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Game Preview: Bears at Phantoms, 5:05 p.m.

Game Preview: Bears at Phantoms, 5:05 p.m.

February 17, 2019

The Hershey Bears look to extend the club's winning streak to nine games, and point streak to 15, as they visit the Lehigh Valley Phantoms this evening at the PPL Center. A win in regulation would help Hershey leapfrog the Phantoms and move into the fourth and final playoff spot in the Atlantic Division. 
Hershey Bears (28-20-0-3) at Lehigh Valley Phantoms (27-19-3-3)
February 17, 2019 | 5:05 PM | Game 52 | PPL Center
Referees: Michael Markovic (47), Carter Sandlak (6)
Linesmen: J.P. Waleski (14), Tom George (61)

Broadcast Information (Pre-game 4:35 p.m.)
RADIO: WQIC-100.1 FM, Fox Sports 1460-AM, WOYK 1350-AM, Zack Fisch, the Voice of the Bears, and Matt Trust on the call
LISTEN LIVE: Fox Sports AM-1460 Stream
WATCH LIVE: AHLTVCaps Radio 24/7


Last night, the Hershey Bears bested the Lehigh Valley Phantoms in the first half of a home-and-home with a 3-2 shootout win at Giant Center. The Phantoms took a 1-0 lead at 4:36 of the first period on a 5-on-3 power play goal from Corban Knight. The Bears battled back with two power play goals in the second period from Mike Sgarbossa at 11:50 and Jayson Megna at 18:42. Hershey held a 2-1 lead until there was just 1:09 remaining in regulation when Knight tied the game with an extra-attacker goal. The game progressed to a shootout where Sgarbossa had the lone goal, and Hershey goaltender Ilya Samsonov stopped all three shots he faced to give the Bears their sixth shootout win of the year. 

The Bears current point streak of 14 games (13-0-0-1) is the second longest streak in the franchise's 81 seasons. The Chocolate and White have a chance to tie the club record tonight. Hershey's longest point streak came 76 years ago during the 1942-43 campaign as the Bears posted a 15-game point streak, going 11-0-4. Hershey didn't lose from Nov. 11 to Dec. 13, 1942 in the stretch. That year, the Bears finished first in the AHL with a 35-13-8 record, but lost in the first round of the playoffs. 

Hershey forward Mike Sgarbossa's strong play continued in last night's victory. Sgarbossa scored his team-leading 22nd goal, and notched his first shootout marker of the season. Prior to his shootout winner last night, Sgarbossa was 0-for-7 this season in the skills competition. Sgarbossa now has 43 points, just one off of his career-best set both during his rookie season with Lake Erie in 2012-13 and also with the San Diego Gulls in 2015-16. His 22 goals and 10 power play markers are both personal bests. 

Hershey scored a pair of power play goals versus the Phantoms last night ending a lengthy drought in the season series. Before Mike Sgarbossa's goal in the second period, Hershey was 0-for-33 on the man-advantage versus the Phantoms. The Phantoms rank second in the AHL with a penalty kill of 86.2%, only trailing the Providence Bruins who sit at 87.3%. Hershey's power play now ranks 15th in the AHL at 18.4%, and is now 2-for-37 in the 10-games in the season series versus the Phantoms. 

The Bears could face Lehigh Valley goaltender Brian Elliott in tonight's contest. The veteran goaltender has joined the Phantoms from the NHL's Philadelphia Flyers on a conditioning assignment. He recorded 36 saves in his first AHL start since 2013 to earn the overtime win on Friday versus Bridgeport. Elliott, a two-time NHL All-Star with the St. Louis Blues, has not played against Hershey since his days with the Binghamton Senators from 2007-09. Elliott's last start versus the Chocolate and White came over a decade ago on Dec. 27, 2008. Elliott stopped 43 shots to earn first start honors as Binghamton earned a 4-1 win at Giant Center. In five career games versus Hershey, Elliott is 1-2-0. 

Hershey Bears in a victory embrace

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