Game Preview: Bears at Devils, 7 p.m.
(Newark, NJ) - The Hershey Bears continue the 2020-21 season, presented by Penn State Health, this evening on the road versus the Binghamton Devils. The puck drops at 7 p.m. at the RWJ Barnabas Health Hockey House in Newark, New Jersey.
Hershey Bears (3-1-2-0) at Binghamton Devils (2-2-1-1)
February 26, 2021 | 7 PM | Game #7 | RWJ Barnabas Health Hockey House
Referees: Mason Riley (#79), Mike Dietrich (#15)
Linesmen: Bill Lyons (#27), J.P. Waleski (#14)
Broadcast Information (Radio pre-game 6:30 p.m.)
RADIO: WFVY-100.1 FM, Fox Sports 1460-AM, Caps Radio 24/7, SportsRadio 98.9-FM & WOYK 1350-AM (Joined in progress)
Voice of the Bears, Zack Fisch, on the call
LISTEN LIVE: Fox Sports AM-1460 Stream, Caps Radio 24/7
WATCH LIVE: AHLTV
LAST TIME OUT:
The Hershey Bears return to the ice this evening looking to get back into the win column after suffering their first regulation loss of the season on Wednesday. Earlier this week, the Bears fell at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, 4-2. The Chocolate and White got goals from WIll Graber and Mike Sgarbossa, but a pair of goals from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton's Radim Zohorna helped the Penguins to the victory. Hershey outshot their I-81 rivals 28-19 in the loss. The Devils have not earned a win since Feb. 10, and in their last contest on Wednesday, they dropped a 5-4 overtime decision to the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. Nick Merkley, Nate Schnarr, Fabian Zetterlund, and Danick Martel had goals in the loss for Binghamton.
DEALING WITH THE DEVILS:
Tonight marks Hershey's second head-to-head clash with Binghamton, with both games coming at the RWJ Barnabas Health Hockey House. In the previous meeting a week and a half ago on Feb. 17, the Chocolate and White came away with a 2-1 victory. Brett Leason scored for Hershey, and rookie Damien Riat tallied his first American Hockey League goal in the third period to break a 1-1 tie and earn the Bears the victory. Hershey fired a season-high 43 shots in the previous meeting. Since that game, the Devils have lost a pair of contests, and entering tonight's game, Binghamton has lost four straight games. Hershey and Binghamton also play tomorrow, finishing the back half of a home-and-home at GIANT Center.
WHERE THERE'S A WILL THERE'S A WAY:
Hershey rookie defender Will Graber scored his first professional goal in Wednesday's loss at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. The native of Broomfield, Colorado is the lone rookie defender on Hershey's roster that has appeared in a game so far, and his tally came in just his third American Hockey League contest. At Dartmouth last season, Graber finished second on the team in points (27) and goals (11), while ranking third in assists (16). A versatile player, Graber played both forward and defense in college, scoring 97 points (35 goals, 65 assists) in 123 NCAA games.
FRESH BLOOD ON BACKEND:
On Tuesday, the Bears added a new face to the blue line. The Chocolate and White signed defender Zach Malatesta to a professional tryout agreement. Malatesta, 24, had 11 points (3g, 8a) in 12 games with Hershey's ECHL affiliate, the South Carolina Stingrays, this season. Last year with the ECHL's Atlanta Gladiators, the 5'9", 174-pound defender served as an alternate captain and ranked second in the ECHL among blue liners in goals (14). In four ECHL seasons with Atlanta and South Carolina, Malatesta has played 180 career games, registering 78 points (23g, 55a) and 226 penalty minutes. If he were to play tonight, it would mark his American Hockey League debut.
Hershey forward Garrett Pilon has a team-best five assists through the first six games of the season. Last season Pilon didn't register his fifth assist of the season until his 20th game of the year. The third-year Bear has helpers in two straight games...Due to injuries to Macoy Erkamps, Martin Fehervary, Lucas Johansen, Tyler Nanne, and Eddie Wittchow, forward Kale Kessy dressed as a defender last game. It was the first time Kessy had played defense in his 323-game professional career...With assists on Wednesday at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, both Paul Ladue and Reece Willcox earned their first points as members of the Chocolate and White...Winger Damien Riat is celebrating his 24th birthday today.
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