WILKES-BARRE TOWNSHIP, Pa. – Nick Drazenovic’s goal with 1:01 left in the second period stood up as the game-winner as the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins defeated the Hershey Bears 3-1 on Saturday night at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza.
The Bears got things going right off the bat by scoring on their first shot of the game. Ryan Stoa would work the puck into the right wing corner, where Brandon Segal went to work in a puck battle. Segal pulled the puck off the boards and sent a quick pass toward the net front, where Derek Whitmore set up shop to tip it past Penguins goaltender Jeff Deslauriers at 1:55.
Hershey had a chance to go ahead on their first power play of the night, but Brian Gibbons forced a turnover at the Bears offensive blue line. Gibbons completed his breakaway chance by flipping a shot over the blocker of goaltender David Leggio at 6:45 to tie the game.
The Penguins would kill off a Hershey two-man advantage that lasted for 1:21, and later failed on a two-man advantage of their own. But the hosts would take the lead with just 1:01 left in the period. Chris Conner pushed a pass from the left point toward a streaking Drazenovic, who collected the puck and beat Leggio with a deke to his forehand.
There would be no scoring in the middle period, despite each team having three more power play chances.
With mostly full-strength play for the rest of the game, shots on goal were few and far between as both teams put on a show of shot-blocking.
The Penguins would put the game away when Jayson Megna entered the Bears’ zone on the right wing, and sent a harmless shot toward the net that skipped over Leggio’s right pad and inside the right post at 18:43.
Leggio fell to 2-4-1 in stopping 18 of 21 shots. Deslauriers improved to 9-2-2 with 21 saves on the night.
The Bears return home next Saturday, November 23 for a 7:00 PM faceoff against the Binghamton Senators. The first 5,000 fans will receive a car magnet courtesy of M&T Bank. Individual tickets for this and all Hershey Bears home games are on sale at the GIANT Center box office, by calling (717) 508-BEAR or by visiting TicketMaster.com on the internet. Information on season tickets, group tickets and flex plans for the 2013-2014 Hershey Bears regular season is available by calling (717)508-BEAR.
NOTES: The Bears dressed the same forwards and defensemen as in Thursday’s game, with the injury scratches D Julien Brouillette, C Jamie Johnson, D Tomas Kundratek and RW Joel Rechlicz…D Chay Genoway missed his third game due to illness…Healthy scratches were LW Dane Byers and LW T.J. Syner…Hershey finished the night 0-for-7 on the power play and 6-for-6 on the penalty kill…RW Brandon Segal stretched his point streak to four games (1-4-5) with his first-period assist.