Weekend Preview: Islanders Head to Canada

Bridgeport Islanders Head to Canada This Weekend

Nov 12, 2021

The Bridgeport Islanders (5-5-0-2), American Hockey League affiliate of the New York Islanders, continue a season-long, five-game road trip this weekend with stops in Laval, Quebec and Belleville, Ontario. The weekend schedule begins at 7 p.m. tonight with the second and final matchup against the Laval Rocket (5-5-1-0) and ends Saturday at 7 p.m. against the Belleville Senators (4-7-0-0).



The Islanders are seeking their third straight victory following a 3-1 win against the Syracuse Crunch on Wednesday, led by Jakub Skarek’s 35-save effort on his 22nd birthday. The only goal he allowed came in the first 14 minutes, but Bridgeport responded with three unanswered goals for its first regulation win in Syracuse since Apr. 18, 2015. Chris Terry scored once (PPG, GWG) and added an assist, while Otto Koivula and Mitch Vande Sompel each had a helper and extended their personal scoring streaks to four games.


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Tonight’s game is the second and final meeting between Bridgeport and Laval this season, and the only matchup at Place Bell. The Islanders earned a 3-0 win at Webster Bank Arena just 19 days ago, when Jakub Skarek recorded a 29-save shutout on Oct. 24th. Anatolii Golyshev scored twice for Bridgeport and Chris Terry had an empty-net goal. Bridgeport’s last trip to Quebec was Nov. 16, 2019, when Cayden Primeau made 20 saves in a 3-0 win for the Rocket. It was his first of eight career AHL shutouts.



The Rocket snapped a four-game winless streak (0-3-1-0) on Wednesday night with a 3-0 victory over the Belleville Senators at Place Bell, opening up a three-game homestand. Cayden Primeau made 32 saves on 32 shots, while Alexandre Fortin, Ryan Poehling and Gabriel Bourque each scored. Leading scorer Laurent Dauphin was kept quiet but continues to pace the Rocket in goals (seven) and points (nine) in 11 games. Former 15th overall pick (2019) Cole Caufield earned an assist in his third AHL game this season after he was loaned from Montreal on Nov. 1st.



Saturday’s game is the first of two meetings between the Islanders and Ottawa’s top affiliate, and the only matchup at CAA Arena in Ontario. Belleville won each of the two meetings in 2019-20 including a 4-3 overtime victory at home on Nov. 15, 2019. Bridgeport won both matchups one season prior in 2018-19. The two clubs will meet at Webster Bank Arena on Sunday, Dec. 12th.



The Senators open a three-game homestand on Saturday and are looking to get back into the win column after a 3-0 loss to Laval on Wednesday. Belleville is seventh in the North Division with eight points in 11 games, but has won two of its last three entering the weekend. The Sens are led in scoring by Jake Lucchini with 11 points (six goals, five assists) in 11 games. Lucchini has three goals and three assists in his last five outings.



Otto Koivula has two goals and nine assists for 11 points in his last 10 games. He scored the first goal in Sunday’s win against Hartford, added an assist on Wednesday, and now leads the Isles in scoring through 12 contests. He also leads the team with a plus-5 rating. Koivula’s nine assists are tied for fourth among all AHL players and he is tied for 11th in league scoring. He’s registered at least one point in all but three games this season.



Arnaud Durandeau is second on the Islanders in scoring with nine points (two goals, seven assists) in 12 games. He has five points in his last six games, including a three-point effort last Sunday afternoon. Durandeau has already surpassed his point totals from each of his first two professional seasons. The former sixth-round draft pick (2017) had eight points in 14 games last season and eight points in 21 outings as a rookie in 2019-20.



Chris Terry returns to Place Bell tonight for the first time since he was a member of the 2017-18 Laval squad, when he logged a career-high 71 points (32 goals, 39 assists) in 62 games and won the John B. Sollenberger Trophy as the AHL’s leading scorer… Bridgeport boasts the eighth-best power play on the road, going 5-for-19 (26.3%)… The Islanders are tied for third in the Eastern Conference with 11 first-period goals scored… Bridgeport is 2-0-0-0 against North Division teams this season… Simon Holmstrom has seven points in his last eight games (one goal, six assists)… Anatolii Golyshev has four goals and six points in his last six games.



New York Islanders (5-4-2); Last: 4-0 L at New Jersey, Thursday -- Next: Monday at Tampa Bay, 7 p.m.


Worcester Railers (1-4-0-0): Last: 4-1 L vs. Florida, Sunday - Next: Tonight at Newfoundland, 5:30 p.m.

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