Photo: Tori Hartman
The Bears head into yet another three-in-three weekend coming off of two straight wins last weekend, with the hopes that the team can rebound from a slow start to the season.
Hershey travels to Rochester for a Friday night matchup against the Americans. Puck drop is 7:05 P.M., and will be the first of two meetings between the Americans and the Bears. Hershey completed quite a few roster moves during the past week, with Paul Geiger being recalled from the ECHL’s South Carolina on Tuesday. Geiger played in 49 games with the Americans last season. Forward Liam O’Brien was recalled by the Capital yesterday, and fellow forward Anthony Peluso was re-assigned to Hershey. Forward Kelly Zajac was recalled from South Carolina. Goaltender Vitek Vanecek was re-assigned to South Carolina for conditioning, following a lower-body injury sustained in mid-September, and fellow goalie Pheonix Copley is expected to return to the Bears’ lineup after missing all of the games so far this season due to a lower-body injury.
The Bears host the Toronto Marlies on Saturday night for the two teams’ one and only meeting this season. Hershey will travel to Toronto on Monday, February 19, 2018, for the second and final matchup of the regular season. The Marlies currently lead the North Division with a record of 7-3-0. Hershey currently leads the Eastern Conference in penalty kill rate with 88.2%, while Toronto stands in seventh place with 84.8%.
On Sunday, the Bears travel to Wilkes-Barre Scranton for the second time this season, for an early puck drop at 3:05 P.M.. The last time these teams faced one another, Wilkes-Barre Scranton clinched the 3-2 victory in Wilkes-Barre. Hershey leads the Atlantic Division in penalty kill percentage, but Wilkes-Barre is second with 86.4%. The Penguins also sit in second for power play conversion rate with a 20.9%, but the Bears are right on their heels in third with a 20.8%. The Penguins currently have a record of 6-2-0. Daniel Sprong is a player to watch, as he has seven goals and three assists. Dominik Simon is also a player to keep an eye on, as he is quite the playmaker with seven assists and two goals himself. The Penguins also acquired goalie Casey DeSmith as parent club Pittsburgh returned him from loan on October 30, in exchange for goalie Tristan Jarry.
The Bears have their work cut out for them this weekend as they look to continue their two-game win streak. With the possible return of Pheonix Copley this weekend, things are starting to look up.
By Allison Shuey