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Thunderbirds collect three points in three games this weekend

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Springfield drops into fifth place and out of a playoff spot

NHL: Florida Panthers at Anaheim Ducks Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The Springfield Thunderbirds (16-12-5-3) went 1-1-1 this weekend, dropping into fifth place in the AHL’s Atlantic Division and just out of playoff spot. Springfield currently trails fourth place Bridgeport by one point with two games in hand.

On Friday, the T-Birds journeyed to Hartford where they were beaten 3-1 by the Wolf Pack. Defenseman Jacob MacDonald scored Springfield’s only goal, a power-play marker, late in the first period from Matt Mangene and Dryden Hunt to cut Hartford’s lead to 2-1. Samuel Montembeault was the tough luck loser, stopping 23 of the 25 shots he faced.

The Thunderbirds returned home on Saturday night and posted a 5-3 win over the Providence Bruins. Springfield scored four times in the second period to erase a one-goal deficit. Paul Thompson lit the lamp twice and Julian Melchiori, Jonathan Ang and Riley Stillman also tallied, Stillman’s goal was his first in the AHL and Ang notched his second. Dryden Hunt collected three assists, Ang set up two goals, and Bobby Farnham, Harry Zolnierczyk, Jake Horton and Ludwig Bystrom also drew helpers. Goaltender Chris Driedger made 43 stops to get the victory.

Mark Friedman scored 3:21 into overtime to give the visting Lehigh Valley Phantoms a 4-3 win over the T-Birds on Sunday. Sebastian Repo, Harry Zolnierczyk and Josh Brown scored the Springfield goals. Matt Marcinew, Ian McCoshen, Ryan Horvat, Riley Stillman and Paul Thompson picked up assists. Samuel Montembeault took another loss, finishing with 44 saves.