FALCONS GAME PREVIEW: SPRINGFIELD AT BRIDGEPORT, GAME #58
Springfield Falcons (34-16-4-3) at Bridgeport Sound Tigers (24-24-5-4)
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Webster Bank Arena
RADIO: (presented by FalconsWireless.com) WHYN NewsTalk 560 AM/WHYN.com
Falcons Game Notes (PDF)
IN JUST A FEW HOURS...
The Springfield Falcons kick off a four-game week when they head to Webster Bank Arena to battle their Northeast Division rivals, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, at 7:00 p.m. Springfield resumes its four-game road stretch in search of its first away victory since Feb. 2. The Falcons venture to Providence on Friday before returning home to host the Bruins on Saturday at the MassMutual Center. Springfield closes out the weekend in Connecticut on Sunday against the Whale.
Tonight's game is the first between the Falcons and Sound Tigers since the clubs combined for a 2012-2013 AHL single-game high 244 penalty minutes in a 5-2 Springfield win on Feb. 22. Springfield is 3-0-1-1 against Bridgeport this season and has not lost in regulation to the Sound Tigers since Apr. 4, 2012.
The Falcons lead Connecticut by 11 points for first place in the Northeast Division with four games in hand at the start of the 23rd week of the regular season. Springfield trails Syracuse by four points with three games in hand for Eastern Conference supremacy.
Tonight's broadcast is presented by FalconsWireless.com and starts at 6:58 p.m. on WHYN 560 AM, WHYN.com, the iHeartRadio App, or AHLLive.com.
The first 1,500 fans in attendance on Saturday will receive a free Falcons baseball hat. Fans can also win a free bicycle from Gus Coelho Auto Repair at 442 Holyoke St. in Ludlow as part of "Cycle Saturday."
Single-game tickets to see the Falcons in 2012-2013 can be purchased at the MassMutual Center Box Office from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. through game time on Saturday home dates, and starting four hours prior to Sunday home contests. Fans can also purchase tickets by logging onto Ticketmaster.com. For information about discounted group packages to Falcons home games, call (413) 739-GOAL (4625).
WINNING SEASON WITHIN REACH
The Falcons can clinch a winning record for the second-straight season with a victory tonight. If Springfield wins, it would mark the earliest in the franchise’s 19-year history that the Falcons guaranteed themselves a record above .500. The Falcons’ record for games remaining in a season upon clinching a winning record is 17, recorded in the 1995-1996 campaign. Springfield will have 18 games left after tonight.
ROAD STRUGGLES CONTINUE
Since a 3-2 win in Connecticut on Feb. 2, the Falcons have been winless away from The Nest, going 0-4-1-0 over the last five road games. Springfield has been outscored during its current road losing streak, 18 to 6, including 14 to 3 over the last four away contests. The Falcons’ road losing streak began one month ago in Bridgeport with a 4-3 overtime loss to the Sound Tigers on Feb. 12.
DEFENSE GIVES WAY
Springfield allowed more than two goals in a game on Saturday for the time since Feb. 24, dating back six outings. The Falcons remain second in the league on defense at 2.39 goals against/game and are on pace to allow 182 goals, 33 fewer than their franchise record low of 215, recorded in 1995-1996. Springfield’s +44 goals differential is the highest in the AHL.
PENALTY KILL PUNCTURED
The Falcons allowed one goal on the penalty kill in each of their games this past weekend and moved to fifth in the league while shorthanded at 86.0%. Despite the minor hiccup, the Falcons are 50/55 (90.1%) on the kill dating back to Feb. 2.
MACHACEK JOINS THE MIX
The Columbus Blue Jackets traded for forward Spencer Machacek from the Winnipeg Jets in exchange for forward Tomas Kubalik on Sunday. Machacek could make his Falcons debut tonight.
NEW HIGH FOR NICK
Nick Holden set a career high with an assist on David Savard’s goal on Saturday. Holden now has 26 points (5g-21a) in 2012-2013, one more than his previous career best of 25, set in 2010-2011.
‘JAM’ ADDS TO LEAD
Jonathan Audy-Marchessault posted his team-leading 53rd point of the season when he assisted on David Savard’s goal on Saturday. Audy-Marchessault’s 53 points place him into a four-way tie for third in the AHL, while his 36 assists put him in fifth. He is tied for the Falcons lead with 17 goals.
CAPTAIN CLOSES IN
Ryan Craig is two power-play goals shy of tying Danny Briere and Jean-Guy Trudel for the most man-advantage tallies in team history. Craig has 27 power-play goals, while Briere and Trudel netted 29 with the Falcons.