Game Preview: Bears at Thunderbirds, 7:05 PM
(Springfield, MA) - Tonight, the Hershey Bears play their third and final game at the MassMutual Center this season against the Springfield Thunderbirds. The Bears look to respond after dropping a 5-2 decision to the T-Birds on Wednesday night. In two games at the MassMutual Center this season, the Chocolate and White have been outscored by a grand total of 13-3.
Hershey Bears (25-14-2-3) at Springfield Thunderbirds (24-18-2-0)
January 24, 2020 | 7:05 PM | Game #45 | MassMutual Center
Referees: Troy Paterson (29), Mike Dietrich (15)
Linesmen: Kevin Briganti (39), Kyle Richetelle (47)
ATLANTIC DIVISION STANDINGS
Broadcast Information (Pre-game 6:35 p.m.)
RADIO: WQIC-100.1 FM, Fox Sports 1460-AM, WOYK-1350 AM, 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 fell behind early and dropped a 5-2 decision to the Springfield Thunderbirds on Wednesday night at the MassMutual Center. Jonathan Ang scored the game's first goal for Springfield only 3:25 in, and Aleksi Saarela doubled his team's lead with a power play goal at 13:20. The T-Birds tallied twice more in the second stanza with strikes courtesy of Daniel Audette and Ang's second of the evening. Hershey pulled within 4-2 in the 3rd period with Alex Alexeyev's second goal of the season at 1:46, and Philippe Maillet's ninth at 17:17. In the final minute, Owen Tippett hit the empty net at 19:25 to round out the 5-2 final.
Tonight features a remarkable milestone for Bears veteran forward Matt Moulson. The 14th year pro will be skating in his 1,000th professional game. Moulson enters tonight with 650 games played at the NHL level, and 349 in the American Hockey League. Four points away from 300 in his AHL career (133 goals, 163 assists), Moulson has seen minor league action with Manchester Monarchs, Ontario Reign and Hershey Bears. The three-time 30 goal scorer in the NHL debuted with the Los Angeles Kings in 2007-08 and played parts of five seasons with the New York Islanders, five seasons with the Buffalo Sabres and a 20 game stint with the Minnesota Wild in 2013-14. In his NHL career, the North York, Ontario native totaled 369 points (176 goals, 193 assists). Moulson was originally drafted in 2003 in the 9th round, 263rd overall by the Pittsburgh Penguins.
ALEX ADDS IN:
On Wednesday night, Capitals 2018 1st round selection Alex Alexeyev hit the back of the net for the first time since Opening Night on Oct. 5. On the evening Alexeyev made his professional debut, the rookie blueliner scored only 1:02 into the game on his first career shot, beating Pens goaltender Casey DeSmith. Wednesday, Alexeyev tickled the twine at 1:46 of the 3rd period after beating T-Birds goaltender Ryan Bednard. The St. Petersburg, Russia native also recorded an assist on Philippe Maillet's goal to mark his second career multi-point game, and first since his two assist night on Oct. 18 at Belleville. The bronze medalist in the 2019 World Junior Championship has 16 points (two goals, 14 assists) in 41 games this season with the Chocolate and White.
The Bears will hope third time's the charm tonight when playing at the MassMutual Center this season. Hershey and Springfield faced off for the first time this season on Nov. 1, and the Bears suffered their most lopsided loss of the season, and yielded eight goals for the first time since Oct. 20, 2012. In two games in Springfield this season, the Chocolate and White have been outscored a grand total of 13-3 after losing 8-1 in November, and most recently, 5-2, on Wednesday. In the season-series, Matt Moulson leads the Bears with five points (three goals, two assists) in four games. In the opposite dressing room, Joel Lowry leads the T-Birds with six points in four games, all assists. Both Hershey netminders Vitek Vanecek and Pheonix Copley have 1-1-0 record against the T-Birds, whereas the Chocolate and White have faced a different Springfield goaltender in each of their previous four meetings.
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