Hershey Takes Down Offensive-Powered Norfolk, 3-1

On December 26, 2010, in Game Recap, by Kathryn Hedrick

Steve Pinizzotto’s empty net goal is icing on the cake in the Bears victory over the Admirals. Photo by Kyle Mace

There’s nothing like a good power play goal to get the game rolling. Hershey did just that when the Norfolk Admirals were whistled for a tripping call. Zach Miskovic was able to tip Patrick McNeill‘s shot past Dustin Tokarski on the power play to give Hershey the first lead of the night. The score stayed the same until the second period when Norfolk’s Chris Durno tied it up.

During the second period, Ashton Rome was jumped by Norfolk’s Vladimir Mihalik. At 6 foot 8, Mihalik has the clear size advantage. They were shoving back and forth beforehand but it wasn’t until Rome had his back turned that Mihalik attacked. Rome wrestled back and they both fell to ice. The crowd expressed its disapproval as both were assessed two minute roughing penalties.

While skating 4-on-4, Brian Willsie got tangled up with an Admiral player. The call could have gone either way, but it’s definitely hard to agree with two minors (tripping and roughing) against Willsie for the play. The Bears then had to play four minutes down a man. However, they rose to the occasion and did a great job keeping Norfolk back. And it remained all tied up after two periods.

And that’s how two high-scoring teams ended up starting the third period with a score of 1-1. Keith Aucoin brought the game back under Hershey’s control with a completely innocent shot. He was at the back wall and lightly tapped the puck to be back in front of the net. It some how caromed off of Tokarski himself and found its way into the net.

Steve Pinizzotto topped it off with an empty net goal and Hershey beat the Norfolk Admirals 3-1. It’s a big two points against a very strong team. It’s a game like this that gives a team a lot of confidence.

Tonight’s Notes:

  • Yet another perfect night for the penalty kill unit as they went 4-for-4 when down a man.
  • Braden Holtby decided to make the last few moments exciting by attempting to score an empty net goal of his own. And he almost did it! The puck got right up to the doorstep but hit the post. It’s not the first time he has tried this and it definitely won’t be the last time either!
  • Very happy birthday to Bears head trainer, Dan “Beaker” Stuck!
  • Fun fact courtesy of the Norfolk Admirals Twitter: “Norfolk goalie Dustin Tokarski and Hershey goalie Braden Holtby were both born on September 16, 1989 in Saskatchewan.”
  • Since returning four games ago, Aucoin has three goals and three assists and P. McNeill has three assists. Those are two guys we are more than happy to have healthy again.

Video Highlights:

Lines and Pairings:

Kane – Aucoin – Pinizzotto
Greentree – Willsie – Bouchard
Rome – Joudrey – Kugryshev
Lacroix – Bruess – Kashirsky

Collins – Wellar
Nycholat – Miskovic
P. McNeill – Fahey

Actual three stars of the game:

1. Keith Aucoin (HER)
2. Braden Holtby (HER)
3. Dustin Tokarski (NOR)

Sweetest Hockey On Earth’s three stars of the game:

1. Aucoin: game-winning goal, assist on Miskovic’s goal
2. Holtby: stopped 31 out of 32 shots.
3. Miskovic: first goal of the night

More Photos from Kyle Mace

The players celebrate Aucoin’s goal. Tokarski stares in disbelief.

This is just how close Holtby came to scoring a goal.

This win is definitely one worth celebrating!

  • Diane

    Interesting that Tokarsky was born the same day as Holtby. They’re born a year before one of my favorite kids that I watched grow up. (No, not my kid but I kid I liked.)

  • http://www.sweetesthockeyonearth.com Brian Mills

    I think Willsie got the extra 2 for the “extra-curricular” activities that went on after the whistle, but I’m not positive.

    When Holtby got the puck, everyone knew he was going to shoot. Many people stood as the puck traveled the length of the ice coming sooooo close to going in the net. The crowd let out a groan almost as loud as a cheer when a goal is scored.

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