Two Pairs Give Bears Two-Point Night
Just returned from my first weekend look at the Hershey Bears this season, and I came away very impressed. After taking a 3-2 overtime decision from the Norfolk Admirals on Saturday, the Bears sent the Ads home in foul humor on Sunday. Thirty seconds worth of stellar penalty killing by Dave Steckel led to an Alexandre Giroux shorthanded goal, giving the Bears a 1-0 lead midway through the second. Giroux later added a power play goal and Chris Bourque had two power play strikes to send the Ads home on the short end of a 4-1 score. Frederic Cassivi made 41 stops to record his 12th win of the season.
Hershey won three straight from East Division rival Norfolk last week. With the wins, Hershey ran its record to 17-3-3-3. The Bears now boast the best record in the AHL, and they now lead third-place Norfolk by three points in the East Division standings. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton is a single point off the pace in second place.
Giroux now has 20 goals on the season, one behind league leader Brett Sterling of the Chicago Wolves. Giroux has five multiple-goal games this season, and Bourque enjoyed the second multiple-goal game of his AHL career.
Giroux’s shorthanded goal was his fourth of the season; he led the AHL with six in 2005-06. The Bears now have a dozen shorthanded strikes on the season, and have yet to surrender a shorty. Hershey is third in the league in power play success and is seventh in penalty killing.
The Bears have a few well-deserved days off before they visit Philadelphia on Friday. More on the Bears on the main site later in the week.