05/10/2009 - BEARS BLANK BABY PENS
Hershey Forces Game 7 with Shutout Win
By Jess Mikula
It was do-or-die at Giant Center Sunday night, as the BEARS looked to pull even in the East Division Finals contest against the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. HERSHEY managed to shut down the lethal Penguin power play and bring the series to a 3-3 deadlock with a 3-0 victory.
The BEARS found the score sheet midway through the first period, as Andrew Gordon buried a wrister from the top of the crease for his third of the postseason at 11:35. Kyle Wilson and Staffan Kronwall recorded the assists. HERSHEY out-shot Wilkes-Barre/Scranton 16-9 and carried a one-goal advantage to the dressing room after one.
Darren Reid split the defense and went top shelf on Penguin netminder Adam Berkhoel just 22 seconds into the second period for his second goal of the 2009 Calder Cup Playoffs. Patrick McNeill added the lone assist. Alexandre Giroux finished a wraparound from Keith Aucoin and Chris Bourque for a power play tally at 3:11. The BEARS killed off a brief Penguin two-man advantage to keep the visiting team off the board. HERSHEY held a 3-0 lead after 40 minutes.
Neither team found the score sheet in the final period. BEARS backstop Michal Neuvirth held off seven Wilkes-Barre/Scranton shots to keep the Baby Pens off the board.
Neuvirth turned aside 30 shots to earn the shutout victory Sunday night, his seventh win of the postseason. Sunday marks the first time that the Penguins have been shutout all season. The BEARS went 1-for-7 on the power play and a flawless 4-for-4 on the penalty kill, out-shooting Wilkes-Barre/Scranton by a 43-30 margin.
Bears Radio Network Three Stars of the Game:
1. Michal Neuvirth (30 saves in shutout win)
2. Darren Reid (scored second goal)
3. Andrew Gordon (scored game-winning goal)
Notes: Chris Bourque leads HERSHEY in postseason scoring with 11 points in 10 games (1-10-11). Darren Reid has scored a goal in each of his two playoff appearances. The home team has won each of the first six games of this series. HERSHEY is 9-1 all-time against Wilkes-Barre/Scranton at Giant Center in the playoffs and has won 10 of its last 12 home games overall, with the only losses coming at the hands of the Penguins on Mar. 29 and Apr. 12. HERSHEY's last playoff three-in-three was Apr. 25-27, 1980, against the New Haven Nighthawks; the BEARS lost the first two of that stretch, and then won the third. Game 7 of the East Division Finals will be played at Giant Center on Tuesday, May 12, with a 7:00 p.m. face-off. Tickets for the game are available at the Giant Center box office or by calling (717) 534-3911.