Photo: Charlotte Checkers
The Hershey Bears fell to the Charlotte Checkers 4-1 Tuesday night at Bojangles Coliseum in Charlotte, North Carolina. The Checkers opened the scoring with a 5-on-3 power play goal seven minutes into the contest for a 1-0 lead at the first intermission. Charlotte would add a tally early in the middle frame for a quick 2-0 lead, but the Bears would answer late in the period with a goal from Eddie Whittchow for a 2-1 Checkers lead at the second break. The Checkers would add a third marker midway through the final frame and add an empty net goal for the 4-1 win. The loss drops the Bears record to 23-12-2-3 (51 points) on the season. The Bears remain just two points behind first place Hartford, with the two teams colliding this weekend in Hershey.
Pheonix Copley (10-5-4-1, 2.42 GAA, .907 sv%) started between the pipes for the visiting Bears. Anton Forsberg (10-6-2-0, 2.88 GAA, .904 sv%) got the start in goal for the Checkers. The starting forward lines and defensive pairs for the Bears:
— Hershey Bears (@TheHersheyBears) January 14, 2020
Scratches: Mike Sgarbossa (lower-body injury, day-to-day), Joe Snively (upper-body injury, week-to-week), Steve Whitney (upper body injury, week-to-week), Lucas Johansen, Connor Hobbs and Alex Alexeyev were the injury scratches. Riley Sutter and Colby Williams were the healthy scratches. (Djoos was re-assigned from Washington earlier in the day.)
The Checkers held the early advantage in possession and shots on goal, leading 6-2 after the first five minutes of play and 9-4 at the midway point of the period.
The Checkers would be awarded the game’s first power play at 13:00 of the opening frame. Pheonix Copley would then be called for high-sticking, giving the Checkers a 5-on-3 for 1:52, and the Checkers would capitalize. Oliwer Kaski (5) would pot a power play goal at 14:15 of the first period.
The first period would conclude with the Checkers holding a 1-0 lead. Charlotte led in shots 15-6. The Checkers were 1 for 2 on the power play while the Bears did not have a power play opportunity in the first frame.
The Checkers would quickly extend their lead to 2-0 early in the second period with a goal from Oliwer Kaski, his second tally of the game, at 2:16 of the middle frame.
The Bears would climb back into the contest with a goal from Eddie Whittchow (3) at 18:14 of the second period. Brain Pinho (12) and Liam O’Brien (11) had the helpers.
Bears’ defenseman Eddie Whittchow dials long distance, cutting the Checkers lead to one. Bears trail 2-1 after two periods. pic.twitter.com/6ECTt6Q3uf
— NoVa Caps (@NoVa_Caps) January 15, 2020
The second period would end with the Checkers leading 2-1. The Bears led in shots 15-7 for the second period. There were no penalties called in the second period.
The Bears would go to their first power play at 15:37 of the final frame, but would be unable to capitalize.
The Checkers would extend their lead to 3-1 with a snipe form David Gust at 9:20 of the final frame. The goal came on the end of a Bears failed clear, a theme of the night for Hershey.
The Checkers would add an empty net goal late for the 4-1 win.
The same two teams are back at it tomorrow night. Puck drop is set for just after 7:00 pm.
- AHL box score
- Attendance: 8,359
- Checkers outshot the Bears 32-27.
- Matt Moulson led the Bears in shots with 5.
- Pheonix Copley stopped 26 of 29 for a .896 game save percentage.
- This was just the Bears third defeat since December 1st.
- Bears won five-straight road games entering the contest.
- Pheonix Copley was on a six-game win streak entering the game.
SCENES FROM CHARLOTTE