Bears Fall 3-1, Giving Checkers 3-0 Series Lead

Posted May 7, 2019

Charlotte scores late in the third period to win the game.  Hershey’s power play goes zero for six and continues to struggle.  Checkers lead the series 3-0.


Follow Cory Lyons on Twitter @CoryLyonsAHL for live updates of the Hershey Bears on their quest for a 12th Calder Cup!


The Hershey Bears travel back home to the Giant Center to square off against the Charlotte Checkers.  In this best of seven series, the Checkers lead two games to none.  In game one, Charlotte defeated Hershey 4-1 while in game two the Checkers exploded on offense with a 7-3 victory.  The Checkers improved to 43-0 this season when leading after two periods of play.

Mike Sgarbossa, who has not played since game five of the first round against Bridgeport is still out on injury.  Ilya Samsonov who played in game two did not dress in game 3.  Parker Milner sat on the bench as Vitek Vanecek’s backup.

Axel Jonsson-Fjallby returned from Sweden prior to game three but did not dress for the Hershey Bears.  Jonsson-Fjallby started the season for Hershey and played in sixteen games.  During that time he collected two goals and one assist for three points.


1st Period:

Both teams entered the arena with something to prove.  Hershey does not want to drop three straight games and put themselves in danger of losing the series while Charlotte wanted nothing more than to close out this series sooner than later.

Vitek Vanecek had to make three great saves early in the game to keep the game tied.

Late in the period, Nathan Walker scored his first goal of the playoffs.  Walker tipped the puck off of Ryan Sproul’s shot to give Hershey a 1-0 lead.  The Bears went into the locker room with that score.



1st Period Shots: HER – 11, CHA – 7


1st Period Scoring:

18:56 – HER: Nathan Walker(1) ASST: Ryan Sproul(1), Jayson Megna(4)


2nd Period:

Charlotte took over the second period, even when down a man.  Their penalty kill did not allow Hershey to enter the zone all period.

Early in the period, Aleksi Saarela showed why his shot is dangerous.  When Saarela entered the zone, he threw what looked like a simple shot on net but the puck turned into a rocket and beat Vanecek short side.  This tied the game at 1-1.


Hershey got into penalty trouble late in the period.  Colby Williams took a tripping penalty and Beck Malenstyn took a roughing penalty while killing Charlotte’s power play.  It took efforts from Aaron Ness, Jayson Megna and Nathan Walker and their blocked shots to kill off both penalties and head to the locker room tied 1-1.


2nd Period Shots: HER – 2, CHA – 12

2nd Period Scoring:

6:32 – CHA: Aleksi Saarela(2) ASST: Andrew Poturalski(6), Morgan Geekie(3)


3rd Period:

Hershey was reward with power play time for six straight minutes in the third period but only mustered up two shots.  It took Charlotte until 2:15 to get their first shot on goal.  Vanecek had to stop a break away then stopped one rebound but unfortunately could not stop the third shot of the period.  Stelio Mattheos tapped home the puck into the empty net.


With less than a minute left, Aleksi Saarela scored his second of the night with the net being empty.


Charlotte defeated Hershey 3-1 and lead the series 3-0.


3rd Period Shots: HER – 5, CHA – 4

Overall Shots: HER – 18, CHA – 23


3rd Period Scoring:

17:52 – CHA: Stelio Mattheos(2) ASST: Trevor Carrick(3)

19:03 – CHA: Aleksi Saarela(3) ASST: Andrew Poturalski(7)(EN)


Three Stars:

  1. CHA – Stelio Mattheos – GWG
  2. HER – Nathan Walker – 1 Goal
  3. CHA – Alex Nedeljkovic – 17 Saves, Win


Official Box Score:


All photos in this post are courtesy of Cory Lyons.  You can follow him on Twitter @CoryLyonsAHL or Instagram @CoryLyonsPhoto.