By: Tim A Richardson | Follow Me On Twitter @TimARichardson
Week 27 of the AHL season is here, and the Providence Bruins skate into it 33-20-4-6 (76 points). That is good for third in the Atlantic Division and fourth in the Eastern Conference. Our boys in black and gold are coming off a week that saw them fall to Bridgeport 3-2 before defeating Bridgeport 6-2 and Lehigh Valley 2-1. Providence has three games coming up that you will not want to miss.
The weekend starts on Saturday, April 16, 2022, when the Providence Bruins travel to Allentown, Pennsylvania, to take on the Lehigh Valley Phantoms at the PPL Center. The weekend continues on Sunday, April 17, 2022, when the Providence Bruins travel to Hershey, Pennsylvania, to take on the Hershey Bears at the Giant Center. The weekend ends on Tuesday, April 19, 2022, when the Lehigh Valley Phantoms travel to Providence, Rhode Island, to take on the Bruins at the Dunkin Donuts Center. Do not miss the action.
Saturday, April 16, 2022, and Tuesday, April 19, 2022, Providence Bruins vs. Lehigh Valley Phantoms ( AWAY, HOME)
The Saturday and Tuesday matchups will mark the fifth and sixth of six the Phantoms and Bruins have this season. The first battle saw the Bruins come out on top 6-3. Matt Filipe, Steven Fogarty, Zach Senyshyn (3), and Jack Studnicka had goals for Providence. Goalie Jon Gillies made 31 stops in the victory.
The second game saw the Bruins fall 5-1. Jesper Froden scored for Providence. The Providence defense let them down, giving up five goals in the loss. The third battle saw the Bruins win 5-3. Zach Senyshyn(2), Steven Fogarty, Oskar Steen and Joona Koppanen scored for Providence. The fourth matchup saw the Bruins win 2-1. Aaron Ness and Victor Berglund scored for Providence.
The Lehigh Valley Phantoms skate into the matchup 26-30-7-4 (63 points). That is good for eighth in the Atlantic Division and 14th in the Eastern Conference. The Philadelphia affiliate has suffered from one of the worst defenses in the AHL. They are giving up 3.17 goals a game. On the flip side, the Providence Bruins only give up 2.65 goals a game, boasting one of the better defenses in the AHL. Grabbing an early lead will help the Bruins. Lehigh Valley is 8-15-3-1 when trailing after one period and 4-21-2-1 when down after two.
Sunday, April 17, 2022, Providence Bruins vs. Hershey Bears (AWAY)
The Sunday matchup marks the sixth of six that these two teams will have this season. In the first battle, the Bruins came out on top 3-0. Steven Fogarty (2) and Chris Wagner had goals for Providence. Jon Gillies was superb between the pipes, stopping all 31 shots he faced. The second game saw the Bruins fall 4-3. Cameron Hughes, Steven Fogarty, and Jack Ahcan scored for the Bruins.
The third battle saw the Bruins win 5-0. Eduards Tralmaks, Victor Berglund, Cameron Hughes, Jesper Froden, and Chris Wagner scored for Providence. Troy Grosenick had 34 saves in the shutout. The fourth installment of the season series saw the Bruins win 4-1. Eduards Tralmaks, Zach Senyshyn, Jesper Froden, and Jack Ahcan scored goals for the Bruins.
Providence won the fifth game of the season series 2-0. Tyler Lewington and Matt Filipe found the back of the net for Providence. Troy Grosenick was excellent for our boys in black and gold, stopping 28 shots in the shutout victory.
The Hershey Bears skate into the matchup 33-27-5-4 (75 points). That is good for fourth in the Atlantic Division and tenth in the Eastern Conference. The Washington affiliate has one of the most well-rounded teams in the AHL. They score 2.78 goals a game while giving up 2.75. On the positive side, Providence historically plays very well against Hershey. The Bruins are 16-5-1-1 against the Bears over the past five seasons. Do not miss this game!
My Players To Watch This Weekend
Justin Brazeau: 2021-2022 is the first season Justin Brazeau has spent with Providence. The young forward split time between the ECHL Maine Mariners and the AHL Providence Bruins. In 43 games with Providence, he has tallied 12 goals while dishing out 15 assists for 27 total points. Brazeau is a big-bodied, bruising forward with some offensive upside. Look for him this weekend.
On The Blue Line
Victor Berglund: Victor Berglund continues to have an excellent with the Providence Bruins. Berglund has played superb defense and found his offensive stride as well. In 41 games, he’s scored six goals while dishing out 11 assists for 17 total points. Look for him this weekend.
Troy Grosenick: Troy Grosenick has been a veteran anchor for the Bruins in goal this season. In 28 games, he is 16-5-4 with a 2.02 goals-against average and a .931 save percentage. Look for him this weekend.
The Providence Bruins are coming off a successful week where they lowered their magic number from 11 to two. As I explained last week, that is the number of points needed to earn a playoff spot. That magic number reduces when the Providence Bruins earn points in the standings and when the team with the highest possible percentage outside of the playoffs does not record a point. We could see the Providence Bruins clinch a playoff birth this weekend. I hope everyone has enjoyed the season. Feel free to send me any comments or questions on Twitter. As always, GO, Bs, GO!