Joe Snively And Mason Morelli Score Twice, Connor McMichael Scores 9th Goal Of The Season, Bears Down Phantoms, 5-2

Photo: Lehigh Valley Phantoms

The Hershey Bears downed the Lehigh Valley Phantoms, 5-2, Wednesday night at the PPL Center in Allentown, PA. Joe Snively and Mason Morelli each recorded two goals and Connor McMichael scored his 9th goal since re-joining the Bears in the decisive victory. The Bears record improves to 27-8-4-1 (59 points) on the season.


Zach Fucale (12-7-2-1, 2.52 GAA, .901 sv%) got the start between the pipes for the visiting Bears. Samuel Ersson (10-8-1-0, 2.68 GAA, .911 sv%) got the start in goal for the Phantoms. The forward lines and defensive pairs for the Bears:

Mike Vecchione –Mike Sgarbossa – Ethen Frank
Joe Snively – Connor McMichael – Henrik Borgstrom
Mason Morelli – Garrett Pilon – Shane Gersich
Beck Malenstyn – Riley Sutter – Matt Strome

Aaron Ness – Bobby Nardella
Gabriel Carlsson – Dylan McIlrath
Lucas Johansen – Vinny Iorio

Scratches: Hunter Shepard (non-Covid illness), Hendrix Lapierre (non-Covid illness), Henrik Rybinski (non-Covid illness), Sam Anas (abdominal surgery, out indefinitely), Kale Kessy (upper body injury), Jake Massie, Julian Napravnik and Logan Day.

Recalls/Re-assignments: The Capitals re-assigned goaltender Clay Stevenson from ECHL South Carolina to Hershey on Wednesday. The Capitals recalled Aliaksei Protas from Hershey on Tuesday, January 17.


The Bears opened the scoring with a goal from Connor McMichael (9) just 1:15 into the game. Dylan McIlrath (8) and Joe Snively (2) had the helpers.

But the Phantoms answered just over two minutes later with a goal from Elliot Desnoyers (14) at 3:23. Jordy Bellerive (12) and Max Willman (7) had the assists.

That would be it for the first 20 minutes. Lehigh Valley led in shots, 7-4. Both teams were 0 for 1 on the power play in the first period.


The Bears re-gained the lead early in the middle frame on a power play goal from Joe Snively (4) at 6:47 of the second period. Henrik Borgstrom (12) and Garrett Pilon (9) had the helpers.

The Phantoms tied the game late in the middle frame with a goal form Hayden Hodgson (2) at 13:44. Adam Brooks (8) and Kevin Connauton (5) had the assists.

That would be it for the second period. Shots were tied 13-13 in the middle frame with Lehigh Valley leading 20-17 after two periods. Hershey was 1 for 2 and Lehigh Valley 0 for 1 on the power play after two periods.


The Bears regained the lead once again. Joe Snively roofed a wrister for his second of the game just 1:00 into the final frame. Dylan McIlrath (9) and Gabriel Carlsson (9) had the assists.

Then it was the Mason Morelli show. He scored his 6th of the season on the power play midway through the final frame to give the Bears some breathing room. Connor McMichael (8) and Ethen Frank (14) has the helpers.

Mason Morelli added his second goal of the game just minutes later to make it 5-2. Vincent Iorio (11) and Shane Gersich (8) had the assists.

That would be it as the Bears held on for the 5-2 win.

The same two teams will do it again on Saturday at PPL Center. Puck drop is set for 7:15PM.


  • AHL box score
  • Attendance: 5,224
  • Joe Snively had three points.
  • Mason Morelli had two points.
  • Dylan McIlrath had two points.
  • Zach Fucale stopped 20 of 22 shots faced.
  • Bears are 6-0 against Lehigh Valley this season.
  • Joe Snively recorded his 100th career professional point.
  • Bears now have power play goals in seven straight games.
  • Mike Vecchione recorded his 200th career professional point.

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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6 Responses to Joe Snively And Mason Morelli Score Twice, Connor McMichael Scores 9th Goal Of The Season, Bears Down Phantoms, 5-2

  1. Jon Sorensen says:

    If there was one concern with the Bears (extremely minor) it was their floundering power play. It’s finally starting to get it’s act together, and that’s bad news for the AHL.

  2. KimRB says:

    Well, let’s recap here. A few months ago, Snively and McMichael were wasting away on the Caps roster, getting miniscule minutes, if and when they actually dressed. Fast forward to tonight, and both are thriving in the AHL, getting solid, top line minutes.

    So are both “tweener” players, who are fantastic in the A, but can’t crack an NHL lineup, or were both misused? 🤔

  3. Jon Sorensen says:

    Excellent trolling by Seattle fans:

  4. novafyre says:

    Stingrays lost. No Clay, Bears and Maass had 0 goals, 0 assists, 0 shots, Has did have 3 shots.

  5. Mark Eiben says:

    I like the Joe Snipley comment, creative. 😉

  6. Anonymous says:

    Snively needs to have a real shot with Caps. Not a game every other

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