Historic season hangs by a thread.
Two Fresh Faces on the Hershey Bench, One Point in the Shootout.
It’s a running theme lately – the Bears and Stingrays have been adding new players on a weekly, sometimes daily, basis. The Goalie Shuffle has been the most visible part of this, but college players have been trickling into the lineups ever since the beginning of March. Tonight saw two new warm bodies on the Hershey bench, as well as a familiar face in Daren Machesney. The infusion of manpower for the depleted lineup was necessary, but it wasn’t quite enough to earn them the win tonight. Hershey kept pace with the visiting Syracuse Crunch for four periods, and then fell 3-2 in the shootout.
So who are these new faces? The first is Francis Verrault-Paul, most recently of McGill University (where he earned MVP honors at the Canadian Men’s University Championship, while also leading his team to the title). He made his Hershey debut tonight on the third line, working primarily with fellow rookie Garrett Mitchell and veteran Andrew Carroll.
The other brand new face in the lineup was goalie Scott Greenham, signed this morning. Like Rob Madore down in South Carolina, Greenham wrapped up his college career with University of Alaska-Fairbanks earlier in the spring and initially signed with an ECHL team – the Bakersfield Condors. He played 3 games with them, and 2 more with the Houston Aeros of the AHL.
The game itself was a collection of fits & starts, an angry first period followed by a calm second and late-game altercation involving Carroll that led to both him and Joel Rechlicz being given 10 minute misconducts and exiled to the locker room for the last 6:10 of the game.
Stats Are Stats:
Hershey Goals (That lousy Power Play? It’s getting better again!):
You’ll note that all assists came from veteran players.
Syracuse Goals (It was a good day to be named “Kyle”)
– Kyle Cumiskey (First period, 6:57), unassisted.
– Kyle Palmieri (Second period, 9:09), assisted by John Mitchell.
Since it’s Fan Appreciation Day (and the last home game of the regular season), one hopes that tomorrow’s game will have a more favorable outcome. But to be pragmatic, a point is still a lot better than none (see also: Friday Night’s Game v. the Baby Pens).