(Rochester, NY) … The Rochester Americans (5-3-1-1) scored three times in the third period to close the gap, including twice in the opening minute, but ultimately saw their comeback fall just short in a 4-3 loss to the Providence Bruins (6-3-0-2) Wednesday night at The Blue Cross Arena.
Despite the regulation loss, Rochester’s first on home ice this season, the Amerks closed out the month of October having earned 12 out of a possible 20 points through their first 10 games of the season. Coming into tonight’s matchup, the club collected points in five of its last six games overall.
WATCH: GAME HIGHLIGHTS
Forward Kevin Porter notched his first multi-point game of the season with a goal and an assist while C.J. Smith and Sean Malone each scored their third goals of the campaign. Goaltender Jonas Johansson (2-2-1) made his fourth straight appearance in the crease but suffered the loss as he stopped 22 of 26 shots he faced.
Alex Petrovic and Peter Cehlarik registered a pair of assists for Providence, which improved to 9-1-0-0 in the last 10 meetings against the Amerks over the last five seasons. Zach Senyshyn, Robert Lantosi, Jack Studnicka and Paul Carey all found the back of the net while netminder Max Lagace pushed his record to 4-1-1 as he made 32 saves.
WATCH: KEVIN PORTER POST-GAME
After coming within a score thanks to a pair of goals 19 seconds apart in the first minute of the final frame, the Amerks saw the Bruins regain their two-goal lead midway through the third period while on a two-man advantage.
“We were down three goals and we knew we only had 20 minutes to get back into the game,” said Porter. “It was good that we were able to get two quick goals, but we should never fall behind by three goals.”
“When we are at our best we win the battles, have good play along the walls, in the corners, have good net-front presence, creating more traffic in front of the goaltenders,” said interim head coach Gord Dineen. “We certainly were not going to try to invent things during the second intermission, but we just had to get back to our identity on those things.”
WATCH: ANDREW MacWILLIAM POST-GAME
The power-play goal by Carey at the 8:32 mark was the Bruins’ third of the game and fourth while on the special teams.
“Our special teams need to be better,” Porter continued. “We need to all be on the same page and win the 50-50 battles.”
“We did some things we really liked on both the man-advantage and penalty kill, but in the end, it’s the details that were missed,” said Dineen. “We ended up not scoring with our power-play whereas they were able to score three power-play goals.
WATCH: GORD DINEEN POST-GAME
As the contest was dwindling down and Rochester trailing 4-2, rookie winger Brett Murray stripped a Providence skater of the puck behind the net before dishing a pass across the crease to Porter. As Rochester’s captain collected the puck, he roofed a shot under the crossbar to bring the Amerks within a goal with 3:40 left in regulation.
“Fortunately, the puck was fumbled behind the net and I saw ‘Ports’ coming down the slot and he made a great play to finish it off,” described Murray of Porter’s third goal of the slate.
Dineen pulled Johansson for the extra attacker for the final 94 seconds, but the Amerks could not final the equalizer and force overtime for the third time in consecutive games.
WATCH: BRETT MURRAY POST-GAME
Providence opened the game with three goals during the first two periods, including twice on the power-play and one shorthanded tally to take a 3-0 advantage into the third period.
Rochester made it a one-goal game twice during the final frame but the Bruins hung on for the 4-3 victory.
The Amerks open the month of November on Friday, Nov. 1 when they welcome the Binghamton Devils to The Blue Cross Arena at 7:05 p.m. Friday’s matchup against the Devils begins a stretch in with the Amerks will play 10 of their next 11 games against North Division opponents. The contest will be carried live on The Sports Leader AM 950/95.7 FM ESPN Rochester as well as AHLTV.
ROC: C.J. Smith (3), S. Malone (3), K. Porter (3)
PRO: R. Lantosi (3), J. Studnicka (2), Z. Senyshyn (1), P. Carey (6 – GWG)
ROC: J. Johansson – 22/26 (L)
PRO: M. Lagace – 32/35 (W)
ROC: PP (0/6) | PK (3/6)
PRO: PP (3/6) | PK (6/6)
1. P. Cehlarik (PRO)
2. K. Porter (ROC)
3. A. Petrovic (PRO)