P-Bruins Crunch-ed in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals at the Dunk
P-Bruins news release…
Providence, RI – The Providence Bruins fell to the Syracuse Crunch Friday night 6-3, dropping the first game of the Eastern Conference Finals. The P-Bruins got goals from Alex Grant, Jake DeBrusk and Danton Heinen while Zane McIntyre earned the start between the pipes.
Providence had a 16-8 shots advantage in the opening period, but the more opportunist Crunch were the ones who got on the board first. Taking advantage of a turnover in the P-Bruin zone created by Erik Condra, Tye McGinn took the puck at the hash and beat McIntyre for his fourth goal of the playoffs, giving the Crunch a 1-0 lead four minutes into the game. Syracuse doubled their lead at 12:20 on a scramble in front of the net, as Michael Bournival deposited a loose puck in the crease for his third postseason goal as the Crunch entered the intermission up 2-0.
Grant and the Bruins cracked the scoreboard 4:37 into the second on a rocket of a slap shot. After keeping the puck in the attacking zone, Grant blasted one by Mike McKenna for his second goal of the playoffs. Matt Grzelcyk and Ryan Fitzgerald picked up helpers on the play as Providence cut their deficit to 2-1. The Crunch quickly regained a two-goal lead at 6:56, taking advantage of their first power play. Matthew Peca sent a pass to Joel Vermin who went back door on McIntyre for his fifth of the playoffs as Syracuse took a 3-1 lead into the break.
Syracuse capitalized on another Providence mistake to take a 4-1 lead four minutes into the third. Vermin put a shot on McIntyre that should have been covered up in the crease, but remained loose for Gabriel Dumot. He scored to seemingly put the game out of reach. Providence, however, would not go down quietly. DeBrusk and Heinen scored within 13 seconds of each other on beautiful wrist shots, making it 4-3 with seven minutes to play. That is where the comeback would, as Syracuse added two empty netters to take game one 6-3.
McIntyre stopped 18 of 22 shots while McKenna stopped 32 of 35. Providence was 0-2 on the power play and 1-2 on the penalty kill. The P-Bruins will look to even the series at a game apiece Sunday night at the Dunk when the teams meet for game two at 7:05pm.