07/14/2011 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 14, 2011CONTACT: John Walton-HERSHEY BEARS
BEARS RELEASE SCHEDULE OF OPPONENTS FOR UPCOMING 2011-12 SEASON
TEAM RETURNS TO ST. JOHN’S FOR THE FIRST TIME SINCE 2005, MORE GAMES IN NEW ENGLAND AND 12 GAMES WITH WILKES-BARRE/SCRANTON AMONG HIGHLIGHTS
HERSHEY – The HERSHEY BEARS announced today in conjunction with the American Hockey League the schedule of opponents the team will face during the upcoming 2011-12 regular season. The announcement was made today by BEARS President/GM Doug Yingst.
The new six-division alignment in the AHL for 2011-12 reduces the size of the East Division, with the BEARS competing with the Binghamton Senators, Norfolk Admirals, Syracuse Crunch and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. HERSHEY will face Syracuse three times at Giant Center and three times at the War Memorial at OnCenter in central New York in 2011-12. The BEARS will play Binghamton a total of eight times next season, with four games at home and four at Broome County. Norfolk will provide the opposition ten times next season, an even five and five split between Giant Center and Norfolk Scope. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton will be the most frequent opponent for the Chocolate and White in 2011-12, as the I-81 rivals play a total of 12 times, with an even six and six split between central PA and Wilkes-Barre Township.
Outside the East Division, HERSHEY will face a heavier schedule against teams from New England in 2011-12. The BEARS will play the Manchester Monarchs, Connecticut Whale and Bridgeport Sound Tigers four times each in 2011-12, while playing the Portland Pirates, Worcester Sharks, Providence Bruins, and Springfield Falcons each twice. New Eastern Conference addition St. John’s will host HERSHEY twice at Mile One Stadium in Newfoundland, and visit Giant Center twice for a total of four games. The BEARS have not visited St. John’s since March 4-5, 2005 against the Maple Leafs.
The Chocolate and White will play a limited number of games against Western Conference opposition in 2011-12, facing the Charlotte Checkers four times, and Lake Erie and Rochester twice.
A full listing of games, home and away, can be seen listed below:
Charlotte Checkers (2/2)Lake Erie Monsters (1/1)Rochester Americans (1/1)
The format for the 2012 Calder Cup Playoffs is as follows. Eight teams in each conference will qualify for the postseason, with the three division winners earning the top three seeds and the next five best teams in order of regular season points seeded fourth through eighth.
The conference quarterfinals will be best-of-five series; the conference semifinals, conference finals and Calder Cup Finals will be best-of-seven series. Teams will be re-ordered after the first round so that the highest remaining seed plays the lowest remaining seed.
The complete playing schedule for the 2011-12 regular season, which begins Oct. 7, will be announced later this summer. HERSHEY season ticket plans are available now by calling (717) 508-BEAR.