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Wolf Pack Earn Weekend Split Thanks to Late Justin Richards Goal

January 23, 2022 - American Hockey League (AHL) - Hartford Wolf Pack News Release

HARTFORD, CT - The Hartford Wolf Pack rebounded in a big way on Sunday afternoon at the Giant Center in Hershey, Pennsylvania. Less than 24 hours after dropping a 5-0 decision, the Wolf Pack earned the weekend split with a 3-2 victory over the Hershey Bears thanks to a late goal from Justin Richards.

Ty Ronning collected a loose puck along the wall in the Hershey zone, quickly playing it back to the point for defenseman Tarmo Reunanen. Reunanen fired a low shot into traffic, with Richards providing a screen in front of Hershey starter Zach Fucale. Richards got a piece of the shot, deflecting home the eventual winning goal at 17:14 of the third period. The goal, Richards' third of the season, was his second game winner.

The Wolf Pack opened the scoring in this game just 7:08 into contest. Austin Rueschhoff cut into the Bears' zone, taking possession all the way behind the Hershey goal. His attempted drop pass hit the end boards, popping off the stick of Fucale and to the side of the net. Ronning was there and cut in front of the net for a high-danger chance on Fucale. The veteran netminder made the initial save, but the rebound popped right to Tanner Fritz. Fritz buried his fifth goal of the season, and first in 15 games, to put the Pack ahead 1-0.

The Bears would respond late in the period, evening the contest at 1-1 on the powerplay. Axel Jonsson-Fjallby, who scored a hat-trick last night, fired a quick pass in front of the Hartford goal that was corralled by Joe Snively. Snively quickly fired a shot that beat Adam Húska at 19:02.

In the middle frame, Hartford again struck first to jump ahead 2-1. Jonny Brodzinski, assigned to the Wolf Pack from the Rangers taxi squad on Sunday morning, extended his point streak to five games with his team-leading 12th goal. Zac Jones carried the puck behind the Hershey goal, then placed a perfect pass onto the stick of Brodzinski at the front of the goal. The captain fired the puck over the blocker of Fucale at 5:36 of the second period.

Once again, however, the Bears would respond. Mike Vecchione scored his sixth goal of the season at 17:16 to even the score at 2-2. Vecchione slid to one-knee and released a heavy shot over Húska off a feed from Shane Gersich.

The third period would belong to the Wolf Pack, however, as Richards broke the tie at 17:14. Húska made nine saves in the frame to cement his fourth victory of the season.

The Pack is back at the XL Center on Wednesday night when the Springfield Thunderbirds come to town. Puck drop is set for 7:00 p.m. and tickets are available at The Wolf Pack will also host the Providence Bruins (7:00 p.m.) on Friday night and Lehigh Valley Phantoms (7:00 p.m.) on Saturday night.

Join us for $2 beers and $1 hot dogs, presented by Nomads Entertainment, on Friday night. On Saturday, journey with us to a galaxy far, far away for 'Star Wars Night'!

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