Hendrix Lapierre Scores 12th Goal Of The Season, Bears Down The Thunderbirds, 3-2

Screen cap: AHL TV

The Hershey Bears downed the Springfield Thunderbirds, 3-2 Friday night at the MassMutual Center in Springfield, Mass. The victory improves the Bears record to 42-17-5-4 (93 points) on the season. They remain one point behind the Providence Bruins for first place in the Atlantic Division.

Hendrix Lapierre opened the scoring just 2:11 into the contest and Garrett Pilon added a late tally for a 2-1 Bears lead at the first intermission. After a tying goal by the T-Birds in the middle frame, Sam Anas reinstated the Bears lead with a power play goal early in the third period and the Bears held the lead for the 3-2 final.


Hunter Shepard (18-7-5-1, 2.05 GAA, .920 sv%) got the start between the pipes for the visiting Bears. Joel Hofer (25-14-5-4, 2.56 GAA, .919 sv%) got the start in goal for the Thunderbirds. The forward lines and defensive pairs for the Bears:

Joe Snively – Mike Sgarbossa – Mike Vecchione
Henrik Borgstrom – Connor McMichael – Sam Anas
Mason Morelli – Hendrix Lapierre – Garrett Pilon
Shane Gersich – Riley Sutter – Henrik Rybinski

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

Scratches: Ethen Frank (upper body injury – did not make the trip), Logan Day, Matt Strome, Julian Napravnik, Jake Massie and Bogdan Trineyev.

Recalls/Re-assignments: Beck Malenstyn was recalled by the Capitals prior to tonight’s game. Ludwig Persson was officially re-assigned from BIK Karlskoga of HockeyAllsvenskan (Sweden-2) to Hershey on Friday.


The Bears quickly opened the scoring on Hendrix Lapierre‘s 12th goal of the season. Lapierre’s original shot was blocked by Hofer but the rebound was kicked in by T-Birds defenseman Hunter Skinner at 2:11. Garrett Pilon (15) had the lone assist.

Hunter Shepard was strong in the early going, making two very big stops to keep the T-Birds off the scoreboard.

Springfield eventually tied the game late in the period on a questionable tally by Mikhail Abramov (8) at 13:45. The play was reviewed and a goal was ultimately awarded.

But the Bears got it right back. Garrett Pilon picked a pass in the Bears zone and roofed a shot for his 10th tally of the season at 16:08. The goal was unassisted.

The first period concluded with the Bears holding the 2-1 lead. Springfield led in shots 11-10. There were no penalties called in the first frame.


The T-Birds tied the game early in the middle frame. Keean Washkurak (10) notched the tying tally just 3:34 into the second period. Greg Printz (10) and Mitchell Hoelscher (7) had the helpers.

And that was it for the second period. Springfield led in shots 15-11 in the second period and 26-21 after two periods. The T-Birds were 0 for 2 on the power play while the Bears did not have a man advantage after two periods.


The Bears regained the lead early in the final frame with a power play goal from Sam Anas (13) at 5:34 of the third period. Joe Snively (16) and Bobby Nardella (21) had the assists.

And that was it, as the Bears held on for the 3-2 win.

The Bears are back in action on Saturday when they host the Charlotte Checkers at Giant Center. Puck drop is set for 7PM.


  • AHL box score
  • Attendance: 6,793
  • Bears sweep Thunderbirds for the season, 4-0-0.
  • Hunter Shepard has allowed just nine goals in last seven games.
  • Springfield led in shots 39-32 for the game.
  • Hunter Shepard stopped 37 of 39 shots faced for a .945 game save percentage.

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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3 Responses to Hendrix Lapierre Scores 12th Goal Of The Season, Bears Down The Thunderbirds, 3-2

  1. novafyre says:

    In a South division matchup the first place Stingrays (and only clinched South team so far with 87 pts) hosted the second place Florida Everblades (82 pts) who were looking for a clinching win. Clay was spotless in net – up until the last 2 minutes when the Everblades scored. A couple of his diving saves were spectacular. The Rays won 4-1 as he stopped 24 of 25 shots. Rays only had 16 sog.

    Bears fell down towards the end of the first period and went down the tunnel limping. He started the second but went back to the locker room after struggling through a single shift. He did not return.

    Josh Wilkins, Rays points leader with 62, led the Rays offense with one goal and two assists. Bear is second in points and tied with O’Neil for most goals, 23 (O’Neil is also ECHL Player of the Week)). Their third points leader, Del Gaizo, is still on a PTO with Milwaukee.

    Benton had 0 sog, Bear 1, Kim 2 but no goals or assists. Has was still out, don’t know why.

    Everblades stay in town for another try tomorrow.

    • KimRB says:

      Well, we know the Caps will be hitting the tees in couple weeks, but it would be nice to see both SC and Hershey lift their Cups this year. Shows a strong organization, if nothing else.

  2. KimRB says:

    The team’s of both Capitals prospects in the Frozen Four won their semi-final games, and both advance to the championship game. But as has been noted before, Chase Clark will almost certainly not play, as he is the backup goalie. So it’s Minnesota vs. Quinnipiac today. Ryan Chesley had an assist and a shot on goal, in the Gophers win over Boston University

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