May 5, 2023
HARTFORD, Conn. – After falling to the Providence Bruins in Game 3 on Wednesday, the Hartford Wolf Pack returned to the XL Center for Game 4 of the Atlantic Division Semifinals on Friday night with a trip to the Division Finals in sight. . Dylan Garand had another stellar outing, making 32 saves and earning his second Calder Cup playoff shutout to lead the Wolf Pack to a 4-0 victory over the Bruins and a trip to the Atlantic Division Finals. .
Turner Elson broke the ice at 3:40 into the opening period. Lauri Pajuniemi collected the puck behind the Providence net and found Ryan Carpenter in the right circle. Carpenter quickly sent a pass to Elson, who was positioned in the slot. Elson attempted to drive the puck home, but Brandon Bussi denied the attempt. Elson grabbed his own rebound and was able to sneak the puck past Bussi on the short side, giving the Wolf Pack a lead they wouldn’t lose.
The count was Elson’s fifth career Calder Cup playoff goal and was his first playoff winner.
Jake Leschyshyn extended the lead to two about five minutes into the middle stanza. Tim Gettinger rushed into the Providence area and fired a shot that Bussi denied. Several bodies crashed into the net looking for the rebound, which Leschyshyn found and managed to swing over the redline and into the Providence net. Officials reviewed the play before finally awarding Leschyshyn his first career goal in the Calder Cup playoffs.
Hartford’s lead increased to three just after 15 minutes of the second period. The Bruins tried to clear the puck from their zone, but the point of a pass from Ty Emberson allowed him to reach Jonny Brodzinski alone to the left of the net. Brodzinski fired a shot that was deflected by Bussi, but the rebound went straight into the right circle, where Carpenter fired a shot from a diving Bussi to make the lead three. The goal was Carpenter’s 13e career tally in the Calder Cup playoffs and his second with the Wolf Pack.
Providence lifted Bussi for the extra skater with about eight minutes left in the third period, but Leschyshyn scored his second goal of the game in the empty net at 12:18 of the period. Assists on goal came from Gettinger and Elson, each getting their second point of the night. Gettinger had seven points in the 2023 Calder Cup playoffs, tied for the team lead with Tanner Fritz.
The Bruins challenged Garand throughout the final period, taking twelve shots on goal, but the rookie goaltender denied all twelve attempts to preserve the win. With the win, Hartford won the series by a 3-1 margin.
The Wolf Pack will face the Hershey Bears in the Atlantic Division Finals. The series begins at the Giant Center in Hershey on Thursday, May 11e. The puck drop is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.
The Wolf Pack returns to the XL Center for Game 3 of the best-of-five series on Wednesday, May 17e. The puck drop is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. For tickets, visit www.hartfordwolfpack.com/tickets/playoff-information.
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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 is the top player development affiliate of the NHL’s New York Rangers and plays in the XL Center. The Wolf Pack have welcomed some of Rangers’ new faces including Igor Shesterkin, Filip Chytil and Ryan Lindgren. Follow the wolf pack on Facebook, TwitterInstagram and TikTok.