BRIDGEPORT, Conn. – Brock Nelson scored the third of three Bridgeport Sound Tigers power play goals and helped the hosts snap the HERSHEY BEARS’ three-game win streak with a 3-2 victory on Saturday night at Webster Bank Arena.
The BEARS would grab a 1-0 lead on hard work by the team’s checking line. Matt Clackson found a blocked shot by Kevin Marshall end up on his tape in between the hash marks, and his turnaround wrist shot sailed past the blocker of Sound Tigers goaltender Kevin Poulin for Clackson’s first goal of the season.
The BEARS were then assessed two penalties late in the first, which gave Bridgeport a lengthy two-man advantage. They converted on both chances, first with Casey Cizikas firing a cross-crease pass from Nino Niederreiter past netminder Braden Holtby at 18:24 to tie the game. Then, with just 15 seconds left in the period, Brandon DeFazio blocked Holtby’s poke-check attempt and slid the puck past the BEARS backstop to give the Sound Tigers a 2-1 edge at the intermission.
The BEARS jumped right out of the gate in the second period and took all of 19 seconds to knot the score. Captain Boyd Kane, playing in his 300th game in a HERSHEY sweater, helped break through the Sound Tigers’ neutral zone coverage and held the puck on an odd-man rush. He sent a wrist shot past Poulin for his second goal in as many nights.
The remainder of the second period featured four separate fights and three more Bridgeport power plays. On the third chance of the period, Brock Nelson jammed a puck that Holtby nearly had under control into the goal at 16:22, giving Bridgeport a lead that they would not relinquish.
The hosts had two additional two-man advantages in the third period but Holtby was stellar in trying to keep his team in the game.
Holtby fell to 2-2-0 but turned in a 39-save performance. Poulin improved to 5-1-0 with 19 saves on 21 shots. The BEARS ended the night 0-for-3 on the power play and 8-for-11 on the penalty kill.
HERSHEY will visit the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins on Friday, November 9, with faceoff set for 7:05 PM. Fans may listen to the game on the BEARS Radio Network of stations WQIC-100.1 FM, WTKT-1460 AM, WRBT-94.9 FM HD-2, and the iHeartRadio application for Android and Apple devices.
The BEARS return home on Saturday, November 10 for a 7:00 PM faceoff against the St. John’s IceCaps. Tickets for this game and all HERSHEY BEARS home games are on sale at the GIANT Center box office, by calling (717) 508-BEAR, or online at TicketMaster.com.