SOUND TIGERS Kubiak, Eansor each score in the first period to propel Bridgeport to road win

February 3, 2019

WILKES-BARRE — The Bridgeport Sound Tigers (25-17-4-2) scored twice in the first period and outplayed the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (23-19-4-1) in every frame on Saturday to earn a 2-1 road win at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza.

Scott Eansor and Jeff Kubiak each found the back of the net and Jeremy Smith (14-8-2) made 25 saves as the Sound Tigers reclaimed second place in the Atlantic Division standings (56 points).

The Sound Tigers solved Penguins goaltender Tristan Jarry early, and late, in the opening period to build their 2-1 lead heading into the first intermission. Kubiak broke the ice less than two minutes into the game when he capitalized on a pair of rebounds to collect his third goal of the season. Seth Helgeson and Ben Holmstrom both tested Jarry early on but were denied by leg-pad saves. On Holmstrom’s chance, the puck angled back to the low slot where Kubiak slammed it home at the 1:57 mark.

Ethan Prow knotted the game at the 14:42 mark with his team-leading eighth power-play goal and his 15th of the year overall, which is tied for second among AHL defensemen. Following a hooking penalty accessed to Travis St. Denis at 14:28, Adam Johnson settled Joe Blandisi’s pass in the high slot and looked off a drive to set up Prow. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s All-Star representative called for the puck on the right side and rifled a shot past Jeremy Smith to make it 1-1.

Eansor put the Sound Tigers back in front during the closing seconds of the first period when he scored his sixth goal of the season. Yannick Rathgeb advanced a pass down the right wing and Eansor carried it to the bottom the circle before hitting the brakes and surveying the Penguins’ zone. With nothing available, Eansor turned to his forehand and snapped a short-side shot past Jarry’s glove to make it 2-1.

Bridgeport outshot Wilkes-Barre/Scranton 14-8 in the second period and 12-8 in the third, but Smith and Jarry were both effective in the final 40 minutes of the 2-1 final. Tanner Fritz and Otto Koivula came the closest to scoring, each hitting iron with shots of the post, but the Sound Tigers were held to just two goals. It was their sixth win of the season when scoring two goals or fewer.

The Sound Tigers also finished the game 0-for-5 on the power play and 2-for-3 on the penalty kill. Josh Ho-Sang, Parker Wotherspoon, Mike Sislo, Stephen Gionta and Matt Lorito sat out as the Bridgeport scratches.

The Sound Tigers continue a three-game road trip on Tuesday with a 7 p.m. matchup against the Hartford Wolf Pack at the XL Center.

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