01/18/2014 2:14 PM
The Springfield Falcons (27-8-1-3) scored four unanswered goals in the third period to dissolve a two-goal deficit and defeat the Providence Bruins by the final score of 5-3 Saturday night at the MassMutual Center in downtown Springfield.
Down by two goals entering the third period, the Falcons began the scoring early in the final frame. Spencer Machacek jammed the puck past Providence netminder Niklas Svedberg on the doorstep just 36 seconds into the period, cutting the Bruins lead in half. The Falcons evened the score at the 12:45 mark, as Jonathan Marchessault fired a shot from just inside the left-wing circle that deflected off of Ryan Craig’s skate and into the net. For the Springfield captain, the goal was his seventh of the season and moves him into sole possession of eighth place on the franchise’s all-time points list at 123, one more than Jason McBain.
Just 30 seconds after Craig’s goal evened the score, Sean Collins chipped a Tim Erixon centering feed past Svedberg to give the Falcons a 4-3 lead. For Collins, the goal was his sixth goal of the season and fifth in six games against Providence. The tally also served as the game-winning goal, his first of the season.
After a Michael Chaput minor penalty in the final minute of regulation, Andrew Joudrey scored a shorthanded, empty-net goal with 35 seconds remaining to extend the Falcons lead to 5-3 and seal the victory. The shorthanded tally was Joudrey’s fourth as a member of the Falcons, tying him with Matt Calvert, Jeff Daniels, Jason Jaspers, Norm Milley and Erik Westrum for the most in franchise history.
Joudrey’s empty-netter was his second goal of the game and third point of the contest. The Bedford, Nova Scotia native found the back of the net at 5:28 of the first period to give Springfield an early 1-0 lead.
Defensemen Tim Erixon and Cody Goloubef each added two assists and boasted a +3 rating in Saturday’s contest.
Goaltender Jeremy Smith improved to 17-6-2, making 22 saves on 25 shots in net for Springfield. Smith is now 4-1-1 in six starts against the Bruins this season.
Svedberg stopped 40 of 44 shots, falling to 15-8-3 this season.
With the win, the Falcons improved their league-leading points percentage to .744. The team is tied with Manchester for the most points in the AHL with 58, despite playing four fewer games than the Monarchs to date.
The Falcons are back in action Monday, January 20 when they host the Adirondack Phantoms at the MassMutual Center at 3:00 p.m. After the game, the team, along with KIX 100.9, will host a performance by actress and country music star Lucy Hale. Hale is best known for her role on the hit ABC Family series, “Pretty Little Liars.” Her debut single, “You Sound Good to Me,” became available for download earlier this month.