Aatu Raty scored 12:53 into overtime as the Bridgeport Islanders defeated the Providence Bruins, 2-1, to complete a two-game sweep of their first-round playoff series on Wednesday night.
The Islanders will meet the Charlotte Checkers in the Atlantic Division semifinals beginning Tuesday, May 10.
The 19-year-old Raty, playing in just his fourth North American game, put a shot low past Troy Grosenick from the top of the left-wing circle to secure Bridgeport’s first playoff series triumph since 2003 ― when Raty was five months old. A second-round pick in the 2021 NHL Draft, Raty joined the Islanders after playing 47 games in the Finnish SM-liiga this season.
Game 2 was scoreless into the third period until Bridgeport converted on a power play to take a 1-0 lead at 3:29. Michael Dal Colle won a battle in front of the net and knocked home the rebound of Chris Terry’s shot for his first career postseason goal.
The lead held until the Bruins drew even with 6:46 to go in regulation. Joona Koppanen dug the puck free from a battle along the boards and centered a feed to defenseman Nick Wolff, who wristed home the first goal of his AHL career.
Cory Schneider (2-0), who made 46 saves in Bridgeport’s 2-1 overtime victory on Monday, stopped 29 shots in the Game 2 win. Grosenick (0-2) finished with 32 saves.
Atlantic Division First Round – Series “A” (best-of-3)
A3-Providence Bruins vs. A6-Bridgeport Islanders
Game 1 – Mon., May 2 – Bridgeport 2, PROVIDENCE 1 (OT)
Game 2 – Wed., May 4 – BRIDGEPORT 2, Providence 1 (OT)