Picking up where they left off in Game 1 on Wednesday, the Hartford Wolf Pack completed a two-game sweep of the Springfield Thunderbirds with a 7-1 victory in Game 2 on Friday.
The Wolf Pack, playing their first home playoff game in eight years, jumped out to a 3-0 lead with goals by Tanner Fritz, Wyatt Kalynuk and Ty Emberson in a span of 4:47 midway through the first period.
Will Bitten’s power-play goal in the final minute of the frame gave Springfield some life, but Bobby Trivigno and Blake Hillman upped the Hartford lead to 5-1 with goals early in the second.
Anton Blidh and Tim Gettinger added empty-netters for the Wolf Pack, whose 13 goals were one shy of the AHL record for a two-game playoff series.
Dylan Garand (2-0) made 19 saves in the win. Joel Hofer (0-2) stopped 28 of 33 shots for the Thunderbirds.
Hartford will take on Providence in the division semifinals.
Atlantic Division First Round (best-of-3)
A4-Springfield Thunderbirds vs. A5-Hartford Wolf Pack
Game 1 – Wed., Apr. 19 – Hartford 6, SPRINGFIELD 1 | Recap
Game 2 – Fri., Apr. 21 – HARTFORD 7, Springfield 1