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Eastern Conference Finals Game 3 Preview: Bears at Americans, 7:05 p.m.

May 27, 2023

The Hershey Bears continue the 2023 playoffs, presented by Penn State Health, as they visit Blue Cross Arena for Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Rochester Americans. The Bears picked up a 2-0 win in Game 2 on Thursday, and are looking to take a 2-1 series lead.

#2 Hershey Bears (7-2) at #3 Rochester Americans (7-3)
May 27, 2023 | 7:05 p.m. | Eastern Conference Finals – Game 3 | Series tied, 1-1 | Blue Cross Arena
Referees: Justin Kea (#44), Morgan MacPhee (#43)
Linespersons: Joseph Mahon (#89), Justin Johnson (#57)


Broadcast Information
Voice of the Bears, Zack Fisch, FOX43 Sports Director Todd Sadowski on the call
TV: Antenna TV (WPMT 43.2, Xfinity Ch. 247 and 1178, Verizon FiOS Ch. 463, Blue Ridge Ephrata Ch. 91, and Blue Ridge Newberry/Duncannon Ch. 88), NBC Sports Washington
RADIO: WFVY-100.1 FM, Fox Sports 1460-AM, Capitals Radio Network, SportsRadio 98.9-FM & WOYK 1350-AM (joined in progress)
LISTEN LIVE: Fox Sports AM-1460 Stream, Caps Radio
Radio pre-game coverage starts at 6:35 p.m.

The Bears
contained the Americans with a 2-0 victory in Game 2 on Tuesday. Henrik Borgstrom netted a power-play goal at 16:05 of the second period for the eventual game-winner, and Beck Malenstyn gave Hershey a two-goal cushion at 19:29 when he one-timed a Riley Sutter pass at the left circle through Malcom Subban. Hunter Shepard stopped all 24 shots he faced for his first career playoff shutout, and the first Bears shutout against the Americans (regular season and playoffs) since Peter Budaj on Feb. 22, 2002.

After being for the entirety of the second round against Charlotte, Henrik Borgstrom returned to the lineup in Game 1 of the Atlantic Division Finals and netted the overtime game-winner against Hartford, and again put up the game-winner on Tuesday against Rochester. Borgstrom’s two game-winners leads Hershey and is tied for the league lead with four additional players, including Rochester’s Jiri Kulich. Borgstrom has points in four of five playoff games with Hershey this spring (2g, 2a). The native of Helsinki, Finland is shooting at a 40 percent (2-for-5) clip, second to only the Americans’ Kohen Olischefski among players whose teams have advanced to the Conference Finals round.

Hershey is seeking its first win in The Flower City since the 2018-19 season. That year, the Chocolate and White won its lone visit to Blue Cross Arena, scoring a 4-2 decision on Nov. 2, 2018. Current Bears Mike Sgarbossa (1g, 1a), Lucas Johansen (1a), and Beck Malenstyn dressed in that contest. Since then, Hershey has lost three straight games in Rochester, including a 4-3 shootout defeat on Mar. 24 of this season. Hershey’s last playoff win in Rochester was on April 20, 1994. Mike McHugh scored the overtime winner in a 4-3 victory that saw Hershey sweep the Amerks in the Southern Division Semifinals.

Forward Beck Malenstyn is enjoying a resurgent postseason run with the Bears. After putting up six goals in 40 games in his fourth professional season with Hershey, Malenstyn has exploded for three goals through the first nine matches of the playoffs while playing predominately with Mason Morelli and Riley Sutter on the club’s fourth line. The Bears are 3-0 when Malenstyn finds the net, and 4-0 when he gets on the scoresheet.

Hershey has a record of 6-9 in Game 3s dating back to the 2013 postseason…Lucas Johansen is tied for ninth in plus/minus at +7…Rochester has been shutout in each of its last two playoff losses, following Hershey’s 2-0 Game 2 win on Tuesday, and a 3-0 win by the Syracuse Crunch over the Americans in Game 2 of the North Division Semifinals…Mason Morelli leads Hershey in the series against Rochester with two points, both assists earned in Game 2.

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