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7 Apr, 24
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BRIDGEPORT, Conn. – Austin Rueschhoff and Ty Smith spurred the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins to a 6-3 victory over the Bridgeport Islanders on Saturday night at Total Mortgage Arena.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (35-22-8-1) received a hat trick from Rueschhoff and four assists from Smith as the team racked up its fourth-straight win. The Penguins started fast and finished strong, scoring three goals in both the first and third periods.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s wicked start began with a power-play goal by Vinnie Hinostroza three minutes into the action. Moments after Hinostroza rang a wrist shot off the post, he let loose with another laser that careened off Bridgeport goalie Jakub Škarek and defenseman Seth Helgeson back into the net.

Corey Andonovski set up Evan Vierling on a two-on-one rush to put the Penguins up by two, a lead that then extended to three on another man-advantage marker courtesy of Rueschhoff. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s three opening goals came within 5:07 of game time.

Bridgeport took a positive into the first intermission by getting a tip-in tally from Daylan Kuefler with 2:35 left in the first period.

William Dufour brought the Islanders within one with a bar-down snipe from the slot at 12:11 of the second stanza.

Rueschhoff’s second of the night got the Penguins off and running in the third period, taking a pretty dish from Hinostroza and Smith and launching a shot past Ken Appleby, who replaced Škarek halfway through the middle frame. Three and a half minutes later, Jagger Joshua redirected a blast from Xavier Ouellet to put Wilkes-Barre/Scranton ahead, 5-2.

Bridgeport caught lightning in a bottle again when a pinballing puck went to Matthew Maggio, who flicked it past a sprawling Ludovic Waeber at the midway mark of the third period. However, Rueschhoff reestablished his club’s three-goal edge and capped off the hat trick with an empty netter.

Waeber earned his first win as a Penguin by making 17 saves. Škarek logged 13 saves on 16 shots, but Appleby ultimately took the loss with 14 saves on 16 shots faced in relief.

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton is back at it tomorrow, Sunday, Apr. 7, as it closes out its three-in-three weekend at home against the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. Tomorrow’s game is also a Kids Free Sunday presented by Knoebels. Children aged 14 and under can attend the game for free with the purchase of an adult ticket. The first 1,000 children through the doors will also receive a $5 ride book from Knoebels.

Game time for Sunday is 3:05 p.m. at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza.

Individual-game tickets for the remaining contests in the Penguins’ 25th season as well as season-ticket packages for the 2024-25 campaign are on sale now. Full-Season, 22-game, 12-game, Flexbook and Premium Seating plans are available by reaching out to the Penguins directly at (570) 208-7367. Individual-game tickets are also available by visiting, the Mohegan Sun Arena Box Office or calling the Penguins’ front office at (570) 208-7367.

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