Thunderbirds Take Flight, Defeat Bears, 4-2

Posted December 1, 2018

Hershey starts strong but unable to finish as they lose 4-2 to Springfield.  Nathan Walker scores twice for his 9th career multi goal game.

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The Springfield Thunderbirds (11-6-0-2) come to Hershey (9-11-0-1) for their second of three games at the Giant Center this season.  First time here, the Bears defeated the Thunderbirds 3-2 with Ilya Samsonov collecting 31 saves on 33 shots.  All three goals for Hershey came from the power play that evening while their penalty kill went a perfect 6 for 6.  Hershey will face Springfield a total six games throughout the season.

With the long term injury to Kris Bindulis, the Bears signed ECHL defensemen Jake Linhart to a professional try out.  Previously, Linhart was playing for the Adirondack Thunder where he scored 11 points (two goals, nine assists) in 19 games.  He will get the start his first ever AHL game as he gets paired with Aaron Ness.


1st Period:

Hershey came out of the locker room with fury in their eyes.  Just 50 seconds into the game, Nathan Walker would score on the Bears fourth shot of the game.  The puck was thrown on net from the boards and slipped past Samuel Montembeault, which he will want back.

Things got nasty as big hits were being thrown around by both teams.  Nathan Walker answered the call from fan favorite Bobby Farnham, giving the fans the first fight of the game.  Later that period, Liam O’Brien and Ryan Horvat exchanged numbers and a danced away from the play.  Both fights are below:

The period ended with a flurry of shots from Hershey, some even on a 5 on 3 man advantage but Montembeault made save after save to keep the game 1-0 after the first period.

1st Period Shots: HER – 12, SPR – 3

1st Period Scoring:

:50 – HERNathan Walker(3) ASST: Aaron Ness(6)


2nd Period:

Springfield changed their game plan in the locker room and it seemed to work.  The Bears had miscommunication at the blue line behind the play which led to Anthony Greco to sneak behind them for an easy breakaway goal. Springfield would tie the game 1-1.

The very next shot on net also went in as Blaine Byron was left alone in the slot to put home an easy give and go that beat Samsonov blocker side and just like that, Springfield took a 2-1 lead.

Hershey answered when Nathan Walker tipped the puck past Samuel Montembeault a few minutes later.  Riley Barber would shoot the puck at the point  after a face-off win.  This was Walker’s second goal of the game and his 9th career multi goal game.  The last one came against Springfield as well.

Springfield would take control of the game, causing Hershey to turn the puck over time and time again on clearing attempts.  Absolute chaos occurred in front of Samsonov after players attempted to keep hitting each other instead of clearing the puck out of the zone.  The puck landed near Thunderbirds forward Jacob MacDonald as he threw the puck past Samsonov who had no idea where the puck was (along with everyone else).  This would give Springfield a 3-2 lead going into the second intermission.

2nd Period Shots: HER – 9, SPR – 6

2nd Period Scoring:

1:36 – SPRAnthony Greco(8) ASST: Henrik Borgstrom(14)

2:16 – SPRBlaine Byron(5) ASST: Jayce Hawryluk(15)

6:56 – HERNathan Walker(4) ASST: Riley Barber(8), Mike Sgarbossa(6)

10:08 – SPRJacob MacDonald(7) ASST: Joel Lowry(12), Harry Zolnierczyk(14)


3rd Period:

Hershey had trouble getting themselves back into the game.  Springfield clamped down on defense and did not allow Hershey to enter offensive zone very easy.  Just over the half way point of the period, Anthony Greco raced Colby Williams down the ice and out muscled him to win the puck.  Greco got the edge while crashing the net and the puck slipped past Samsonov for Springfield’s fourth goal of the game.  This ended up being the dagger in the back that would send Springfield home with a victory.

Thunderbirds would defeat the Bears 4-2.


3rd Period Shots: HER – 6, SPR – 7

Overall Shots: HER – 25, SPR – 18


3rd Period Scoring:

11:03 – SPRAnthony Greco(9) ASST: Ryan Horvat(3), Ian McCoshen(4)


Three Stars:

  1. SPR: Anthony Greco – 2 Goals
  2. HER: Nathan Walker – 2 Goals
  3. SPR: Jacob MacDonald – 1 Goal


Box Score:


Tonight’s photos are brought to you by Lauren Gettel!  You can follow her on Instagram: @laurengettel_photography and on Facebook at @laurengettelphotography.