An Evgeny Kuznetsov autographed puck. A Dave Martinez autographed baseball. A Markieff Morris...
Bears Fall to Icehogs In OT, 4-3 (Photos)
Hershey comes into the game with a 5 game winning streak. This was after a huge losing skid and losing forward Chris Bourque to the Olympics for a few weeks. He will make his return next weekend.
Rockford on the other hand are coming into this game on a skid for themselves. In the last ten games, they are 2-7-1.
Vitek Vanecek would get the start for the Bears.
This is the first time these two teams face off against each other this season. Each team with nothing to lose at this point of the season, made sure they got to know each other pretty quick.
Rockford come out with fast skating and huge hits. This would also set the tone for the Icehogs but it would also bring some penalties their way. Rockford comes into the game 30th in both the power play and penalty kill but you wouldn’t know that by the way they showed up tonight.
Rockford would open the scoring, short handed off of a beautiful pass from John Hayden that was tapped home back door from Matthew Highmore. This would be Highmore’s 21st goal of the season.
The period ended with a rare fight from the Aussie, Nathan Walker. He was trying to start some energy for his team and the crowd at the Giant Center. The Hershey Bears allowed 20 shots, the most they have allowed in any period this season.
1st Period Scoring:
RFD Goal: 12:35 – Matthew Highmore (21), Assist(s): John Hayden (9) (SH)
1st Period Shots: RFD – 20, HER 7
Hershey got off to a bad start, taking two straight penalties in the first five minutes of the period. Luckily for them, the Icehogs have a bad power play and the Bears were able to kill of both of them.
The Bears finally cracked the scoreboard when Liam O’Brien found the back of the net. It started when he landed a big check that caused a turnover, and Zach Sill picked up the puck and gave it back to O’Brien for a small breakaway that he capitalized on.
Rockford answered back when William Pelletier scored on the power play. This is the second time this game that Rockford’s biggest weakness turned around against Hershey tonight.
Rockford dominated the period when it came to puck possession and shots on net. If it wasn’t for Vitek Vanecek, this game could have already been over.
2nd Period Scoring:
HER Goal: 13:25 – Liam O’Brien (14), Assist(s): Zach Sill (10)
RFD Goal: 17:46 – William Pelletier (8), Assist(s): Adam Clendening (18), Luc Snuggerud (7) (PP)
2nd Period Shots: RFD 14 – HER 3
This is the period that Rockford started showing their regular form on special teams. Travis Boyd scored on the power play from a missed play at the blue line from the Icehogs. Joe Whitney found Boyd and that sprung a two on one. Boyd made no mistakes buying the puck to even the score 2-2.
Before the fans could even get excited about being tied in a game where they were badly outshot, William Pelletier of the Icehogs sniped Vanecek taking all the energy out of the stadium and giving Rockford the lead once again.
The Icehogs found themselves on the penalty kill for the third time this period with a too many men bench minor. This would be costly because Riley Barber scored his 18th goal of the season. With the game tied three-three, we headed to overtime.
3rd Period Scoring:
HER Goal: 6:35 – Travis Boyd (15), Assist(s): Joe Whitney (16), Nathan Walker (9) (PP)
RFD Goal: 7:45 – William Pelletier (9), Assist(s): Chris DiDomenico (11)
HER Goal: 14:53 – Riley Barber (18), Assist(s): Joe Whitney (17), Travis Boyd (28) (PP)
3rd Period Shots: RFD – 4, HER – 4
After a game of cat and mouse and playing keep away, the controversy set in when Riley Barber looked like he had a breakaway but was dragged down from behind. This caused a two on one going the other direction, and John Hayden scored the game winning goal with 3:14 left in overtime.
RFD Goal: 1:46 – John Hayden (5), Assist(s): Chris DiDomenico (12)
Overtime Shots: RFD – 2, HER – 0
Total Shots: RFD -40, HER -14
Three Stars of the Game:
- RFD – John Hayden – 1 Goal (GWG), 1 Assist
- RFD – William Pelletier – 2 Goals
- HER – Vitek Vanecek – 36 Saves on 40 Shots
Bears get lucky enough to go home with one point, but they weren’t good enough for two as the Icehogs take this game in overtime 4.3.
Hershey will have to shake this one off by tomorrow as they travel to Wilkes-Barre to face the Penguins on Sunday.
BOX SCORE: HERE
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