BOSTON (CBS) — The Boston Bruins weren’t at their best on Saturday afternoon. Against the Tampa Bay Lightning, that’s generally going to lead to a loss.

In this case, it has the Bruins one game away from the end of their season.

The Lightning opened up a 3-0 lead through two periods in Game 4, en route to a 3-1 victory to coincidentally take a 3-1 series lead over Boston.

Jaroslav Halak made 23 saves in the loss. Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 29 of the 30 shots he faced.

The Lightning grabbed the first lead of the game near the midway point of the first period. After Chris Wagner sent an aimless puck into the neutral zone, Brayden Point picked it up and carried it into the Bruins’ zone on a 2-on-1. Torey Krug broke up a pass headed for the front of the net, but three other Bruins got caught staring at Point, thus allowing Ondrej Palat to step into a dangerous area unobstructed.

Point fed Palat, who beat Halak from close range to give the Lightning a 1-0 lead.

The Bruins responded by controlling play for much of the first half of the second period, but they had nothing to show for it. Shortly thereafter, they had a 2-0 deficit, after Palat struck again. This time, it was a one-time blast from distance that Halak could not handle with his glove hand.

Later in the second period, Nick Ritchie committed his second penalty of the game when he delivered a late hit on Yanni Gourde from the Lightning forward’s blind side. Ritchie was assessed a five-minute major penalty, and though the Bruins killed off much of that power play, Tampa did break through with a fortunate bounce off Par Lindholm that sent the puck into the air and, eventually, into the net.

The Bruins finally got on the scoreboard themselves with a goal at the tail end of a power play seven minutes into the third period. Charlie Coyle carried the puck into the corner, drawing a pair of defenders with him before leaving a pass for Jake DeBrusk. With Ondrej Kase screening Vasilevskiy, DeBrusk fit a shot past the netminder to make it a 3-1 game.

Boston made a late push over the final minutes of the game but failed to close the gap any further.

A pregame presentation recognized the NHL’s commitment to ending racism, with a video featuring comments from Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand.

Game 5 will be played Monday night at 7 p.m. ET. If the Bruins are able to win that game, the teams will have Game 6 on Wednesday and a Game 7, if necessary, will be held on Thursday.

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