On Sunday afternoon the Providence Bruins took on the Portland Pirates. The baby Bruins looked to bounce back after an overtime loss to the Wilkes Barre Scranton Penguins on Friday. Zane McIntyre got his second start in net for the baby Bruins with Malcolm Subban still out injured. It was non-stop action from the puck drop, Frank Vatrano took a pass from Alexander Khoklachev and Austin Czarnik then buried it in the back of the net just seven seconds into the game. It was the fastest goal to be scored against the Portland Pirates in their teams history. The baby Bruins young speedy offense was able to control the pace of play throughout the entire first period. Vatrano added his second of the game, and the period, at 18:48 off a pass from Tommy Cross on the power play. The baby Bruins led 2-0 heading into the first intermission and outshot the Pirates 11 to 4 in the period.
The second period started out completely opposite of the first, the Pirates controlled the pace of play early. The Bruins looked sluggish and stunned by the early onslaught from the Pirates; McIntyre was forced to stand on his head for shot after shot. But at 9:44 into the period Kyle Rau buried a goal that was assisted by Sena Acolatse and Wayne Simpson. But it didn’t end there for the Pirates, they continued to pepper McIntyre. The Bruins didn’t get their first shot of the period until 10:55 into the second. Then at 15:55 the Pirates struck again this time it was Sena Acolatse who buried a pass from Brent Olson. It took the Bruins only 21 seconds to answer back, it was Austin Czarnik’s first professional goal assisted by Chris Casto at 16:34. But it was the Pirates who struck next scoring 1:26 later on a goal by Rob Schremp assisted by Rob Flick and Shane Harper. The nightmare of a period finally came to an end for the baby Bruins and McIntyre was able to take a breather. The Baby Bruins went into the dressing room tied 3-3, with a lot of problems that needed to be addressed. The Pirates outshot the Bruins in the period 21 to 4, this put the two period total at Bruins 15 and the Pirates 25.
With both teams tied coming back on the ice for the third period, it set up what could be an instant classic of a game. Just 1:42 into the third period the Pirates found themselves in penalty trouble early with Garrett Wilson going off for a very questionable boarding call. This sent the baby Bruins back on the power play which was already 1 for 1 in the game. Ben Youds was the first defenseman on the board for the baby Bruins scoring on the power play 2:41 into the period, this gave the Bruins the 4-3 lead. Just 2:18 later Frank Vatrano stole the puck in the neutral zone took it on a mini breakaway and put it past Mike McKenna for his first professional hat trick. The goal gave the baby Bruins the 5-3 lead and put them in the driver seat to win the game. Things did get a little tense for Bruins fans after former Providence Bruin Rob Flick scored off of a pass from Rob Schremp and Shane Harper at 11:57. The goal put the Pirates in striking distance with a score of 5-4 with under ten minutes to play in the game. But 17:39 into the period the Pirates again found themselves in penalty trouble, it put the baby Bruins back on the power play which was perfect to that point. Forty seconds later queue Frank Vatrano, he took a pass from Alexander Khoklachev, it was Vatrano’s fourth goal of the game and capped off a career night. The Bruins put the game out of reach at 6-4. The horn finally sounded giving the baby Bruins their first win of the season, and Zane McIntyre earned his first professional win. The final shots were 31 for the Pirates and 24 for the Bruins.
After the game Coach Bruce Cassidy talked about the tough second period saying “there are a lot of things that need to be corrected”. He also talked about how to handle such a young team after a bad period saying “I didn’t need to tear the paint off the walls; with such a young team they knew that they were down and out. It was more looking at what we did and making a note of how we could correct it”. I also caught up with Baby Bruins Goalie Zane McIntyre and asked what it was like to get his first win “It was good, really really good. I’ve been dreaming about this for a while and we all battled hard. It was a good feeling to finally get it”. My three stars of the game are very Providence Bruins heavy. Third star Zane McIntyre; even though he allowed four goals he still made 27 saves for his first win as a pro. Second star Austin Czarnik, he had two assist and his first pro goal for the Providence Bruins in the win. First star Frank Vatrano, who else would it be, he scored four goals in the game and now has five through two games. Next the Providence Bruins will take on the Hartford Wolfpack on Wednesday at 7 pm in Hartford.