PITTSBURGH (AP) – Pittsburgh PenguinsSullivan wants his highly skilled team to find comfort in playing low-scoring, one-goal games as the Stanley Cup playoffs approach.
That message was received.
Tristan Jarry made 29 saves for his first shutout of the season, andscored in the Penguins’ 1-0 victory over the Boston Bruins on Sunday. “It was a hard-fought game, and there wasn’t a lot of space out there,” Sullivan said. “You had to fight for every inch on both sides, and from that standpoint, it had a playoff feel. We knew we would fight for every inch and wanted to force (Boston) to do the same.”
Jarry has won his last four decisions, including a sloppy 7-6over New Jersey last week, in which he allowed six third-period goals. Two nights later, he rebounded against the Devils and earned a point in 11 of his previous 12 starts.
“It’s a short season, and you play many games,” Jarry said. “It’s a matter of being prepared for the next game.”
Guentzel scored his 21st at 4:03 of the third period to help the Penguins win their fourth straight.
Bryan Rust and Brian Dumoulin made plays at the blue line and along the wall to keep the puck in the zone and get it to Sidney Crosby near the goal line. Crosby set up Guentzel, who ripped a high slap shot past Jeremy Swayman’s glove from the left faceoff dot. “That was a goal scorer’s goal,” Sullivan said. “It was a great setup by (Crosby). Jake can do that for us.”
. The Penguins have 12 wins and ended in 13 of their last 16 home games against Boston, dating to March 11, 2012.
Swayman stopped 28 shots for the Bruins. They lost their second straight following a season-long. The Bruins have nine .
Swayman, thegoaltender last season for Maine, has allowed more than two goals only once in his first seven NHL starts. Swayman has stopped 82 of 84 shots in his past three appearances, including a shutout. Swayman is the fourth Boston goaltender the Penguins faced this .
“Those are crucial points, and it was a tight game all around,” Swayman said. “It’s what we’ll expect in a couple of weeks. It was a fun game to be part of, but just disappointed that we didn’t come out with the two points.”
Pittsburgh and Boston are battling for twoin a tightly contested East Division.
The Penguins, who are in sole possession of the first place, have a two-game series against the Washington Capitals after Tuesday’s home game against the Bruins. Pittsburgh’s next three games are against teams jockeying for top-four positioning in the standings.
“It’s two teams trying to fight for the playoffs just to get in,” Guentzel said. “These are two crucial points, and Tuesday is anotherone for us. We have to make sure we’re ready.”
Two of Boston’s final nine games – including Tuesday at Pittsburgh – are against teams currently holding a. Four of Boston’s last nine are against the New or Buffalo Sabres, the two bottom teams in the East Division, while the other three are at home against the fifth-place New York Rangers.
The Penguins and Bruins played a 0-0 game through two periods.
Both teams had ten shots in the first period, but Pittsburgh outshot Boston, 11-8, in the second, as the Penguins started to gain control in the later stages. Boston blocked ten shots, while the Penguins had six blocks, and neither team went on the power play in the first two periods.
Guentzel and Rust nearly tucked a puck inside the post off the rush for Pittsburgh in the second, while Jarry denied a qualityone-timer in the final minute.
“Ourwas OK,” Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said. “We didn’t manage the puck early, but we fixed that. Both teams had to work for every inch of ice out there.”