03/07/2009 - GIROUX SCORES TWO MORE, BEARS WIN BIG IN CANADA
By: John Walton
A close game early turned into a blowout late as the BEARS thumped the Toronto Marlies 6-1 Saturday afternoon at Ricoh Coliseum.
The teams battled to a scoreless draw after one, with HERSHEY putting nine shots on Toronto goaltender Adam Munro. Simeon Varlamov stopped all seven shots he faced, including a point blank chance midway through the period off the stick of Tim Stapleton.
The BEARS opened up a three-goal advantage by scoring four times in the second period Saturday. Francois Bouchard scored twice at five-on-five, Alexandre Giroux scored his league-leading 44th goal of the season and Keith Aucoin scored on the power play late in the period. Tim Stapleton provided the only goal in the second for the Marlies, who trailed 4-1 after two.
HERSHEY would tack on two more lamp-lighters in the third period, courtesy of Giroux's 45th of the season and a goal from Graham Mink. Varlamov earned his 17th win of the season in 22 decisions, and the BEARS won for the 40th time this season.
Notes: HERSHEY now heads to Cleveland to take on the Lake Erie Monsters Sunday at 5:00 p.m. Sunday's game marks the only time in 2008-09 the BEARS will play a game in the Buckeye state. The Chocolate and White return home Wednesday night to face the Springfield Falcons at 7:00 p.m. Tickets for Wednesday's game are on sale now at the GIANT Center box office, or by calling (717) 534-3911. The appearance for Varlamov was his first since January 14. Brian Pothier played his first pro game in a year and a half, joining the BEARS on a conditioning stint from Washington this week. Staffan Kronwall made his HERSHEY debut Saturday after also being assigned from the Capitals this week. Kronwall played in 42 games for the Marlies this season.
Bears Radio Network Three Stars of the Game
1. Alexandre Giroux (Two goals, a plus two)
2. Francois Bouchard (Two goals in the second period)
3. Keith Aucoin (Three point effort, just 15 away from 100 pts)