Hershey Bears Beat Bridgeport Sound Tigers 2-1 in Shootout

Photos: Bridgeport Sound Tigers

The Hershey Bears beat the Bridgeport Sound Tigers 2-1 in overtime Sunday afternoon at Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport. The win improves the Bears record to 38-24-3-4 (83 points) on the season. Hershey now embarks on a three-game road trip starting Thursday morning with a tilt against the Marlies in Toronto. Puck drop is set for 11:00 AM.

Vitek Vanecek (17-10-5-2, 2.76 GAA, .902 sv%) got the start between the pipes for the visiting Bears. Christopher Gibson (19-11-4-1, 2.97 GAA, .898 sv%) got the start in goal for the Sound Tigers. The starting forward lines and defensive pairs for the Bears:

O’Brien– Sgarbossa – Barber
Walker– Megna – Smith-Pelly
Snively – Pilon – Whitney
Gersich – Pinho – Malenstyn

Ness – Lewington
Geisser – Sproul
Johansen – Hobbs

Scratches: Kris Bindulis (upper body) and Hampus Gustafsson (illness) were the injury scratches. Tobias GeisserMax Kammerer, Colby Williams, and Juuso Ikonen were the healthy scratches.

Just 1:33 into the contest, the Bears were flagged for two penalties (“too many men” and hooking on Garrett Pilon), giving the Sound Tigers an early 5-on-3 power play, and they would capitalize. Sebastian Aho would notch the game’s first tally while 5-on-3 at 2:50 of the opening frame.

The first period would end with the Sound Tigers leading 1-0. Hershey outshot Bridgeport 6-5 for the first 20 minutes. The Bears were 0 for 3 and the Sound Tigers were 1 for 3 on the power play.

Garrett Pilon and Kieffer Bellows would get into a minor altercation that resulted in a number of penalties including a 10-minute misconduct for the Bears’ Beck Malenstyn and the ejection of Sound Tiger Kieffer Bellows. Bellows would drop the gloves and begin punching Pilon, who did not drop the gloves.

Pilon would need repairs, but returned later in the second period. The Bears were ultimately awarded a five-minute major penalty, and would capitalize on the extended man-advantage.

The Bears would tie the game with a power play goal from Steve Whitney at 13:12 of the second period.

The second period would end with the game tied 1-1. The Bears led in shots 12-7 for the second period and 18-12 after 40 minutes of play. The Bears were 1 for 6 and the Sound Tigers 1 for 3 on the power play after two periods.

The Bears and Sound Tigers would skate to a scoreless final frame, sending the game to overtime. The Bears outshot the Sound Tigers 8-5 in the final frame, and 26-17 in regulation. The Bears were 1 for 6 and the Sound Tigers 1 for 4 on the power play in regulation.

The overtime would go scoreless as well.

Riley Barber and Devante Smith-Pelly would score in the shootout for the Bears win. Vitek Vanecek stopped two of three attempts by the Sound Tigers.


  • The Bears outshot the Sound Tigers 27-22.
  • Aaron Ness led the Bears in shots with 3.
  • Vitek Vanecek stopped 21 of 22 shots and was the first star of the game.
  • Bears were outshot 5-0 in the overtime.
  • The Bears and Sound Tigers split the season series 3-3.
  • Attendance: 5,589
  • The AHL box score is here.

About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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