By: Nathan Strauss | Follow him on Twitter @NathanPStrauss
The Providence Bruins put together their most complete weekend of the year, beating the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins and the Hershey Bears in a two-day tour of Pennsylvania. On Friday night, the P-Bruins chased reigning AHL Goaltender of the Month, Fille Lindberg, as they put four past the UMass product (who had previously allowed just seven all season) before tacking on two more in a 6-2 victory. On Saturday, another complete effort led to former Providence College standout Jon Gillies picking up his first shutout with Providence as they downed Hershey 3-0. Following the two wins, Providence sits in fourth place in the Atlantic at 4-3-1-1, with first-place Springfield coming up midweek. Let’s take a look at the top performers from this weekend!
THIRD STAR: STEVEN FOGARTY
The former Notre Dame captain had himself a three-goal weekend in his home state, scoring twice on Saturday en route to being named the game’s second star. Fogarty had not scored a goal this season before this weekend but finally broke through with a big offensive performance. He tacked on three goals and one assist while registering five shots on goal and was a remarkable +4 over the two games. Fogarty is in his first year in the Bruins organization after captaining Rochester last year.
SECOND STAR: JON GILLIES
A name that will be familiar to many in the Providence area, Jon Gilles was loaned to Providence on a PTO as they dealt with an injury crisis amongst their goaltenders. Despite opening the season with the ECHL Maine Mariners, Gilles picked up back-to-back wins, including a shutout on Saturday in which he stopped all 31 shots he faced. Gilles made his NHL debut with the Calgary Flames, who drafted him in the third round back in 2012, but he has played primarily at the AHL level since leaving Providence College. On Friday, he allowed two goals on 31 shots faced, meaning he leaves the weekend with a .962 save percentage and a 1.00 GAA with Providence. Whether he sticks around or eventually returns to Maine, we shall see, but he has certainly earned himself another look in the spoked P.
FIRST STAR: OSKAR STEEN
Just a week after being named the first star of the weekend in these same rankings, Oskar Steen once again showed up in a big way. Last weekend, he was coming off a brief stint at the NHL level that included his first NHL point. This weekend, he played as if he was desperate to return to the bright lights of TD Garden. Playing center rather than wing, Steen scored twice on Friday and added two helpers on Saturday. Across the two games, he was a team-high +5, a testament to his strong skating and production. He was a menace when creating chances in the slot, using his speed to get into high-danger areas in and around the crease. His productivity has helped unleash what had been a somewhat dormant Providence offense. If he keeps playing in the same style, it won’t be long before the former sixth-rounder gets another chance at the NHL level.