Ben Walter had a hat trick, including the go-ahead goal with 13:35 left in regulation, as the Providence Bruins pulled out a 5-4 victory over the Hartford Wolf Pack in Game 7 at the Hartford Civic Center on Sunday evening.
The Bruins become just the third team in AHL history to win both Game 6 and Game 7 of a Calder Cup Playoff series on the road. Providence will face Manchester in the Atlantic Division finals beginning Tuesday night.
Walter, the son of long-time NHL forward Ryan Walter, scored three tie-breaking goals on the night, beginning 4:11 into the game. The Wolf Pack were called for handling the puck in the crease and Walter scored on the ensuing penalty shot, giving Providence an important early 1-0 lead. The team that scored first won all seven games in the series.
With the score knotted at 1-1, Walter scored on a power play at the 11:17 mark of the first. Hartford rallied again, but Walter’s third goal of the evening and fourth of the series put Providence ahead to stay.
Hannu Toivonen finished with 40 saves for the Bruins, including 15 in the third period as the Wolf Pack pressed for the equalizer.
Hartford forwards Alex Bourret and Nigel Dawes recorded a goal and assist apiece and finished with 11 points each in the series. The Wolf Pack went 2-for-10 on the power play in Game 7 after going 2-for-30 in the first six games combined.
Atlantic Division Final – Series "I" (best-of-7)
A1-Manchester Monarchs vs. A3-Providence Bruins
Game 1 – Tue., May 1 – Providence at Manchester, 7:05
Game 2 – Wed., May 2 – Providence at Manchester, 7:05
Game 3 – Tue., May 8 – Manchester at Providence, 7:05
Game 4 – Wed., May 9 – Manchester at Providence, 7:05
*Game 5 – Sat., May 12 – Providence at Manchester, 7:35
*Game 6 – Mon., May 14 – Manchester at Providence, 7:05
*Game 7 – Wed., May 16 – Providence at Manchester, 7:05
All times Eastern