday night at the Dunkin Donuts Center.
The Crunch got on the board first almost four minutes into the opening period. Erik Condra created a turnover for the Crunch. Tye McGinn was able to get the puck and take a wrist shot to go by Bruins goaltender Zane McIntyre to go up 1-0.
The Crunch extended their lead to 2-0 on their fifth shot of the game. Michael Bournival put the puck past McIntyre in a scrum. Cory Conacher and Yanni Gourde received the assists on Bournival’s goal.
The Bruins cut the deficit to one at 4:37 into the second period. Alex Grant took a slap shot that beat Crunch goaltender Mike McKenna to cut the deficit for Providence to 2-1. The Crunch regained their two goal lead just two minutes later. Joel Vermin redirected a pass from Matthew Peca past McIntyre to make it 3-1. Matt Taormina received the second assist on Vermin’s goal.
The Crunch extended their lead to three four minutes in the third period. Peca came down the ice and took a shot on McIntyre. He was unable to cover it up and Gabriel Dumont was able to put in the rebound to make it 4-1. Vermin received an assist for a multiple point night.
The Bruins rallied with two goals 13 seconds apart. Jake DeBrusk scored his sixth of the playoffs on an odd man rush with help from Matt Grzelcyk and Alex Grant. Danton Heinen accepted a drop pass from Wayne Simpson to put it past McKenna to make it 4-3. Tommy Cross received the secondary assist.
The Bruins comeback would fall short as the Crunch were too much for Providence to handle on this night. The Crunch added two empty-net goals in with 1:35 left in regulation from Yanni Gourde to make it 5-3. Dumont received the assist on Gourde’s goal. Byron Froese scored the sixth and final goal of the night for the Crunch with help from Peca to seal the deal to make it 6-3.
Crunch goaltender Mike McKenna made 33 saves in the win. Bruins goaltender Zane McIntyre made 19 saves in the loss.
These two teams will meet for game two on Sunday night at the Dunkin Donuts Center. The puck will drop at 7 P.M.