BOSTON — The Boston Bruins have been pushed to the brink of elimination.
The Ottawa Senators emerged victorious in Game 4 of their first-round Stanley Cup playoff series against the B’s on Wednesday night at TD Garden thanks to a third-period goal from forward Bobby Ryan. Ryan also scored the overtime winner in Game 3.
The Senators now lead the series 3-1 and can end the Bruins’ season with a Game 5 victory in Ottawa on Friday night.
Here’s how it all went down.
Denna Laing was the Bruins’ honorary banner captain before Game 4.
Bruins defenseman Colin Miller made his return to the lineup on the third pairing alongside John-Michael Liles. Miller left Game 1 after a knee-on-knee collision and missed Game 2 and Game 3 with a lower body injury.
EARLY GOALIE DUEL
The Bruins controlled most of the play early in the first period, and nearly opened the scoring on a breakaway, but Sens goalie Craig Anderson saved Brad Marchand’s shot with a clutch save.
Soon after Anderson’s denial, Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask made a save on an Erik Karlsson breakaway scoring chance.
Anderson would deny Marchand again on a partial breakaway with an aggressive poke check.
The Ottawa netminder also stopped a 3-on-1 rush for the Bruins with under a minute to play in the period. It was his 12th and final save of the frame.
Rask tallied 14 saves in the opening period, one that was defined by strong goaltending.
The Bruins scored shortly after the midway point of the second period when Noel Acciari redirected a Charlie McAvoy shot from the point into the net. However, the play was reviewed and replays showed the play clearly was offside, which nullified the goal.
The weather is getting warmer in Boston, but a beach ball at a hockey game? This referee found a clever way to clean it up, if only for a few moments.
Even David Pastrnak took a few seconds to play with it during a stoppage.
This beach ball was really the only notable thing from an otherwise lackluster second period. Neither team tallied 10 shots in the frame and both power plays came up empty.
SENS BREAK THE TIE
Rask came up clutch again for the Bruins just 2:50 into the third period with a nice pad save to deny the Senators on a 2-on-1 rush. It was one of many exciting end-to-end rushes as both teams opened the frame with tremendous energy.
The Senators finally broke through when Ryan jammed a loose puck into the B’s net to give Ottawa a 1-0 lead. It was his third goal of the series and second in as many games.
Karlsson and Derick Brassard picked up the assists.
Soon after Ottawa took the lead, the Bruins went 12:58 without a shot on goal. The Bruins were then put on the penalty kill for having too many men on the ice late in the period, and it ended with just 2:10 left in regulation.
The Bruins pulled Rask for the extra attacker with under a minute to play but couldn’t find the tying goal.
The Bruins and Senators resume their Round 1 series Friday night in Ottawa for Game 5. Puck drop from Canadian Tire Centre is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. ET.
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images