BRODZINSKI STRIKES TWICE AS WOLF PACK WIN KEY MATCHUP WITH ISLANDERS 4-1Mar 29, 2023
HARTFORD, CT – The Hartford Wolf Pack hosted the Bridgeport Islanders at the XL Center on Wednesday night for a crucial tilt in the Atlantic Division playoff chase. Jonny Brodzinski continued to torch the Isles, potting a pair of goals as the Wolf Pack earned a key 4-1 win in the penultimate installment in the ‘Battle of Connecticut’.
Jake Leschyshyn tallied the eventual game-winner midway through the second period. Chris Terry was sent to the box for hooking, giving the Wolf Pack their second powerplay opportunity of the game. Lauri Pajuniemi fed the puck to Leschyshyn, who skated to the bottom of the left circle and snapped a shot from a sharp angle over the blocker of Cory Schneider. The goal gave the Pack a lead they would not give up. The goal was Leschyshyn’s first game-winning tally as a member of the Wolf Pack, and his tenth point in thirteen games with Hartford.
The Islanders broke the ice just over thirteen minutes into the first period. Collin Adams freed the puck from a scrum along the right wall and Paul Thompson corralled it. Thompson then snapped a shot over the glove of Louis Domingue from the right-wing circle, giving the Islanders the game’s first lead. The goal was the veteran forward’s fourth against the Wolf Pack this season and stood as the only blemish on Domingue’s record in the contest.
The Wolf Pack answered back to the tune of three goals in the middle stanza for the second straight meeting. Brodzinski stole the puck at center ice and had a partial two-on-one breakaway opportunity with Will Cuylle. Brodzinski powered into the right circle and elected to shoot, ripping a shot by the glove of Schneider to tie the contest at one. The goal was Brodzinski’s eighth against the Islanders on the campaign, and his team-leading 42nd point.
Leschyshyn struck on the powerplay at 9:49, putting the game out of reach for good.
Karl Henriksson stretched the lead to two just over the seventeen-minute mark of the period. Brandon Scanlin blasted a one-timer from the blue line that hit two sticks on its way to the goal. The puck grazed off Terry’s stick and then Henriksson deflected the puck past the blocker of Schneider. The goal was Henriksson’s sixth of the campaign, and the Wolf Pack took a 3-1 lead into the final stanza.
Brodzinski ended the intrigue at 17:57 of the third period, scoring his second goal of the game on an empty Bridgeport net. It was the Wolf Pack captain’s 20th goal of the season, becoming the second member of the Wolf Pack to hit that mark. The tally also represented Brodzinski’s team-leading 43rd point of the campaign.
The Islanders peppered Domingue in the final stanza, firing sixteen shots on the veteran netminder. Domingue denied all of them, however, and the Wolf Pack earned a pivotal 4-1 victory over their in-state rivals.
The Wolf Pack return to the XL Center on Friday, March 31st, hosting the Providence Bruins. Join us for ‘Miracle League Night’ and $2 beers and $1 hot dogs! The puck drop is set for 7:00 p.m. To get tickets, visit www.hartfordwolfpack.com.
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ABOUT THE HARTFORD WOLF PACK: The Hartford Wolf Pack has been a premier franchise in the American Hockey League since the team’s inception in 1997. The Wolf Pack are the top player-development affiliate of the NHL's New York Rangers and play at the XL Center. The Wolf Pack has been home to some of the Rangers newest faces including Igor Shesterkin, Filip Chytil, and Ryan Lindgren. Follow the Wolf Pack on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok.