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Game Preview: Bears at Phantoms, 7:05 p.m.

March 3, 2021 - American Hockey League (AHL) - Hershey Bears News Release


(Allentown, PA- March 3, 2021) - The Hershey Bears continue the 2020-21 season, presented by Penn State Health, this evening on the road versus the Lehigh Valley Phantoms. The puck drops at 7:05 p.m. at PPL Center.

Hershey Bears (5-1-2-0) at Lehigh Valley Phantoms (4-1-2-0)

March 3, 2021 | 7:05 PM | Game #9 | PPL Center

Referees: Mason Riley (#79), Peter Schlittenhardt (#12)

Linesmen: Michael Magee (#41), Tyler Loftus (#11)

Broadcast Information (Radio pre-game 6:30 p.m.)

RADIO: WFVY-100.1 FM, Fox Sports 1460-AM, 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

WATCH LIVE: AHLTV

LAST TIME OUT:

The Bears enter tonight's contest having won two straight games and claiming victories in four of the past five games. The Chocolate and White's last outing came this past Saturday, a 3-0 shutout victory over the Binghamton Devils at GIANT Center. Goaltender Zach Fucale was perfect between the pipes with 22 saves, and the Bears got goals from Joe Snively, Matt Moulson, and Mike Sgarbossa to help the club to a sweep of a home-and-home with the Devils. The Phantoms enter tonight's game after dropping a pair of contests to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton last weekend. In this past Saturday's game, the Baby Pens earned a 5-4 overtime win at PPL Center despite two goals from Lehigh Valley's Max Willman.

SEASON SERIES SO FAR:

Tonight marks the third meeting between the two Keystone State rivals this season, and the first at the PPL Center. The Phantoms have claimed a pair of overtime victories versus Hershey this season at GIANT Center. Lehigh Valley beat the Bears 2-1 on Feb. 6 thanks to a game-tying goal with just 45 seconds remaining from Wyatte Wylie, and the overtime winner from Ryan Fitzgerald. On Feb. 14, the Phantoms won a high-scoring affair in overtime, 5-4, thanks to David Kase's winning goal amid a three-point game. Neither team has scored on the power play in the two contests, with Hershey going 0-for-5 and the Phantoms at 0-for-8.

POWER AT THE PPL: Dating back to January 2019, the Bears have collected points in eight straight games at the PPL Center in Allentown. Hershey is 6-0-1-1 in that stretch, outscoring the Phantoms 24-14. Hershey's point streak at Lehigh Valley started on Jan. 12, 2019 with a 3-0 win over the Phantoms in a game that turned the club's 2018-19 season around. That contest started a 17-game point streak for the Chocolate and White, and the Bears climbed from last place in the league to a playoff position. Prior to that contest, Hershey had lost nine straight games in regulation at PPL Center, being outscored by the Phantoms, 45-18.

PROMINENT PILON:

Third-year pro Garrett Pilon leads the Bears with eight points (1g, 7a) through the first eight games of the season. Pilon has points in four straight contests entering tonight's game, collecting five points (1g, 4a) in that span. Five of his assists this season have been primary helpers and three assists have come on the power play. Heading into tonight's road contest at Lehigh Valley, Pilon has points in his past three games at PPL Center (2g, 1a).

SCOUTING THE PHANTOMS:

Lehigh Valley rookie forward Max Willman was named the CCM/AHL Player of the Week after striking for five goals in three games last week. He has goals in four straight contests for the Phantoms and has tallied multi-goal games in two of his past three games. Willman, who has seven points (6g, 1a) in seven games this season, is the first Phantom to earn these league honors since Colin McDonald in January 2016. In addition to Willman, fellow rookie Zayde Wisdom has continued to impress, striking for a team-best eight points (6g, 2a) through his first seven professional games. He has goals in two straight games, and also registered his first two AHL goals earlier this season versus the Bears on Feb. 14 at GIANT Center. Wisdom, a 4th round selection of the Flyers in 2020, is the youngest player in Phantoms' club history, debuting earlier this season at just 18 years, 6 months, and 30 days old.

PK SUCCESS:

Tonight's game features two of the AHL's top teams on the penalty kill. The Phantoms have gone 18-for-19 while a man down this season, good for the top spot in the league at 94.7% though their first seven games of the season. Lehigh Valley also has one shorthanded goal this season, tallied by David Kase. The Bears have been shorthanded significantly more this season, but the Chocolate and White rank third in the AHL at 90.6% on the penalty kill, going 29-for-32 through eight games this season. Last year, the Bears went 41-for-43 (95.3%) on the penalty kill versus the Phantoms in 10 games.


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