Bears Power Past Marlies for Game 1 Win

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Posted May 20, 2016

(via the Bears)

The Hershey Bears scored three goals to jump out to a 1-0 series lead in the Eastern Conference Finals against the Toronto Marlies. Carter Camper extended his point-streak to seven games with the tying goal while Justin Peters finished with 19 saves on 20 shots.

Given the odd format of the series and arena availability, the Bears opened the series at home despite being the lower seed. They will host Game 2 as well, but then will play four of the next six at Ricoh Coliseum in Toronto.

In a give-and-go with the Finnish Kasperi Kapanen, Swedish William Nylander drove across Peters and roofed a backhand over his sprawling body. The No. 8 overall pick in 2014’s draft now has his third of the playoffs, half as many as he had over 22 games with the Maple Leafs.

The first period ended with the Marlies leading in shots on goal by a mere 7-5 margin. The Bears opened up the second with multiple good shifts in the offensive zone, generating about a minute of time around Antoine Bibeau‘s crease before tying the game.

Bears defender Erik Burgdoerfer circled the zone to throw the puck back in the slot for a falling Nathan Walker to backhand at the net. Bibeau turned it aside, but Aaron Ness flipped it back to Dustin Gazley for another chance. After pinballing around, the puck made its way to Camper at center point to blow it by Bibeau’s blocker.

The second period ended in a controversy as Ryan Stanton backhanded a shot past Bibeau right as the horn sounded to end the period. Though replay showed that the green light did not go on by the time the puck crossed the line, referee Terry Koharski waved it off given the angle he had in the penalty box.

The Bears eventually got that second goal from Liam O’Brien, his second of these playoffs. Captain Garrett Mitchell worked the puck to O’Brien at the bottom of the right circle. Bibeau did not stay on the post, and that’s where O’Brien beat him with Viktor Loov draped on his back.

Josh Leivo tripped up Chris Bourque in the offensive zone to give the Bears their fourth and final power play. Zach Sill converted from right in front of Bibeau.

Mark Arcobello hit the end boards hard enough to bounce back early on in the third period. His status for the next game is uncertain.

Game 2 will be tomorrow night from GIANT Center.