Game 5 Preview: Bears at Bruins, 3:05 p.m.
ATLANTIC DIVISION FINALS: GAME 5
SERIES TIED, 2-2
#3 Hershey Bears (Playoffs: 5-4, Regular Season: 43-22-8-3 , 97 points, 3rd in Atlantic) at #4 Providence Bruins (Playoffs: 5-4, 43-23-6-4, 96 points, 4th in Atlantic)
Sunday, May 14, 2017, 3:05 p.m.
Dunkin' Donuts Center
REFEREES: Pierre Lambert (47), Evgenii Romasko (39)
LINESMEN: Bevan Mills (53), Kevin Briganti (39)
Broadcast Information (Pre-game 2:35 PM)
LISTEN ON: WQIC-100.1 FM, WHP-580 AM, the Bears app via WHP 580 stream, Caps Radio 24/7
BEARS AT BRUINS: The Hershey Bears continue the 2017 Calder Cup Playoffs presented by Capital BlueCross this evening. The best-of-seven Atlantic Division Finals series is tied, 2-2, heading into tonight’s Game 5. The Bruins claimed a 2-1 victory over Hershey in Game 4 on Friday to even the series. After tonight, the series shifts to Hershey for Game 6 on Tuesday.
2016-17 SEASON SERIES VS PROVIDENCE (Playoffs: 2-2, Regular Season: 3-2-0-1)
December 31 PROVIDENCE Giant Center W, 4-1
January 27 At Providence Dunkin’ Donuts Center SOL, 3-2
February 17 At Providence Dunkin’ Donuts Center L, 4-3
February 18 At Providence Dunkin’ Donuts Center W, 4-0
March 12 PROVDIENCE Giant Center W, 4-2
April 15 PROVIDENCE Giant Center W, 3-0
May 6-GAME 1 PROVIDENCE Giant Center L, 3-1
May 7-GAME 2 PROVIDENCE Giant Center OTW, 3-2
May 11-GAME 3 At Providence Dunkin’ Donuts Center OTW, 2-1
May 12-GAME 4 At Providence Dunkin’ Donuts Center L, 2-1
BEARS vs. BRUINS - SPECIAL TEAMS, 2017 PLAYOFFS
Power Play 3-for-25 (12.0%)
Penalty Kill 23-for-27 (85.2%)
Power Play 7-for-36 (19.4%)
Penalty Kill 28-for-35 (80.0%)
BEARS vs. BRUINS - SPECIAL TEAMS, 2016-17 REGULAR SEASON OVERALL:
Power Play 66-for-319 (20.7%) – 5th in AHL, 4 SHGA
Penalty Kill 250-for-305 (82.3%) – 14th in AHL, 4 SHGF
Power Play 53-for-277 (19.1%) –11th in AHL, 4 SHGA
Penalty Kill 242-for-280 (86.4%) – 2nd in AHL, 10 SHGF
BEARS vs. BRUINS – TEAM LEADERS, 2017 PLAYOFFS
Goals Chris Bourque (4)
Assists Christian Djoos (5)
Points Christian Djoos (7)
Plus/Minus Barber, Bowey (+4)
Wins Pheonix Copley (5)
Goals-Against Average Pheonix Copley (2.13)
Save Percentage Pheonix Copley (.933)
Goals DeBrusk, Heinen (4)
Assists Danton Heinen (5)
Points Danton Heinen (9)
Plus/Minus Linus Arnesson (+4)
Wins Zane McIntyre (5)
Goals-Against Average Zane McIntyre (2.04)
Save Percentage Zane McIntyre (.929)
BEARS vs. BRUINS – TEAM LEADERS, 2016-17 REGULAR SEASON OVERALL:
Goals Carey, Thomas (24)
Assists Travis Boyd (47)
Points Travis Boyd (63)
PIMs Tyler Lewington (142)
Plus/Minus Stanislav Galiev (+21)
Power-Play Goals Christian Thomas (12)
Shorthanded Goals Dustin Gazley (1)
Game-Winning Goals Paul Carey (6)
Wins Pheonix Copley (26)
Goals-Against Average Pheonix Copley (2.25)
Save Percentage Pheonix Copley (.924)
Goals Jordan Szwarz (22)
Assists Wayne Simpson (33)
Points Jordan Szwarz (54)
PIMs Tyler Randell (81)
Plus/Minus Wayne Simpson (+22)
Power-Play Goals Szwarz, Grant, DeBrusk (6)
Shorthanded Goals Sean Kuraly (3)
Game-Winning Goals Peter Cehlarik (4)
Wins Zane McIntyre (21)
Goals-Against Average Zane McIntyre (2.03)
Save Percentage Zane McIntyre (.930)
BEARS RECENT TRANSACTIONS:
May 12 ADD LW Paul Carey Returned on loan from Washington (NHL)
May 6 ADD C Chandler Stephenson Returned on loan from Washington (NHL)
May 3 ADD C Garrett Pilon Signed to ATO
May 3 ADD D Lucas Johansen Signed to ATO
May 1 DEL C Chandler Stephenson Recalled form loan by Washington (NHL)
Apr. 28 ADD C Chandler Stephenson Returned on loan by Washington (NHL)
BRUINS RECENT TRANSACTIONS:
May 4 ADD C Noel Acciari Returned on loan from Boston (NHL)
Apr. 25 ADD C Sean Kuraly Returned on loan from Boston (NHL)
Apr. 23 ADD D Tommy Cross Returned on loan from Boston (NHL)
Apr. 23 ADD G Dan Vladar Returned on loan from Boston (NHL)
Apr. 20 ADD D Jeremy Lauzon Reassigned by Boston (NHL) from Rouyn-Noranda (QMJHL)
BEARS NEWS AND NOTES:
THE SERIES SO FAR: The Providence Bruins and Hershey Bears split the first two games of the Atlantic Division Finals, with Providence claiming a 3-1 victory in Game 1 at the Giant Center, and Hershey responding with a 3-2 overtime victory in Game 2. The Bruins used three goals in the first period of Game 1, with two tallies coming shorthanded, to earn the road victory. Netminder Zane McIntyre stopped 24 shots for the Bruins. In Game 2, Hershey rallied late, scoring on the power play with 2:30 to play to tie the game and force overtime. In the extra session, Travis Boyd’s first goal of the playoffs gave Hershey the victory. In Game 3, Hershey also scored an overtime victory to take a 2-1 series lead. Despite being outshot 40-15, Chris Bourque’s two goals gave Hershey the victory. Netminder Pheonix Copley stopped 39 shots in the win. In Game 4, Chris Porter scored the game-winning goal for the Bruins late in the second period to secure a 2-1 victory, and even the series, 2-2.
ANOTHER MILESTONE FOR #17: When he takes the ice tonight, Hershey forward Chris Bourque will reach another milestone. He skates in his 104th all-time playoff game as a member of the Bears this evening. That makes him Hershey’s all-time leader in Calder Cup Playoffs games played, passing Mike Nykoluk. Coming into tonight's game, Bourque needs just one assist to become the all-time AHL leader in playoff assists.
COPLEY INJURED: With 41 seconds to play in the second period of Friday’s Game 4, Hershey netminder Pheonix Copley was injured on a scramble at the net. The team has announced that Copley has sustained a lower body injury and at this time, is considered day-to-day. Copley has been ruled out for today’s game, and will be reevaluated further when the team returns to Hershey. The goaltender was 5-4 with a 2.13 goals against average, .933 save percentage, and one shutout during the playoffs. Copley was reaquired by the Washington Capitals organization from the St. Louis Blues on Feb. 27 in a deal that landed Kevin Shattenkirk in Washington.
VITEK TIME: With Copley injured, Hershey will turn to Vitek Vanecek in goal. The 21-year-old rookie appeared in 39 games for Hershey during the regular season, posting a 18-10-7 record. He finished third among rookie goaltenders with a 2.54 goals against average. Vanecek posted five shutouts, a mark tied for the second most in the AHL, and he was named the CCM/AHL Player of the Week for the period ending on Dec. 18. Vanecek won his final four starts of the regular season, including a 28-save shutout in the regular season finale vs. Providence.
KEEPING THE BRUINS IN CZECH: Vanecek, a native of the Czech Republic, enters tonight’s game with an impressive streak versus Providence. Dating back to the regular season, Vanecek has not allowed a goal in 201:06 of game action versus the P-Bruins. He has been perfect in his last four appearances versus Providence, which have included two flawless relief appearances, and a pair of shutouts in two starts. Vanecek stopped all 33 shots he faced in a 4-0 win at Providence on Feb. 18, and posted a 28-save shutout on home ice on Apr. 15. Vanecek stopped all nine shots he faced in relief of Copley in Game 4.
HE’S DONE THIS BEFORE: This is not the first time that an injury during the playoffs has pushed Vitek Vanecek into the spotlight. Last season, as a member of the South Carolina Stingrays of the ECHL, Vanecek took over for an injured Mark Dekanich in overtime of Game 7 of the South Division Finals. With Dekanich, a former Bear, suffering a lower body injury, Vanecek entered the game with the Stingrays' season on the line. He stopped all eight shots he faced in 24:53 of work as the Stingrays earned the victory in double overtime. In Vanecek’s first start since the Dekanich injury, he collected a 33-save shutout versus the Wheeling Nailers in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals. Vanecek would lead South Carolina just a win shy of the Kelly Cup Finals, as the Stingrays eventually fell to Wheeling in seven games. In the ECHL playoffs last year, Vanecek posted a 6-4 record with a 2.31 goals against average and .917 save percentage.
SHOTS, SHOTS, SHOTS: Hershey fired only 11 shots during Friday’s Game 4. This mark tied Hershey’s season-low, set in regular season loss at Albany on Nov. 11. In the two games at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center during the Atlantic Division Finals, Hershey has been outshot 79-26. Despite this, Hershey has scored the same number of goals (3) as the Bruins.
DJOOS’ED UP: Defender Christian Djoos has points in five straight games for Hershey. The blue liner has posted a goal and four assists in that span. He has seven points (two goals, five assists) in nine postseason contests. That mark leads the Bears. The Swedish defender was Hershey’s leading point producer from the blue line during the regular season, racking up 58 points (13 goals, 45 assists) in 66 games.
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