Game Preview: Bears at Checkers, 6 p.m.
(Charlotte, NC) - The Hershey Bears rematch with the Charlotte Checkers tonight from the Bojangles' Coliseum. Puck drop is slated for 6 p.m. The Checkers defeated the Bears, 5-3, on Friday evening, handing the Chocolate and White its first loss of the new campaign. This evening's contest concludes Hershey's two-game set in Charlotte as the club will return home for three games at GIANT Center next week.
Hershey Bears (2-1-0-0) at Charlotte Checkers (2-1-0-0)
October 23, 2021 | 6 PM | Game #4 | Bojangles' Coliseum
Referees: Jake Kamrass (#3), Justin Kea (#20/#44)
Linesmen: Sean D'Loughy (#95), Brady Fagan (#82)
Voice of the Bears, Zack Fisch, and Matt Trust on the Call
RADIO: WFVY-100.1 FM, Fox Sports 1460-AM, SportsRadio 98.9-FM & WOYK 1350-AM, Caps Radio 24/7
WATCH LIVE: AHLTV
LISTEN LIVE: Fox Sports AM-1460 Stream, Caps Radio 24/7
Radio pre-game coverage starts at 5:30
LAST TIME OUT:
These same teams squared off last night in Charlotte's home opener at the Bojangles' Coliseum. It was the home team coming out victorious as the Checkers upended the Bears, 5-3, in front of 6,317 fans. The Bears opened the scoring for the third straight game, striking on a 2-on-1 rush at 5:28 of the first period, courtesy of Aliaksei Protas' first goal of the season. Charlotte recorded goals from Alexander True and Max McCormick before the period's close to grab a 2-1 lead into the dressing room. In the middle frame, the Bears tallied twice on the power play, earning a 5-on-3 goal from Mike Sgarbossa at 9:42, and a strike from Garrett Pilon at 13:47 to take a 3-2 lead. Charlotte would tie the game less than two minutes later, and despite being outshot 9-3 in the third period, the Checkers scored twice to pull away. McCormick's second goal of the game came at 15:14 and proved to be the game-winner. The forward found himself wide open at the net front after Hershey netminder Pheonix Copley turned over a bouncing puck. With Copley out of position, True centered to McCormick for the go-ahead goal. Charlotte's Matt Kiersted added his first professional goal into an empty net at 18:59 to give the Checkers the win.
SPECIAL TEAMS SUCCESS:
Hershey went 2-for-6 on the power play last night and were also a perfect 4-for-4 on the penalty kill. The Bears are now 4-for-12 (33.3%) on the man-advantage in two games versus the Checkers this season, and Hershey has recorded a power play goal from four different players. On the penalty kill, the Bears have killed 14 consecutive penalties after surrendering a goal on the first penalty kill of the season versus the Checkers last Saturday. Hershey's penalty kill is 14-for-15 (93.3%) through the first three games of the 2021-22 campaign.
New addition Mike Vecchione has enjoyed a strong start to his tenure with the Chocolate and White. Vecchione, who was signed to a one-year, two-way deal by the Washington Capitals this summer, has points in each of his first three games with the Bears. The Saugus, Mass. native had two assists in last night's loss, and in total earned four points (1g, 3a) in three contests.
CLOSING IN ON 100:
Hershey goaltender Zach Fucale enters tonight's game with 99 professional wins to his credit. The Laval native has recorded 61 career ECHL wins and 38 more at the AHL level. He's won 10 of his 12 games with Hershey, and dating back to last season, Fucale has won his past five appearances. He won his lone start this season, earning First Star honors with 23 saves in a 2-1 win over Lehigh Valley last Sunday.
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