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Eastern Conference Finals Game 2 Preview: Bears vs. Americans, 7 p.m.

May 25, 2023

The Hershey Bears continue the 2023 playoffs, presented by Penn State Health, as they take the ice at GIANT Center tonight for Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Rochester Americans. Hershey looks to level the series after dropping Game 1 on Tuesday by a 5-1 score.

#2 Hershey Bears (6-2) vs. #3 Rochester Americans (7-2)
May 25, 2023 | 7 p.m. | Eastern Conference Finals – Game 2 | Rochester leads series, 1-0 | GIANT Center
Referees: Cody Beach (#45), Jordan Samuels-Thomas (#42)
Linespersons: Ryan Jackson (#84), Shawn Oliver (#56)


Tonight’s Promotions:
  • Eastern Conference Finals Rally Towel - All fans in attendance will receive an Eastern Conference Finals Rally Towel on their seats, courtesy of The Hershey Company, Pepsi, Members 1st, Your Financial Community of Pennsylvania, ECS, and Penn State Health

Season Ticket Holders who have purchased a Playoff Package: please use Round 4, Home Game 2 ticket(s) for tonight.

Broadcast Information
Voice of the Bears, Zack Fisch, FOX43 Sports Director Todd Sadowski on the call
TV: FOX43, NBC Sports Washington
RADIO: WFVY-100.1 FM, Fox Sports 1460-AM, Capitals Radio Network, SportsRadio 98.9-FM & WOYK 1350-AM
LISTEN LIVE: Fox Sports AM-1460 Stream, Caps Radio
Radio pre-game coverage starts at 6:30 p.m.

The Bears
and Americans took the ice for Game 1 on Tuesday night, a 5-1 win for the visitors. Rochester struck early when Joseph Cecconi beat Hunter Shepard with a wrister on the first shot of the contest to give the Americans a 1-0 lead just 14 seconds into the first period. Rochester made it 2-0 at 9:04 when Brett Murray crashed the net and jammed a cross-crease pass from Michael Mersch past Shepard. Matt Bartkowski’s drive from the left point 1:42 into the second period put Rochester ahead, 3-0. Mason Jobst flew up the left side and beat Shepard at 6:33 to spell the end of Shepard’s night, as Zach Fucale took over in net. Aaron Ness, who had missed the previous four games for Hershey with an injury, got the Bears on the board when he scored at 9:42 of the third period on a back-door play. The Bears pulled Fucale for an extra skater with under four minutes left in regulation, but the Americans spoiled Hershey’s bid for a comeback with an empty-net goal from Lukas Rousek at 18:59.

The Bears
enter tonight’s game having won three straight Game 2 playoff matches. Dating back to the 2015 postseason, Hershey is 11-2 in Game 2 scenarios and have only trailed two games to none in a series twice. So far in the current postseason, Hershey has outscored its opponents by a combined 9-3 in Game 2s.

Getting the man advantage clicking tonight will be especially helpful for the Bears in Game 2. Hershey is 5-0 this postseason when scoring a power-play goal, and is operating at a 5-for-24 (20.8%) pace. Aliaksei Protas and Joe Snively each lead the Bears with three points apiece on the power play; both have scored once and dished out two helpers with the man advantage.

After staying quiet on the scoresheet in the Atlantic Division Semifinals against Charlotte, Logan Day has come alive offensively over the last several weeks. The fifth-year pro went the entire regular season without a goal, but helped ignite a major comeback win against Hartford in Game 1 of the Atlantic Division Finals with his first tally since April 19, 2022 (when he patrolled the blue line for Lehigh Valley), and since then has been on a tear. Day has four points (1g, 3a) over his last four games to tie for the team lead in scoring among defensemen, and chipped in an assist on Aaron Ness’ goal in Game 1 on Tuesday.

Joe Snively has a three-game assist streak (3a) entering tonight…Tuesday’s opening goal against by Joseph Cecconi just 14 seconds into the game was the fastest playoff goal against on record for Hershey; the previous mark of 17 seconds was set on April 20, 1994 at Rochester…The Bears ended Jiri Kulich’s six-game goal streak (6g) on Tuesday…Aaron Ness’ goal on Tuesday was the first playoff goal of his professional career…Lucas Johansen is tied for 10th in plus/minus at +7.

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