FALCONS' RALLY FALLS SHORT IN PROVIDENCE
Providence, R.I. - The Springfield Falcons (14-5-1-3) dropped their only contest of a four-game road stretch on Friday night at the Dunkin Donuts Center, scoring three times in the third period but eventually dropping a 6-3 decision to the Providence Bruins (13-8-0-2). Jamie Tardif registered a hat trick for the Bruins in the victory, while Springfield fell in regulation on the road for just the second time this season.
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Springfield's seven-game away points streak and four-game road winning streak each came to an end in the defeat. The Falcons also fell in their 12th attempt at earning their first four-game winning streak within the same season since Dec. 23 to 30, 2006.
The Bruins burst through in the second period with a trio of tallies to take a commanding lead through 40 minutes.
The Falcons allowed a shorthanded goal for the first time in 2012-2013 following a neutral zone turnover in the waning moments of a power play. Lane MacDermid stole a puck, skated to the left wing circle, and blasted a shot by Springfield netminder Curtis McElhinney at 3:35 for a 1-0 Providence lead.
The Bruins increased their advantage with another special teams tally at 11:43, as Tardif backhanded a rebound off a Chris Bourque shot with Providence on the power play for a 2-0 edge.
Off the ensuing face-off, Craig Cunningham took a feed from Carter Camper, escaped to the right-wing circle, and snapped the puck by McElhinney at 11:56, as Providence upped its advantage to 3-0.
The Falcons responded in the third period with a pair of early, quick goals to draw to within one.
Positioned on the doorstep, Tomas Kubalik tipped in a centering feed from Matt Calvert at 2:46, as Springfield beat Providence goaltender Niklas Svedberg to reduce the Bruins' margin to 3-1.
Nick Drazenovic corralled a feed from Jonathan Audy-Marchessault at 3:04 and rocketed a shot by Svedberg from the left circle, as Springfield in a matter of moments reduced the Bruins' bubble to 3-2.
The Bruins grabbed the momentum back at 7:46, as Tardif in the right circle rerouted a Zach Trotman shot by McElhinney to put Providence up by two again, 4-2.
The Falcons answered, however, as Cam Atkinson deflected a heavy John Moore blue-line shot by Svedberg at 9:34, making it a one-goal game again, 4-3.
Providence pulled away in the final half of the third, as Ryan Spooner took a Maxime Sauve pass, embarked on a breakaway, and fired the puck by McElhinney's glove at 12:54, extending the Bruins' lead to 5-3.
With McElhinney pulled for an extra attacker late, Tardif finished off the hat trick by flicking in a shot from center ice at 19:37, closing out the game, 6-3.
McElhinney (13-3-2) saw his personal four-game winning streak end, making 27 saves on 32 shots. Svedberg (11-4-1) set aside 30 of Springfield's 33 attempts.
Springfield returns to the MassMutual Center on Saturday, welcoming the St. John's IceCaps to town with a special start time of 7:30 p.m. Fans can win a free bicycle courtesy of Gus Coelho Auto Repair at 442 Holyoke St. in Ludlow as part of "Cycle Saturday" at the MassMutual Center. Santa Claus will also be venturing down from the North Pole to meet and greet Falcons fans at the game.
Single-game tickets to see the Falcons in 2012-2013 can be purchased at the MassMutual Center Box Office from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. through game time on Saturday home dates, and starting four hours prior to Sunday home contests. Fans can also purchase tickets by logging onto Ticketmaster.com. For information about discounted group packages to Falcons home games, call (413) 739-GOAL (4625).
The Falcons last allowed a shorthanded goal on Mar. 18, 2012 to Providence's Trent Whitfield...Springfield and the Chicago Wolves were the final two teams in the league entering Friday that had not allowed a shorthanded goal...The Falcons have put together three three-game winning streaks this season without earning a fourth-consecutive victory...Springfield has compiled 12 three-game winning streaks since last accomplishing a four-game winning streak from Dec. 23 to 30, 2006...The loss was Springfield's second in regulation on the road, and first since Nov. 14 in a 2-1 defeat to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins...Atkinson has goals in five-straight games and extended his point streak to six games (6g-5a)...Drazenovic upped his point streak to six games (2g-5a)...Springfield went scoreless on the power play for the fifth time in 23 games this season...The three-goal defeat was Springfield's largest of the season and second by more than a goal...The Falcons' other loss by more than one goal came on Oct. 20, 3-1 to Providence, in Springfield's first bid of the season at a four-game winning streak...The hat trick allowed by Springfield to Tardif was the first permitted by the Falcons to an opponent since Apr. 7, 2012 to St. John's' Eric O'Dell...The Falcons allowed more than four goals for the second time this season...The six goals relinquished by Springfield tied a season high (Nov. 23 at Portland)...The Falcons' longest road winning streak is five games, set from Nov. 19 to Dec. 7, 2005...Springfield's longest road points streak is eight games, accomplished from Apr. 10 to Nov. 5, 2005 and also from Jan. 19 to Feb. 18, 1996...The Falcons were victorious in three of four on their road trip, winning 5-0 in Connectict on Dec. 2, and 5-3 and 4-2 in St. John's on Dec. 7, 8...Springfield fell to 8-2-1-0 in away action this season