Bears Defeat Senators In Shootout, 3-2

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Posted February 3, 2019

Vitek Vanecek had 27 saves in the victory.  Hershey continues their point streak to 9 games (8-0-0-1).  All photos in this post are courtesy of Just Sports Photography.

For live updates of all Hershey Bears home games, follow Cory Lyons on Twitter at @CoryLyonsAHL.

 

The Hershey Bears (22-20-0-3) host the Belleville Senators (20-23-2-2) at the Giant Center.  The Bears are hot of late, going 7-0-0-1 in their last eight games.  Their only loss was to the Lehigh Valley Phantoms, who they defeated last night with the score of 2-1.

Current Belleville Senators Head Coach Tory Mann and Assistant Coach Ryan Murphy return to Hershey for the first time since leaving the Bears.  Mann was 162-102-22-18 as the Head Coach of the Bears, leading them to a Calder Cup Final in 2016.

Earlier in the morning, the Washington Capitals sent Christian Djoos down to Hershey for a long-term injury conditioning assignment.  Djoss was hurt on December 11th while playing for the Capitals.  He is expected to play just a few games before being sent back to Washington.  He replaces Joey Leach who was hurt the night before from blocking a shot against the Lehigh Valley Phantoms.

 

1st Period:

Hershey controlled the puck early and often in the Belleville zone but the Bears first goal was started in the defensive zone.  Liam O’Brien blocked a shot which sprung Shane Gerisch on a breakaway.  Gersich had no problem putting the puck between Filip Gustavsson’s legs and giving Hershey an early 1-0 lead.

Belleville answered back and quickly.  While on the power play, Beck Malenstyn turned the puck over while trying to clear it down the ice.  Jack Rodewald found himself alone in front of Vitek Vanecek.  Vanecek saved the first shot but could not handle the rebound.  Rodewald scored his 16th goal all by himself and tied the game 1-1.

The Bears struck again on the transition up the ice.  Steve Whitney and Mike Sgarbossa had some nice give and go action that turned the Senators defender Justin Falk inside out.  Sgarbossa found himself alone with Gustavsson and scoring his 21st goal this season.  Hershey took a 2-1 lead going into the locker room.

 

1st Period Shots: HER – 9, BEL – 6

 

1st Period Scoring:

7:11 – HERShane Gersich(6) ASST: Liam O’Brien(8)

9:48 – BEL: Jack Rodewald(16) ASST: None(PP)

10:43 – HERMike Sgarbossa(21) ASST: Steve Whitney(5), Connor Hobbs(14)

 

2nd Period:

The period was dominated with penalties throughout the period.  The best chances for both teams came while short handed but both Vanecek and Gustavsson held down their forts and keep the game at 2-1.

 

2nd Period Shots: HER – 11, BEL – 8

 

2nd Period Scoring:

N/A

 

3rd Period:

The Senators jumped on the Bears as soon as the puck dropped for the third period.  Belleville hit the post and with the puck which lead to a big scramble in front of Vanecek.  Vanecek made one more save before allowing the puck to get past him and Belleville to tied the game.  Drake Batherson scored his 10th goal of the season and put the score at 2-2.

The period landed its fair share of penalties but none bigger than Nathan Walker receiving a five minute major for kneeing with just over 3:30 left to play in the period.  This was also a match penalty and ejected Walker for the rest of the game.  Hershey did kill off part of the penalty to finish the period and Vitek Vanecek was the one to thank.  Several key saves kept this game tied 2-2 and sent it into overtime.

 

3rd Period Shots:  HER – 13, BEL – 11

 

3rd Period Scoring:

1:00 – BELDrake Batherson(10) ASST: Christian Wolanin(16), Logan Brown(13)

 

Overtime:

The Bears had to kill off 1:30 seconds of the 5 minute major that Nathan Walker took in the third period.  Belleville had several chances on the 4 on 3 advantage but Vitek Vanecek stood his ground.

Hershey had their chance to end the game with just 5 seconds left to play when Ryan Sproul had a one timer miss the open net.

The game went into a shootout.

 

Overtime Shots: HER – 2, BEL – 4

 

Overtime Scoring:

N/A

 

Shootout:

 

HER: Riley Barber – O

BEL: Logan Brown – X

HER: Mike Sgarbossa – X

BEL: Drake Batherson – X

HER: Shane Gersich – X

BEL: Aaron Luchuk – X

 

 

Hershey wins 3-2 over Belleville in a shootout!

 

Three Stars:

  1. HER – Vitek Vanecek (27 saves, win)
  2. BEL – Filip Gustavsson (33 saves)
  3. HER – Mike Sgarbossa (1 goal)

 

Official Box Score: https://theahl.com/stats/game-summary/1019049

 

Photos courtesy of Just Sports Photography: