12/28/2008 - BEARS BEAT RATS 5-3
Aucoin Tallies Three Points in Win
By Jess Mikula
Keith Aucoin registered a three-point effort Sunday night, as the BEARS defeated the Albany River Rats by a score of 5-3.
Oskar Osala opened scoring for the BEARS with his 17th goal of the season, hammering home a shot from Aucoin and Andrew Gordon at 12:28 of the first period. Albany answered less than two minutes later, as Michael Ryan picked up his 10th of the year on the man advantage at 14:04. The score was knotted at one after 20 minutes of play.
HERSHEY regained the lead early in the second period when Andrew Gordon finished a Greg Amadio slap shot for his 11th of the season at 1:57. Aucoin's assist on Gordon's goal marked his 30th assist of the 2008-09 season. Kyle Wilson added his 14th goal of the year at 6:04, assisted by Quintin Laing and Bryan Helmer. Jakub Petruzalek was awarded a penalty shot late in the period, but his shot sailed wide. It marked the first time the BEARS have stopped a penalty shot since Frederic Cassivi made the stop on Aucoin Feb. 10, 2007. The BEARS capitalized on the man advantage, as Aucoin potted a power play marker and the eventual game winner for his 11th goal of the season at 19:55. Osala and Chris Bourque added the helpers. HERSHEY held a 4-1 advantage after two.
Pat Dwyer notched a goal with four seconds left on the River Rats' power play at 17:12 of the third period. Nick Dodge added his fourth of the year 31 seconds later to bring the visiting team within one. With Albany netminder Justin Peters to the bench, Bourque potted an empty netter for his eighth goal of the season at 19:47, with Andrew Joudrey recording the assist.
Michal Neuvirth turned aside 24 of 27 shots for his first win in net this season. The BEARS went 1-for-3 on the power play.
Bears Radio Network Three Stars of the Game:
1. Keith Aucoin
2. Michal Neuvirth
3. Andrew Gordon
Notes: The BEARS will conclude 2008 and begin 2009 on the road in New England this week as the team embarks on a five-game road trip. HERSHEY will take on the Springfield Falcons Wednesday afternoon at Mass Mutual Center at 1:00 p.m. Wednesday on New Year's Eve before playing the Providence Bruins Friday night at Dunkin Donuts Center in Rhode Island. The Chocolate and White will also play at Hartford, Worcester and Norfolk before returning home to face the Houston Aeros on Friday, January 9. Defenseman Tyler Sloan was reassigned to HERSHEY from Washington Sunday. Sloan had skated in 23 games for the Caps this season at the time of the assignment. Defenseman Josh Godfrey, Sasha Pokulok and Patrick Wellar were all healthy scratches Sunday.