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Game Day Build-Up: Belleville look to build off solid effort on visit to Bridgeport

November 26, 2023

Belleville Sens Game Day Build-Up
Nov.26/23 @ Bridgeport Islanders (NHL Affiliate: New York Islanders)                      

The Set-Up:

Coming off a strong effort and an overtime loss in Hartford, the Belleville Senators (6-7-1-1) are back in action on short rest, as they continue their three-game road trip in Bridgeport, Connecticut, against the Islanders (5-11-1-0). Angus Crookshank had two points for the Sens last night and Kevin Mandolese made 40 saves, while Orrin Centazzo scored his first of the season in the defeat, Belleville’s fourth in a row. But today’s game should be evenly matched, with the Islanders also struggling of late, winning just once in their last six games and coming off a 2-1 defeat at home to Providence last night.

Previous History:

The Islanders have proven to be a tough opponent for Belleville over their franchise history. Belleville has a 4-6-0-0 record against Bridgeport, evenly split 2-3-0-0 at home and on the road, at Total Mortgage Arena. This is the first of two meetings this season between the Senators and Islanders, with the return matchup back at CAA Arena on March 16, 2024.

Roster Notes:

The only change to the Belleville lineup today will be in net, as Leevi Merilainen takes the reigns from Kevin Mandolese. Defender Donovan Sebrango has come off the injured list but won’t dress this afternoon, while Cole Reinhardt, Graham McPhee, Tarun Fizer, Tyler Boucher, Phil Daoust and Brennan Saulnier are all still hurt. Full lineup details, including this afternoon’s alignment, will be available prior to puck drop.

Who to Watch:

Belleville forward Egor Sokolov was held pointless again last night, making it the first time this season that the Sens all-time leading scorer has been held off the scoresheet in back-to-back games. He’ll likely have a chip on his shoulder coming into this afternoon’s contest. Forward Jiri Smejkal has been buzzing of late as well, with an assist last night and a couple of strong drives to the net, as he continues to adjust to the North American Style game.

The Islanders are led offensively by sophomore sniper Ruslan Ishakov. The 23-year-old has 13 points (five goals, eight assists) in 17 games so far this season, after putting up 51 points (17 goals, 24 assists) over 69 games in his rookie campaign. He was also a late addition to the Atlantic Division roster for last season’s AHL All Star Classic in Laval.

Follow the action:

Today’s game starts at 3:00 p.m. (ET) can be seen on AHL TV and heard on the Belleville Sens Entertainment Network. Pregame coverage from the Total Mortgage Arena in Bridgeport, Connecticut, begins at 2:50 p.m. (ET) with David Foot.

Ticket info:

Tickets for all Belleville Sens home games for the remainder of the 2023-24 season are now on sale online, via Ticketmaster or the Belleville Sens Ticket Hub, by visiting the Belleville Sens Box Office at the Quinte Sports & Wellness Centre, or by emailing Box Office hours are available by clicking here.

Fans can also click the following links for more information on season seat membershipsflex packsgroup experiences or Business Elite memberships, or send an email to

The full 2023-24 Belleville Senators regular season schedule can be found by clicking here.

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