This evening the Hershey Bears took on the Charlotte Checkers. If you weren’t at this game or listening to it…you missed out. Oh boy.
The first period seemed innocent enough. Brian Willsie opened scoring on the power play. Kyle Greentree, returning from injury, got the primary assist. A minute later, Greentree himself would pot a goal, his 11th overall, during a 4-on-4. Tim Leone and John Walton have dubbed him the “Checker Killer.” Incredibly fitting as that goal was his 5th goal in 4 games against the Checkers. Charlotte seemed to gather some momentum in the second period. They scored 95 seconds into the period to cut Hershey’s lead in half.
But it was Brian Fahey‘s goal in the middle of period that changed the game. Checkers goaltender Justin Pogge immediately argued the goal, though we’re not sure why exactly. He stormed out of the crease, shoving Trevor Bruess to the ice before arguing with the refs. He was immediately given an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty…but he kept arguing. He stormed around the ice, yelling at the ref and pushing the goal over. Talk about a temper tantrum. After getting a misconduct and game misconduct for abuse of officials, he left the ice but not before breaking his stick into two pieces. Kyle has some great photos of the entire sequence below. Be sure to check them out.
With Mike Murphy in net, the Checkers had to regroup. In the final few moments of the second period, Keith Aucoin scored his 200th AHL career goal. This milestone was delayed a little bit due to his knee injury but better late than never. Big congratulations to Coiner! He also scored his 201st goal during the third period on a rebound shot.
Despite getting another two goals in the third period, the Checkers could not overcome Hershey’s lead. Boyd Kane eventually ended the game with a goal in the last minute. The Bears go into the holiday break with a 6-3 victory. Rest up, boys. Happy Holidays!
- It was another special jersey night for Hershey. For this game, they wore dark blue Christmas jerseys, complete with white swirls, ornaments, and a Bear wearing a Santa hat. I’ve got to say, my favorite part about the special jerseys is seeing how badly they clash with the chocolate pants and helmets. Check out the pictures below. They’re something else.
- Patrick McNeill recorded his first point of the season with a primary assist on Fahey’s goal. He also got a secondary assist on one of Aucoin’s goals. It’s been a great thing to see him healthy and on the ice again.
- It’s worth noting that tonight was Dany Sabourin‘s first home win of the season and he earned it. He made some great saves, especially at key moments. He finished the game with 36 saves on 39 shots.
- It was the second night in a row with no shots from the opposing team in the first ten minutes. This is a bit of a questionable statistic though as it was generally agreed that Sabourin made a save before that on a Checkers 2-1.
- I think Kane should consider curbing his emotions during penalty calls. After being called for a trip, Kane argued and tossed his stick to the ice. Tonight he got away with it but this doesn’t happen often. Several times over the season, he has been called for an unnecessary unsportsmanlike conduct penalty after arguing with the ref. That kind of thing will cost you down the line.
- A perfect night for the penalty kill unit as they held off all six of Charlotte’s power plays.
Lines and Pairings:
Kane – Aucoin – Pinizzotto
Greentree – Willsie – Bouchard
Rome – Joudrey – Kugryshev
Lacroix – Kashirsky – Bruess
Collins – Wellar
Nycholat – Miskovic
P. McNeill – Fahey
Actual three stars of the game:
1. Brian Fahey (HER)
2. Keith Aucoin (HER)
3. Brian Willsie (HER)
Sweetest Hockey On Earth’s three stars of the game:
1. Aucoin: two goals, one assist, 200th AHL career goal, GWG
2. Fahey: one goal, two assists
3. Willsie: one goal, one assist