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Prospect Luke Toporowski demonstrates scoring touch

Goalie Brandon Bussi, out of Western Michigan University, was among the Bruins prospects playing in Buffalo Friday.Kevin Paul Dupont

BUFFALO — Luke Toporowski suited up for the first time as a Bruin here Friday afternoon, led all his fellow rookies with a pair of goals in a 5-4 win over a bunch of Senators freshmen, and all but punched his ticket to the Black-and-Gold varsity camp that opens next week in Brighton.

Nothing catches management’s eye, or sends hopes soaring, like scoring goals.

“In minor hockey, I knew I could shoot the puck,” noted Toporowski, who hitched on with the Bruins this spring when he signed a two-year AHL deal  with Providence. “Then I made the jump to juniors, and maybe [the scoring] wasn’t there … but, yeah, it’s working right now.  And my teammates are getting me the puck. I couldn’t do it without them.”


Toporowski, 21, grew up in Bettendorf, Iowa, and signed on with WHL Spokane as a 15-year-old, setting him on what turned into a five-year junior career trail. He went undrafted as an 18-year-old, then drew scant NHL interest after his fourth year in Spokane, and finally secured his deal with the Bruins after posting 35-28—63 in a final year of junior that he split between Spokane and Kamloops.

“When it first happened, and I didn’t get drafted, I was a little bummed,” recalled Toporowski, who opened tournament play here at left wing on a line with Johnny Beecher and Marc McLaughlin, both of whom also potted a goal vs. the Senators. “But I kind of think that motivates you even more, and I think that will stick with me my whole career. It’s something I’ll always have in the back of my head.”

After the Bruins fell behind, 3-1 in the first, Toporowski cut the deficit in half at 8:35 of the second and then knocked home a power-play goal at 4:51 of the third for the 4-4 equalizer. It was Beecher, only 12 seconds after exiting the penalty box, who knocked home the winner with 2:45 remaining in regulation.


“He’s a hockey player,” said Ryan Mougenel, the Providence coach who has charge of the rookie bench here.  ‘”He’s a guy who likes the play on the inside — he’s not afraid of it.  And he doesn’t really need a second chance to score — he’s shoot first.  He really impressed me a lot. And he impressed in [July] development camp, too. Some of those competitive traits showed up with him early on.”

Fabian Lysell scores on a rebound

Speedy first-round pick Fabian Lysell scored the other goal for the Bruins with a nifty conversion of a fat rebound goalie Mads Sogaard yielded off an alert shot by former Providence Friar Mike Callahan. Lysell, McClaughlin, Beecher, and Toporowski all are expected to advance to varsity camp and likely see action in the exhibition schedule that kicks off next Saturday night in Philadelphia … Lysell lined up at right wing on a trio centered by Georgii Merkulov, ex- of Ohio State, and LW Jakub Lauko, 22, playing here in his fourth rookie camp. Lysell also saw a few shifts at right point on the power play … Brandon Bussi, who signed as a free agent in March after three years of tending the net for Western Michigan, turned back 18 shots for the win …. Free agent signee Kai Wissmann, a 6-foot-4-inch German backliner, shook off a wobbly first period and paired comfortably with Callahan for the remainder of the afternoon. Wissmann is 25, a bit old by rookie standards, and signed a one-year two-way NHL deal with the Bruins after playing seven years in Germany with the Berlin Polar Bears. He caught the eye of European scout P.J. Axelsson.  “I had a good regular season and playoffs in the DEL,” said Wissmann, who bears a close resemblance, in face and frame, to ex-Bruin blueliner Stephane Quintal. “And then I had a good tournament [with Germany] in the World Championship. And then the opportunity came to play overseas, here with Boston, and I absolutely wanted to do that.” ... The Bruins are back on the ice here Saturday, 3:30, vs Pittsburgh and will follow Sunday’s workout with a tournament-closer against the Devils Monday morning before busing back to the Hub of Hockey.


Kevin Paul Dupont can be reached at kevin.dupont@globe.com.