Providence takes sole possession of third place with 6-1 win over Portland
Pirates and P-Bruins split key home-and-home
The Portland Pirates were soundly beaten 5-1 by the Providence Bruins last night at Cross Insurance Arena. The loss snapped a four-game winning streak and dropped the Pirates into a fourth-place tie in the AHL's Atlantic Division with Wilkes-Barre.
Providence's Ben Sexton opened the scoring with a shorthanded goal 11:23 into the first period.
Seth Griffith, who would also collect two helpers, added to the Bruins' lead at the 8:27 mark of the second period.
The Pirates got on the board when Logan Shaw (9) scored, from Connor Brickley and Wade Megan, 1:03 later.
Brandon DeFazio notched a power-play goal at 15:08 to restore Providence's two-goal advantage.
The Bruins lit up Mike McKenna, who finished with 27 saves, in the final frame, scoring three times in just over eleven minutes to send the veteran goalie to the bench, with Sam Brittain coming on in relief.
Alexander Khokhlachev at 1:11, Ben Youds at 8:41 and Khokhlachev again at 11:02 were Providence's third period scorers.
Zane McIntyre made 27 stops to post the win.
The Pirates (39-26-5-2) get right back at it this afternoon, hosting the Hartford Wolf Pack at 3 pm. The Wolf Pack have pulled within 4 points of Portland for the final playoff berth in the Eastern Conference. If the Pirates win in regulation, they will clinch a spot in the postseason.