Photo: Hartford Wolf Pack
The Hershey Bears beat the Hartford Wolf Pack 2-1 Saturday afternoon at the XL Center in Hartford. After a scoreless first period, the two team’s exchanged tallies in the middle frame for a 1-1 tie at the second intermission. Madison Bowey would give the Bears a late 2-1 lead with his second goal of the game and that would be the game winner. The two teams will do battle again at Giant Center in Hershey on Sunday. Puck drop is 5:00 p.m.
Vitek Vanecek (10-8-2, 2.93 GAA, .891 sv%) got the start between the pipes for the visiting Bears. Marek Mazenek (8-4-1, 3.07 GAA, .906 sv%) started in net for the Wolf Pack. The starting forward lines and defensive pairs for the Bears:
Scratches: Riley Barber, Mason Mitchell, Anthony Peluso, Colby Williams, Adam Chapie, Tim McGauley, Tyler Lewington and Chris Bourque.
A fairly pedestrian start to this contest with just four shots on goal through the first 10 minutes of play. Vanecek would make a couple of nice saves during the back-half of the opening frame, to keep the game scoreless.
The first 20 minutes would conclude without a score. Hartford outshot the Bears 7-3 for the opening frame. The Wolf Pack went 0 for 2 on the man advantage. The Bears did not have a power play in the first period.
The middle frame started with a little more zest as the game opened up a bit. Both goalies made sparkling saves to keep the game scoreless in the early going of the second period.
Finally, the Bears would break the seal with a nice end-to-end play that was finished with a goal by Madison Bowey at 6:30 of the middle frame. This was Bowey’s first goal of the season at either the NHL and AHL level. Nathan Walker was credited with the assist. This was Walker’s 100th AHL point.
The Wolf Pack would respond moments later with an equalizer by Cole Schneider at 8:23 of the second period.
🚨 Here’s a look at Cole Schneider’s 15th goal of the season 🚨 pic.twitter.com/Wukmvhbtbl
— Hartford Wolf Pack (@WolfPackAHL) March 24, 2018
The period would conclude with the game tied 1-1. Hartford outshot Hershey 14-12 for the second period, and led 21-15 through two periods of play.
Late in the second period, Conner Hobbs saved a goal with his face.
— Hershey Bears (@TheHersheyBears) March 24, 2018
After a scoreless first half of the final frame, the Bears would grab a late 2-1 lead with a second goal from Madison Bowey at 12:49 of the final frame.
Hartford would go to the power play after a Jonas Siegenthaler penalty with 35 seconds remaining in the game, but the Bears penalty kill would stand tall and seal the victory for the Bears.
The Bears outshot the Wolf Pack 7-6 for the final period. Hartford outshot the Bears 27-22 for the game. The Wolf Pack went 0 for 7 on the power play. The Bears went 0 for 3 on the man advantage.
Game highlights from the Hartford Wolf Pack:
- Vitek Vanecek stopped 26 of 27 shots.
- Attendance: 5,766
- The AHL box score is here.
By Jon Sorensen
SCENES FROM HARTFORD