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Bears Week 3 Recap: Winning!
The Hershey Bears returned this week to what has become ubiquitous with their franchise in their 80-year existence: Winning.
In a three-in-three of one goal games, the Bears won the final two games of the week against Providence and Hartford. Connor Hobbs and Lucas Johansen factored on both wins, scoring their first professional goals.
Prior to the week, forward Chandler Stephenson got his first call-up to Washington this season. Hours before puck-drop against Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Anthony Peluso got his call to the NHL as well, joining the Capitals mid-way through their Western Canada road trip.
Hershey went zero-for-seven on their power play against the Penguins, while Wilkes-Barre scored on the last of their three chances to escape Mohegan Sun Arena with a 3-2 win.
Jeremy Langlois and Riley Barber scored their first goals of the season for Hershey. Langlois burned the Penguins power-play unit, scoring shorthanded past Tristan Jarry in the second period. Barber, who had chances at every turn fall for naught in every prior game, finally got his first goal on a one-timer set up by Lucas Johansen.
Dominik Simon buried the Hershey comeback hopes, capitalizing on a puck that Hubert Labrie blocked seconds earlier.
Adam Carlson stopped 24 shots, many catching the Penguins by complete surprise. Jarry stopped 30 of 32 in the fifth win for his club.
For the first time since the 2017 Calder Cup playoffs, Hershey welcomed the Providence Bruins to the GIANT Center. Hobbs scored one of three power-play goals for his first professional goal on the way to a 3-2 win.
Liam O’Brien on a redirection and Travis Boyd on a chip-in accounted for the other Bears goals.
The Hershey penalty kill unit went six-for-seven, helping starter Parker Milner get his first AHL win this season with 18 saves.
Carlson stopped 33 shots the next night, helping Hershey to a 4-3 decision over the Hartford Wolf Pack. Four different Bears — Travis Boyd, Chris Bourque, Wayne Simpson, and Colby Williams — got two points on the night.
Simpson and Bourque sandwhiched a goal from Hartford’s Steven Fogarty to end the first period up 2-1. Boyd assisted on both goals, bringing his total up to eight helpers this season.
Another player in his first professional season, 2016 first-rounder Lucas Johansen, got his first pro goal on a power-play slapshot in the second period. Hershey went two-for-eight with the man-advantage.
Garrett Mitchell and Ryan Graves dropped gloves near the end of the second period. The 6-foot-4 Graves had the 5-foot-11 Mitchell bent over, but as both players lost balance, Mitchell shifted his wieght and came out on top with Graves crashing to the ice.
Fogarty pulled Hartford back within one early in the third, only to see O’Brien give Hershey the two-goal lead again halfway through the stanza.
Graves tallied the final goal on a 6-on-4 power-play with 17 seconds left in the game. Hartford could not complete the comeback, and the Bears got out of town with two wins on the weekend.
Following the games this weekend, Hershey announced a few roster moves. Goaltender Parker Milner and defenseman Kris Bindulis were re-assigned to ECHL South Carolina, while defenseman Paul Geiger was recalled to Hershey.
Geiger has one goal in four games with the South Carolina Stingrays and played 49 games with the Rochester Americans last season.
Bindulis played just one game for Hershey, October 22 against Rockford. Milner went 1-4-0-1 in his six starts with Hershey.
Geiger has a chance to face his former team immediately, as the Bears travel to Rochester for a Friday night date with the Americans.
It is right back to Pennsylvania to host the Toronto Marlies, then back to Mohegan Sun Arena to see the Penguins again.
This is the third three-in-three in a row for Hershey, and they will not have another until December 1-3.