The Hershey Bears beat the Charlotte Checkers 2-0 Saturday evening at Bojangles’ Coliseum in Charlotte. The victory improves the Bears overall record to 2-5-1. The loss is the first of the season for the Checkers, who fall to 5-1-0. The Bears are off until Friday when they visit the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins in Wilkes-Barre. The Bears will return home next Saturday to host the same Penguins at Giant Center.
The weekend penalty fest would continue Saturday night in Charlotte, but this time things would unfold in favor of the Bears. Liam O’Brien would register the only goal of the opening stanza, giving the Bears a 1-0 at the first intermission. Steven Whitney would score his first goal as a Bear to give Hershey a 2-0 lead at the second intermission. The third period would go scoreless, as Vitek Vanecek would pitch his 8th career shutout for the Bears.
Vitek Vanecek (1-2-1, 2.95 GAA, .899 sv%) started in goal for the visiting Bears. He was also in goal for all of last nights game against the Checkers. Alex Nedeljkovic (5-0-0, 2.17 GAA, .917sv%) got the start between the pipes for the undefeated Checkers. The starting forward lines and defensive pairs for the Bears:
The Bears would strike first with a power play goal from Liam O’brien at 3:28 of the first period. Garrett Pilon made a nice centering pass to the trailing O’brien who would finish for the score. Connor Hobbs was credited with the other assist.
That would be the only scoring for the first 20 minutes. The Bears outshot the Checkers 10-6 for the opening frame. Liam O’Brien led the Bears with 3 shots in the opening frame. The Bears were 1 for 4 and the Checkers 0 for 1 on the man advantage.
The second period went much like the first. Penalties galore with a line Bears goal wedged in. The Bears would add to their lead with a goal from Steven Whitney at 9:07 of the middle frame. Juuso Ikonen would make a beautiful entry pass to Whitney, setting up the tally. Hampus Gustafsson would be credited with the second assist.
— Hershey Bears (@TheHersheyBears) October 20, 2018
The period would conclude with the Bears leading 2-0. Charlotte outshot Hershey 10-9 for the period, with the Bears leading 19-16 after 40 minutes of play. The Bears were 1 for 7 and the Checkers 0 for 3 on the power play after two periods of play.
The Bears and Checkers would skate to a scoreless final frame. The Bears would hold on for the 2-0 win.
- Bears take 5 of 6 points on the road this week.
- Vitek Vanecek pitched his 8th career shutout with Hershey.
- The Bears were 1 for 8 and the Checkers were 0 for 8 on the power play.
- Checkers outshot the Bears 25-24.
- Liam O’brien led the Bears with 4 shots in the game. Jayson Megna, Michael Sgarbossa and Conner Hobbs each had 3 shots.
- Attendance: 8,003
- The AHL box score is here.
SCENES FROM CHARLOTTE