BINGHAMTON, N.Y. – Brandon Segal scored two more goals for the Hershey Bears, but the Binghamton Senators protected a one-goal lead for nearly half of the game en route to a 4-2 victory on Friday night at Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena.
The Bears would get the jump in the game, but the Senators would be the team to strike first. While the Bears worked their first power play of the night, an errant drop pass was poked out to center ice. Forward Derek Grant grabbed the puck and sped past a Bears defenseman, snapping a shot over the glove of goaltender David Leggio in the process at the 11:47 mark.
Down 1-0 early in the period, the Bears’ top scoring line took to the ice and cashed in. Senators forward Wacey Hamilton inadvertently kicked the puck in his defensive zone right to Nicolas Deschamps, who cut toward the slot and made a behind-the-back pass. It landed perfectly for Segal, who wired a wrist shot into the upper right corner 44 seconds into the frame.
Binghamton grabbed the lead right back on a line rush. Fredrik Claesson pushed the puck down the left wing boards, where Andre Petersson was able to move it toward a trailing Matt Puempel. The Senators forward then had a teammate with him, but instead held the puck and chipped it past Leggio at 7:43.
The visitors battled back again to tie the game on a scramble at the side of Lawson’s crease. The goaltender made a save on Julien Brouillette’s shot, as well as a short-range chance from Deschamps. In the battle that ensued, Segal found the loose puck and stuffed it under Lawson at 9:06.
The Senators’ game-winning tally was one of bad luck from the Bears’ side. Chris Wideman’s hard slap shot from the center point came up high on teammate Shane Prince, who was stationed between the hash marks. The puck deflected down and trickled past the left leg of Leggio at 11:21.
The hosts held the one-goal lead until the final minute. Cole Schneider scooped up a loose puck at the defensive blue line, and with the Bears on a power play and Leggio pulled for a sixth attacker, hit the empty net with 55 seconds left to play.
Leggio stopped 32 of 35 shots faced, but fell to 10-11-2 on the season. Lawson improves to 14-5-0 with 29 saves.
The Bears record now stands at 15-13-3-3 on the season, with the team’s first regulation loss of the new calendar year
The Bears return home to face the Springfield Falcons tomorrow, January 11 at 7:00 PM. Tickets for this and all Bears home games are available at the GIANT Center box office, online at TicketMaster.com or by calling (717) 508-BEAR.
NOTES: The Bears injury scratches were RW Stanislav Galiev, D Tomas Kundratek, RW Garrett Mitchell, LW Nathan Walker and D Patrick Wey…The healthy scratches were D David Kolomatis, RW Joel Rechlicz and LW Derek Whitmore…Hershey finished the night 0-for-4 on the power play and 4-for-4 on the penalty kill…RW Casey Wellman appeared in his 200th AHL game.