After an exciting shootout win the night before over the Connecticut Whale, the Hershey Bears would have to face them once more at Giant Center. Tom Poti played in his first career AHL game, and helped the Bears to a stunning 5-0 victory win over the Whale.
How can you pleasantly surprise 10,000-plus Hershey Bears fans? You put up a commanding four goals on your opponent in the opening period and out shoot the opposition 17-4.
After the power play awakened late for a big goal on Saturday night, it remained awaken in Sunday’s first period. Three PPG’s were scored on four first period attempts leading to a 4-0 lead at first intermission. The Bears did not waste any time to start laying the smack down on Connecticut, as only 42 seconds into the contest Barry Almeida scored his first of the season.
Right off a defensive zone giveaway by the Whale, Almeida blasted a wrist shot into the cage to give Hershey the early lead. Almeida’s tally would be the only even-strength goal scored in the opening 20 minutes.
With 8:02 left in the frame, Tomas Kundratek hit the dozen mark of the season with his 12th goal. With fans screaming “shoot”, Kundratek launched a one-timer past Connecticut goaltender Cameron Talbot to make it a 2-0 Bears’ lead.
Less than four minutes later, Jon DiSalvatore possessed the puck in the slot and lifted a backhander into net to add to his team’s lead. Then finally Hershey closed out their first period scoring rally with a goal by Tom Poti. Poti, who has been working to get back to the NHL after a two-year injury was rewarded with his first ever AHL goal at the 18:51 mark.
The score would not change in the middle frame, but the Bears’ goaltending would see a change between the first and second period. Dany Sabourin was replaced after 20 minutes due to injury. Philipp Grubauer replaced him and stopped all 12 shots he faced in relief.
Garrett Mitchell added a goal of his own 25 seconds after the midway mark of the final period to ice a 5-0 win for the Chocolate and White. Sabourin and Grubauer combined for a 27 save shutout, as the Bears swept back to back home games against the Connecticut Whale.
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