Update from the Den – Hershey’s New Year’s Resolution – No More Injuries!

zach-sanford-hershey-bears-goal-scored

The Hershey Bears rounded out 2016 with four games between Monday and Saturday, securing five of a possible eight points. Hershey’s Christian Thomas contributed six-points while Chandler Stephenson (5), Liam O’Brien (4), and Chris Bourque (4) also added multiple points on the week. 

The Bears returned to Hershey Monday morning for a skate before heading out to Lehigh Valley where they defeated their Atlantic Division and in-state rival 5-2.

After falling behind in the first period, the Bears scored three straight goals to open the second period. Bourque, Travis Boyd, and Paul Carey each scored to give the Bears the 3-1 lead before the Phantoms tacked on their final goal.

carey

Paul Carey races up the ice in Saturday’s loss to Providence.

Bourque’s eighth goal of the season put him at 499 points in a Hershey uniform – he would get 500 on an assist in Wednesday night’s game.

53 seconds after Bourque’s goal, which was assisted by Stephenson and Garrett Mitchell, Travis Boyd scored his 10th goal of the season with a one-timer on the power play. Christian Djoos and O’Brien recorded the assists.

Then Carey extended his point-scoring streak to 19, which is tied for third in Hershey’s record books. He deflected Aaron Ness’s shot into the net. Stephenson notched his second assist on the play.

stephenson-and-sill

Zach Sill (left) and Chandler Stephenson (right) discuss options.

In the third, Hershey got two insurance goals. Christian Thomas scored his 13th of the season when he deflected Ryan Bourque’s shot into the goal. Zach Sill notched the game’s final goal at 14:02 to give Hershey the victory.

Vitek Vanecek, the game’s number 3 star, stopped 23 of 25 shots. Carey was the second star. In a strange move, Lehigh Valley’s Andy Miele was named the game’s first star despite the 5-2 loss and only recording one point.

cannata-save

Vitek Vanecek earned third star honors twice in three appearances in Hershey’s four games this week.

After the game ended, Lehigh Valley’s Will O’Neill was assessed a match penalty for punching Hershey’s Darren Dietz, breaking the defenseman’s nose. Dietz missed the game in Syracuse, but returned to the ice Friday night with a full face shield as the Bears lost Madison Bowey Wednesday night in Syracuse.

dietz-mask-close

Darren Dietz suffered a broken nose at Lehigh Valley, but was back on the ice sporting a full-face shield.

In a freak accident, Bowey suffered a cut to an ankle tendon. Per Hershey staff, Bowey had surgery in Syracuse and is now on crutches. He is not expected to play until April.

The loss of Bowey and Dietz did not deter the Bears in Syracuse as they went into overtime before the Crunch scored the game-winning goal to hand the Bears a 3-2 loss.

Syracuse notched two shorthanded goals to start the game. Those goals came within 26 seconds of each other, but Hershey battled back. Mitchell deflected Tyler Lewington’s shot past Adam Wilcox late in the first period.

Then, Thomas scored his 14th goal of the season on the power play with Bourque picking up an assist for his 500th point with Hershey, but it wasn’t enough as the Crunch got the game-winner 3:01 into overtime.

bourque

Chris Bourque is the latest player in Hershey history to score 500 points with the club.

Vanecek stopped 25 of 28 shots and once again earned third star honors.

Hershey then returned to Giant Center Friday night to host the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. After a slow start, the Bears scored four powerplay goals en route to the 6-2 victory.

Stephenson scored 70 seconds into the game, but the Sound Tigers scored back to back goals to take a 2-1 lead before Hershey scored five unanswered goals through the final two periods.

O’Brien scored a pair of power play goals, while teammates Galiev and Thomas also scored on the man-advantage. Brad Malone tacked on an even strength goal in the middle of the scoring onslaught for the Hershey victory.

liam

Liam O’Brien waits on the doorstep for the puck.

O’Brien, who also assisted on Stephenson’s goal, was named the game’s first star for his three-point performance. Stephenson (1G, 1A) and Galiev (1G, 1A) were also honored for their performances.

Late in the game though, Hershey’s defense suffered another blow as a puck hit Christian Djoos in the mouth. The defenseman immediately rushed off the ice and down the tunnel. It was later disclosed that he had three teeth knocked out. With the additional injury leaving the Bears with just five healthy defensemen, Hershey placed a call to South Carolina and signed Colton Saucerman to a PTO.

dsc_0044

Colton Saucerman, Hershey’s newest addition, sports a beard reminiscent of former SC goalie Mark Dekanich, who played one game in goal for Hershey last season.

Saucerman, a 24-year old from Colorado Springs, made his AHL debut against the AHL’s hottest team, the Providence Bruins in a New Year’s Eve match-up. But the spotlight belonged to Malcolm Subban as the goalie came up huge in net for Providence as the Bruins emerged with a 4-1 victory.

Zach Sanford scored Hershey’s only goal of the evening as the Bruins jumped ahead of Hershey in the Atlantic Division standings. Hershey finished 2016 in fourth place with some work to do in 2017.

Hershey’s powerplay was 7 for 24 while the penalty kill was an astonishing 20 for 22.

Hershey travels to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Friday night before returning to Giant Center to host Utica Saturday at 7:00 and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Sunday at 5:00.

# Name Games played Goals Assists +/- Shots Pen Min.
2 Tyler Lewington 4 0 2 0 5 7
4 Madison Bowey 1 0 0 0 0 0
5 Christian Djoos 3 0 2 -2 3 0
7 Darren Dietz 3 0 0 +2 2 2
10 Dustin Gazley 0
11 Zach Sill 4 1 1 -2 2 0
12 Nathan Walker 4 0 0 -3 5 0
13 Jakub Vrana 0
14 Ryan Bourque 2 0 1 0 0 4
15 Travis Boyd 4 1 1 -1 3 0
17 Chris Bourque 4 1 3 0 17 4
18 Christian Thomas 4 3 3 +1 11 2
19 Riley Barber 0
20 Liam O’Brien 4 2 2 -1 7 13
21 Chandler Stephenson 4 1 4 +1 5 2
22 Stanislav Galiev 3 1 2 +2 3 4
23 Zach Sanford 3 1 1 -2 10 6
24 Brad Malone 4 1 0 +1 7 18
25 Colby Williams 4 0 0 -3 2 2
26 Domenic Monardo 0
27 Aaron Ness 4 0 3 +2 3 2
28 Paul Carey 4 1 0 -1 12 2
29 Colton Saucerman 1 0 0 -1 2 0
32 Hubert Labrie 4 0 1 -1 4 0
33 Joey Leach 0
36 Garrett Mitchell 4 1 2 -1 3 17

 

GOALIES
Joe Cannata 1-0 – 19 saves on 21 shots
Vitek Vanecek 1-1-1 (OTL) – 74 saves on 83 shots

THREE STARS (opponent)

  1. O’Brien (Bridgeport)
  2. Carey (LV), Stephenson (Bridgeport)
  3. Vanecek, (LV), Vanecek (Syracuse), Galiev (Bridgeport), Sanford (Providence)

 

INJURY REPORT
Dustin Gazley (lower body) – projected out until mid-February
Riley Barber (upper body) – projected out until mid-January
Madison Bowey (lower body) – out indefinitely – projected April return
Christian Djoos (upper body) – day-to-day
Joey Leach (upper body) – week-to-week
Ryan Bourque (lower body) – day-to-day
TRANSACTIONS
ADD – Zach Sanford – Loaned from Washington – Dec. 23
DEL – Zach Sanford – Recalled from loan by Washington – Dec. 27
DEL – Tim McGauley – Reassigned by Washington to South Carolina – Dec. 27
ADD – Zach Sanford – Returned on loan from Washington – Dec. 28
ADD – Colton Saucerman – Signed to PTO by Hershey – Dec. 31
ADD – Jakub Vrana – Returned on loan from Washington – Jan 1

DIVISION STANDINGS

Team GP W L OTL SOL Pts %
Wilkes/Barre 31 21 7 3 0 45 .726
Lehigh Valley 31 21 8 2 0 44 .710
Providence 33 19 7 4 3 45 .682
Hershey 32 18 7 5 2 43 .672
Bridgeport 31 17 14 0 0 34 .548
Springfield 30 12 12 4 2 30 .500
Hartford 32 11 17 3 1 26 .406

 

travis-boyd-1

Travis Boyd is this week’s prospect in the spotlight for NoVa Caps. Look for an article soon to learn more about Travis and his potential for being recalled to Washington.

By Julie Beidler

New third jerseys for the @thehersheybears , announced by the team today. 👍👍

A post shared by NoVa Caps (@nova_caps) on

About Julie Beidler

I teach 11th grade English. I currently serve as the Secretary for the Central PA Sports Hall of Fame and am a PIAA Track/Cross Country and Volleyball official. In my free time, I also freelance for The Lebanon Daily News and cover the Hershey Bears for https://novacapsfans.com/ providing pictures, videos, interviews and stories on the future Washington Capitals.
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One Response to Update from the Den – Hershey’s New Year’s Resolution – No More Injuries!

  1. Pingback: Déjà vu – Stephenson’s New Contract is Mirror Image of Copley’s | NoVa Caps

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