Nashville, TN – In a low scoring first game at Bridgestone Arena, the Florida Panthers fell 2-1 to the Nashville Predators on Saturday afternoon. Panthers netminder Al Montoya made his preseason debut for the Cats, making nine saves on 10 shots in 40 minutes of action.
F Craig Smith put the Predators on the scoreboard first when he found the back of the net less than five minutes into the contest. Panthers F Brandon Pirri tied the game at 1-1, with his second of the preseason, when he banged a rebound past Nashville G Rob Madore late in the third period. Jimmy Hayes and Shane O’Brien assisted on Pirri’s tally.
Pirri’s power play goal forced overtime and the game was decided in a shootout.
Panthers G Sam Brittain played the third period stopping 7 out of 7 in the third period and 3 out of 3 in the OT period. Florida out shot Nashville 24-20 through regulation and overtime.
Derek Roy and Craig Smith slipped goals past Brittain in the shootout. Nashville’s Carter Hutton stopped Vincent Trocheck’s backhand and Brad Boyes’ wrister, giving the Predators a 2-1 victory in the shootout.
The two teams will meet for the second game of the double header at 8 p.m. tonight.