ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Matthew Poitras scored his first two NHL goals in the third period and the Boston Bruins beat the Anaheim Ducks 3-1 Sunday for their season-opening fifth straight win.
The 19-year-old Poitras, playing in his fifth career game, scored at 6:29 of the final period to erase the Ducks’ lead and then got the go-ahead goal nearly 4 minutes later when he stuffed home the rebound of Jake DeBrusk’s shot.
Brad Marchand added an empty-net goal and Linus Ullmark made 32 saves as the Bruins remained one of three undefeated teams along with Vegas and Colorado. Marchand extended his points streak to five games while David Pastrnak saw his four-game goal-scoring streak come to an end.
“It was a good win and we just kind of stayed together and stuck with it,” Poitras said. “It was maybe not our best, but we were able to get the job done.”
Mason McTavish scored the lone goal for the Ducks, who lost their third straight and fourth in five games this season. John Gibson made 25 saves.
Anaheim lost despite a 31-26 advantage in shots on goal, but Ducks coach Greg Cronin hardly was satisfied. Cronin said his team should have put at least 40 shots on goal, if not more, in a refrain of what he has been preaching in the early part of the season.
“At this point, it’s going to be like a value system,” said Cronin, who insisted that simple math says more shots on goal will yield more goals. “We’re going to just shoot pucks. I don’t care if it’s from the (opposite) goal line. Just put them at the goalie’s pads.”
The Ducks were the first to break through in the scoreless game as McTavish scored on a rush with Ryan Strome at 5:05 of the third period. Strome’s shot on Ullmark rebounded into the slot and McTavish got enough on his shot to slide in the goal off the left post for his second of the season.
Poitras needed just 1:24 to even the score when he took a centering pass from Morgan Geekie from the left side of goal and scored out front past Gibson, who was late to get back into position from the left post. It was a goal Poitras said he had been dreaming about, “my whole life, really.”
“Especially a lot more the last couple of weeks and knowing that I’m playing here.” Poitras said. “Maybe I was a little tired at the start of the third (period) but to see that one go in, it felt great.”
Piotras was later in perfect position when DeBrusk’s shot rebounded off Gibson’s chest. Piotras cleaned up the loose puck for his second goal and a 2-1 advantage at 10:20.
Marchand’s fourth goal of the season came with 2:34 remaining after the Ducks pulled Gibson for an extra skater.
The Bruins missed a prime chance to take an early lead on DeBrusk’s short-handed breakaway just over a minute into the game, but his shot on Gibson hit the left post. DeBrusk returned to action after being held out from Saturday’s victory over Los Angeles for being late to a meeting.
Boston had a 13-8 advantage on shots in the first period, while Anaheim forced the issue in the second period with a 10-4 advantage.
“I have a lot of faith in my boys in front of me, making the right plays and keeping their guys to the outside” Ullmark said. “That’s what we have to do. … We did all the things in the right way there in the third when we had the lead.”
Bruins forward Trent Federic went to the locker room late in the second period after he absorbed a hip check from the Ducks’ Radko Gudas in the lower abdomen.
Bruins defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk made his return to Anaheim and received a short tribute video in the first period after playing the previous three seasons in Anaheim.
Ducks rookie Leo Carlsson was an observer Sunday as a healthy scratch following a road game Saturday against Arizona. Carlsson, the No. 2 overall selection in this year’s NHL Draft, made his NHL debut Thursday and scored a goal on his first career shot against Dallas. He did not register a point in 22 minutes against the Coyotes. The Ducks are expected to keep the 18-year-old forward on a moderate early workload as he adapts to the NHL.
Bruins: At Chicago on Tuesday night to finish a four-game trip.
Ducks: At Columbus on Tuesday night to open a four-game trip.