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Monarchs' climb gets tougher with Sunday loss to Providence


There's still time to qualify for the American Hockey League playoffs, but Manchester didn't help its cause over the weekend.

For the second straight game, the Monarchs couldn't generate offense, falling to Atlantic Division-leading Providence, 3-1, at the Dunkin' Donuts Center on Sunday.

Manchester (29-26-3-4) is in 10th place in the Eastern Conference with 65 points. Manchester, with 14 games left, is tied for ninth with Albany and is three points behind seventh-place teams Hershey and Connecticut. The top eight teams qualify for the conference playoffs.

"We actually played fairly well," said Monarchs head coach Mark Morris. "The result wasn't great but I felt we competed a lot harder and tried to execute the details of the game."

Manchester opened the three-game weekend with a 3-2 home win against Bridgeport on Friday. On Saturday, the Monarchs were 0-for-7 on the power play and lost 3-0 to the host Whale.

Manchester tied the game Sunday with a goal by center Jordan Weal at 12:48 of the second period.

Center Ryan Spooner regained the lead (2-1) for the Bruins with a goal at 19:58 of the second period. Graham Mink made it 3-1 in the third period. The Bruins' first-period tally was from Maxime Suave.

Monarchs goaltender Jean-Francois Berube, making his first start since April 11, 2010, stopped 34 shots.

The Monarchs play next on Wednesday at Springfield.

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