Axel Jonsson-Fjallby And Brian Pinho Score In Bears 6-3 Loss To Phantoms

Photo: Lehigh Valley Phantoms

The Hershey Bears fell to the Lehigh Valley Phantoms, 6-3 Friday night at the PPL Center in Allentown. The loss drops the Bears record to 23-14-3-3 (52 points) on the season.

The Phantoms opened the scoring with a pair of goals in the first 8:28 of the opening frame. The Bears dented the twine with a power play goal from Brian Pinho late in the first period, but the Phantoms would answer with tally with 33 seconds left in the period for a 3-1 lead at the first intermission.

The Phantoms added two more goals in the middle frame for a comfortable 5-1 lead after 40 minutes of play.

The Bears cut the Phantoms lead to three goals with a tally by Axel Jonsson-Fjallby 21 seconds into the final frame. The Bears would pull their goaltender with six minutes remaining in regulation and add a 6-on-5 goal from Mason Morelli to make it 5-3. The Phantoms would add an empty net goal for the 6-3 final.


STARTERS

The visiting Bears started goaltender Zach Fucale (7-4-4-0, 2.68 GAA, .890 sv%) in net, while the Phantoms countered with Felix Sandstrom (6-11-3-1, 3.09 GAA, .893 sv%) in goal. The starting forward lines and defensive pairs for the Bears:

Injuries: Garrett Pilon (upper-body injury), Alex Alexeyev (upper-body injury), Mike Sgarbossa (upper-body injury), Matt Moulson (back surgery) and Bobby Nardella (lower-body injury).

Scratches: Marcus Vela, Colby McAuley.

COVID-Protocol: Tobias Geisser.


FIRST PERIOD

The Phantoms struck first as a result of a Bears miscue in their own end. Brennan Saulnier notched the game’s first tally 1:20 into the first frame. Matthew Strome (7) had the lone assist.

The Phantoms would make it 2-0 midway through the first stanza with a goal from Alex Kile (3) at 8:28 of the first period. Matthew Strome (8) and Adam Clendening (20) had the helpers.

The Bears got on the scoreboard with a deflected shot by Brian Pinho (4) at 16:26 of the first period. Cody Franson (17) and Mike Vecchione (18) had the assists on the power play goal.

But the Phantoms would reinstate their two-goal advantage in the waning seconds of the frame with a goal from Matthew Strome (2) just 33 seconds left in the period.

The Phantoms lead 3-1 at the end of the first period. Hershey led in shots 9-7 in the first period. Hershey was 1 for 1 on the power play while the Phantoms did not have a man advantage in the first period.


SECOND PERIOD

The Phantoms extended their lead to 4-1 with a goal from Logan Day (2) at 14:13 of the second period. Hayden Hodgson (9) and Cal O’Reilly (20) had the assists.

The Phantoms would then stretch it to 5-1 with a goal from Cal O’Reilly (10) at 18:49 of the second period. Hayden Hodgson (10) and Garrett Wilson (12) had the assists.

The Phantoms led in shots 6-3 in the second period and 13-12 after two periods of play. Hershey was 1 for 3 and Lehigh Valley 1 for 1 on the power play after two periods.


THIRD PERIOD

Hunter Shepard replaced Zach Fucale in goal to start the third period.

The Bears cut into the Phantoms lead just 21 seconds into the final frame with a top-shelf snipe from Axel Jonsson-Fjallby (14). Mike Vecchione (19) and Brian Pinho (9) had the assists.

The Bears pulled their netminder with six minutes remaining in the game and it would soon pay dividends. Masion Morelli would pot the Bears third goal at 6-on-5 to make it 5-3 at 15:09 of the third period. Mike Vecchione (20) and Cody Franson (18) had the assists.

The Phantoms would add an empty net goal for the 6-3 final.

The Bears are back in action on Saturday when they host the Belleville Senators at Giant Center. Puck drop is set for just after 7:00 PM.


SHAVINGS

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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1 Response to Axel Jonsson-Fjallby And Brian Pinho Score In Bears 6-3 Loss To Phantoms

  1. Anonymous says:

    Bears continue to struggle.

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