POST GAME: Whale 3, Falcons 2

Ryan Bourque's winner with 15.6 seconds to play is the difference in Springfield's third loss in a row

Sunday, 11.25.2012 / 5:28 PM / News
By Rob Mixer  - BlueJackets.com

CONNECTICUT WHALE (9-7-1) 3, SPRINGFIELD FALCONS (10-3-4) 2
MassMutual Center | Springfield, MA
Attendance: 2,898




THE RUNDOWN

Not only did Ryan Bourque's game-winning goal with 15.6 seconds left seal a heartbreaking defeat, but it provided the first significant adversity faced by the Springfield Falcons this season.

They have dealt with injuries and forming chemistry among a group with a lot of new faces, but a rocking start has them atop the Northeast Division and near the top of the AHL's Eastern Conference.

Springfield's 3-2 loss to rival Connecticut this afternoon at MassMutual Center was its third in a row, and the Falcons have now dropped four of their last six games. They were a quarter of a minute away from forcing overtime for the third straight game and at least salvaging a point, but Paul Dainton was beaten by a puck he would like another shot at.

Bourque skated in down the left wing, got to the top of the left circle and released what looked like a harmless wrister -- but it slid through Dainton's legs and gave the Whale its third and final lead of the day.

Much like their losses on Friday and Saturday night, the Falcons were behind early and had to claw their way back into the game. Matt Gilroy scored his sixth goal of the year to give Connecticut a 1-0 lead just 2:23 into the first period, but Sean Collins -- playing with Ryan Johansen and Jonathan Audy-Marchessault today -- tied the game on a jam play at the side of the net four minutes later.

The Whale regained the lead on a messy play in front of Dainton, as Marek Hrivik just waited for the puck to pop free at the left post. It did, and Hrivik tallied his first goal of the year at 8:07, making for a short-lived tie.

But it was Collins again, scoring a big goal to draw Springfield even. He went top shelf on Jason Missiaen with 4:49 left in the second period, setting the stage for perhaps the most important 20 minutes of the Falcons season.

And unfortunately for the Falcons, they were unscathed for 19:44 of it.


PIVOTAL MOMENT

This one's easy. It's hard to say if Bourque really thought he was going to score the winning goal when he crossed the blue line with inside 20 seconds to play, but his goal was deflating for the Falcons, who had played a pretty solid game.


THREE STARS

1. Ryan Bourque (CT) - GWG

2. Sean Collins (SPR) - two goals

3. Jonathan Audy-Marchessault (SPR) - two assists


UP NEXT
at Manchester Monarchs
Verizon Wireless Arena | Manchester, NH
Friday, 7 p.m.

SCHEDULE

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Johnson 1 1 1 0 2
D. MacKenzie 1 1 0 0 1
M. Letestu 1 1 0 1 1
B. Dubinsky 1 0 1 1 1
B. Jenner 1 0 1 -1 1
F. Tyutin 1 0 0 -1 0
J. Wisniewski 1 0 0 0 0
B. Comeau 1 0 0 -1 0
N. Nikitin 1 0 0 0 0
J. Skille 1 0 0 -1 0
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
S. Bobrovsky 0 1 0 .875 4.07
 
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