PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Rob Klinkhammer scored late in the second period and early in the third as the Portland Pirates broke the Providence Bruins’ six-game winning streak with a 5-2 victory Monday night.
“Those are momentum goals,” Coach Ray Edwards said.
“The shift after a goal is a momentum goal. The shift at the end of a period and the beginning of a period are momentum goals.
“We scored right at the end of that power play which is a big momentum shift. You think you’ve got the penalty killed off and then we get one right at the end of it. Those are momentum goals and were big goals for us.”
Portland led 3-2 when Klinkhammer lifted the rebound of a Boris Valabik shot over a sprawled Michael Hutchinson (30 saves) with 1:47 left in the second.
Then, during a power play that began shortly after Klinkhammer’s goal, he struck again at 1:04 of the third when he finished off a 3-on-1 rush to make it a 5-2 final.
“They were timely goals, especially my first one,” Klinkhammer said. “I thought they were kind of taking it to us. It was one of those things where I got a lucky bounce. I threw it on net. It went in and turned around the momentum.
“I guess it was what our team needed.”
The win moved the Pirates three points ahead of second-place Providence in the AHL’s Atlantic Division.
“We were jacked up for this game,” Klinkhammer said. “They’re a great team. We know they’re right on our heels. They can beat you in a lot of ways.
“We knew we had to bring our ‘A’ game tonight.”
Portland led 1-0 in the first on Chris Brown’s goal at 5:51.
The teams combined five goals in the second session, three by the Pirates for a 4-2 lead.
Jordan Martinook made it 2-0 lead at 4:28 when he buried the rebound of Darian Dziurzynski’s shot. But Providence’s Jamie Tardif scored the first of his two goals during a power play at 9:13.
Portland’s Phil Lane countered at 13:53 when he put a move on a Providence defenseman and beat Hutchinson for a 3-1 lead.
“Phil Lane’s goal was a big goal because it was 2-0 and they made it 2-1,” Edwards said. “For Phil to make it 3-1 was a big goal.
“He got it the right way by driving hard to the net and just being simple.”
Tardif followed with his second goal, at 14:31, when his wrist shot during a breakaway trickled past Mark Visentin (25 saves).
“We knew Providence was playing well,” Edwards said. “They’re a good hockey club. They’ve played us very well and have won the majority of the points in this season series.”