A tough stretch of games haunted the Boston Bruins coming into their second game of the back to back in Pittsburgh. The Bruins fell 4-1 to the Penguins on Monday night. The B’s came in seeking revenge.
Just over three minutes into the first, it was David Pastrnak scoring his thirteenth goal on the season. Brad Marchand put the pass on a dime across the crease, and Pastrnak showed off his incredible skill-set with the finish. Pasta deked left before slipping the puck straight through the legs of Pens goalie Casey DeSmith. With just over ten minutes left in the period, Dan Vladar kept the lead for the Bruins.
Vladar, making his first start, was able to reach his stick out to deny Colton Sceviour’s wide open shot opportunity. But, not everything went well in the first period. With under five minutes to go, Brandon Tanev had the game back level. Kapanen grabbed his 13th assist of the year, while Rodrigues earned the other. The Bruins and Pens went into the intermission tied at one a piece.
The second period was a more controversial one. Right off the faceoff, Bergeron was charged with an illegal check to Jake Guentzel, sending him to the box for two minutes. Less than a minute later, Anthony Angello was forced to serve the too many men penalty for the Penguins. Neither team was able to capitalize, and the game went rather quiet until the thirteen minute mark. This was when Brandon Tanev, the Penguins goal scorer, picked up a game misconduct. The hit wasn’t an extremely dirty one, it was just an unfortunate sequence for Tanev.
Tanev tracked down Jarred Tinordi in the open ice at center ice, and laid his shoulder through him. Tinordi clattered into the side boards back-first, and was clearly shaken up. Brandon Tanev picked up the game misconduct for boarding, but the Bruins were still unable to cash in on the ensuing power play. This ended the second with the 1-1 tie still intact.
The Bruins found their game winner seven minutes into the third through Trent Frederic, on the assist by Bergeron and Zboril. Bergeron dropped it back for Zboril at the point, where he laid it off for Frederic. Trent was able to wrist the puck straight past goalie Casey DeSmith for the winner. Frederic now leads the Bruins with three game-winning goals. The Bruins finished strong, and came out with the 2-1 victory.
Boston’s win was much needed, as they have significantly fallen out of the race in the East division. The Capitals and Islanders both lead the Bruins by 8 points, while the Penguins have 3 more points. The top four teams in the division will make the playoffs, so Boston is in the very last playoff spot available.
The Bruins will have a single day off before beginning an important two game series with the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday night at 7:00.