MANCHESTER, N.H. – Goaltender Jonathan Bernier
earned his ninth shutout of the season with 21 saves as the Manchester Monarchs blanked the Providence Bruins, 3-0, for the sixth time this season at the Verizon Wireless Arena on Saturday night to extend the team’s season-high win streak to seven games.
Manchester (42-26-3-6) remains in third place in the Atlantic Division with 93 points and are headed to the 2010 Calder Cup Playoffs. Providence (34-36-5-1) is in seventh place in the Atlantic Division with 74 points.
“It was a hard-fought game,” said Monarchs Head Coach Mark Morris. “Providence played well tonight. The game was a lot closer than the 3-0 outcome shows.
“We have a couple more division games ahead of us before the playoffs. We need to be consistent, execute our game plan and stay healthy for the post-season.”
Center Oscar Moller started off the scoring late in the first period with his 14th goal of the season. Skating on the power play, defenseman David Kolomatis
controlled the puck in the offensive zone at the left point. Kolomatis sent a swift pass to center Andrei Loktionov
who was streaking down the right wing boards and into the corner. The rookie center found Moller sitting in the slot with a quick pass that was one-timed past Bruins netminder Dany Sabourin to put the Monarchs up 1-0 at 15:57 of the period.
The Monarchs extend their lead to 2-0 with defenseman Viatcheslav Voynov’s 10th goal of the season at the 14:43 mark of the final frame. Left wing Bud Holloway
sent a pass to a streaking Voynov who was flying down the left wing boards. The defenseman sent a shot toward the net that hit off a skate in front and into the back of the net. Center Gabe Gauthier also collected an assist on the goal.
Right wing Trevor Lewis
netted his fifth goal of the season and his first shorthanded goal of the year with 16 seconds remaining in the game to secure a 3-0 win. Center Marc-Andre Cliche
also recorded an assist on the goal.
Bernier (30-20-6) stopped all 21 shots on goal earning his 9th shutout of the season and 30th win of the season. Sabourin (26-26-0) drew the loss, halting 34-of-37 shots on net.
Manchester went 2-for-4 on the power play. Providence was 0-for-4 with the man advantage.
NOTABLES: The Monarchs extend their season-high win streak to seven games (7-0-0-0)…Manchester shutout Providence for the sixth time this season…Defenseman Alec Martinez
’s five-game point streak ended with eight points (1-7=8) after not recording a point versus Providence…Center Oscar Moller is on a two-game scoring streak and has 10 points (4-6=10) in his last nine games…Defenseman Thomas Hickey
returned to action after suffering an upper body injury; his last game was on November 22, 2009 versus Providence in which he recorded an assist….Goaltender Jonathan Bernier
recorded his league-leading ninth shutout of the season with 21 saves…Bernier also collected his first NHL shutout on March 30, 2010 with 34 saves versus Nashville.