Wolf Pack Visit Bears in Key Atlantic Division Showdown
HARTFORD, CT - The Hartford Wolf Pack make their first visit to Hershey since January 18th, 2020, tonight as they open a key two-game set with the Bears at the Giant Center. The sides will meet again tomorrow afternoon at 3:00 p.m. to conclude the back-to-back weekend.
Puck drop is set for 7:00 p.m.
Tale of The Tape:
This is the second of six meetings this season between the Wolf Pack and the Bears. It's also the first of three meetings at the Giant Center in 2021-22, and the first of three meetings in a span of eleven days. The sides will meet again tomorrow afternoon at 3:00 p.m., and then on Wednesday, February 2nd. All three games will take place at the Giant Center. The Bears don't make their next trip to Hartford until March 5th.
The Wolf Pack took the first meeting of the season by a 7-3 decision on November 20th. After building a 2-0 lead in the first period on goals by Anthony Greco and Patrick Khodorenko, the Pack found themselves trailing 3-2 after 40 minutes due to a three-goal outburst in the middle frame by the Bears. Lauri Pajuniemi tied the contest at 2:53, then gave Hartford the lead at 3:57 of the third period as the Pack pulled away for two points thanks to five third period goals.
The Wolf Pack are just 5-11-2-1 against the Bears over the course of the last five seasons.
Wolf Pack Outlook:
The Wolf Pack won back-to-back games for the first time since November on Wednesday night thanks to a 5-2 victory over the Toronto Marlies. Austin Rueschhoff scored twice, including the winning marker at 4:56 of the third period, while captain Jonny Brodzinski scored in his first game with the Wolf Pack since December 22nd. Keith Kinkaid made 28 saves for the decision.
Greco leads active Wolf Pack skaters with 24 points (8 g, 16 a) on the season. He, Ty Ronning, and Pajuniemi are tied for the team lead in goals among active skaters with eight each.
The New York Rangers recalled Brodzinski, forward Tim Gettinger, and defenseman Zac Jones to the taxi squad on Thursday afternoon. In addition, the Wolf Pack released forward Jacob Hayhurst from his professional tryout on Thursday.
Rueschhoff has scored goals in four consecutive games, having scored six times in that span. He became the first Wolf Pack player this season to score multiple goals in consecutive games on Wednesday night. Defenseman Anthony Bitetto has scored two assists in each of the last two tilts, while forward Justin Richards has three helpers in that span.
The Bears enter tonight's game with a record of 18-11-3-2 following last Sunday's 2-1 loss at the hands of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. Shane Gersich scored his tenth of the season for the Bears, but Alex Nylander and Patrick Watling lit the lamp to push the Penguins to victory.
The Bears have lost three straight contests (0-1-1-1) but have points in two of those losses. Joe Snively leads the Hershey attack with 32 points (11 g, 21 a) on the season. Garrett Pilon leads the club with 12 goals on the campaign. Four Bears have scored double-digit goals so far in 2021-22.
The Pack is back with three home games in four nights next week! First, the club hosts the rival Springfield Thunderbirds on Wednesday, January 26th. Then, the Providence Bruins come to town on Friday, January 28th! Join us for $2 beers and $1 hot dogs, compliments of our friends at Nomads Entertainment. Lastly, we travel to a galaxy far, far away on January 29th when the Lehigh Valley Phantoms come to town for 'Star Wars Night' at the XL Center! All games start at 7:00 p.m.
Tickets for all three games are available at www.hartfordwolfpack.com!
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