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Eastern Conference Finals Game 6 Preview: Bears vs. Monsters, 7 p.m.

June 10, 2024

The Hershey Bears take the ice tonight against the Cleveland Monsters for Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals. The Bears began the series with a 3-0 lead before dropping its two most recent games in Cleveland, forcing the series back to Hershey, where the Bears have gone 6-0 on GIANT Center ice during the 2024 Calder Cup Playoffs.

Hershey Bears (9-3) vs. Cleveland Monsters (8-4)
June 10, 2024 | 7 p.m. | GIANT Center | Hershey leads series, 3-2
Referees: Cody Beach (45), Stephen Hiff (46) 
Linespersons: Ryan Jackson (84), Joseph Mahon (89)


Broadcast Information 
Voice of the Bears, Zack Fisch, former Bears captain Garrett Mitchell, and FOX43 sports director Todd Sadowski on the call
TELEVISION: Antenna TV (WPMT FOX 43.2, Xfinity Ch. 247 and 1178, Verizon FiOS Ch. 463, Blue Ridge Ephrata Ch. 91, and Blue Ridge Newberry/Duncannon Ch. 88); Monumental Sports Network (Washington, D.C. market) 
RADIO: WFVY-100.1 FM, Fox Sports 1460-AM, SportsRadio 98.9-FM & WOYK 1350-AM (joined in-progress), Capitals Radio, In-Arena on 88.9 FM
LISTEN LIVE: Fox Sports AM-1460 StreamCaps Radio 24/7 
Radio pre-game coverage starts at 6:30 p.m., Television coverage starts at 7 p.m.

Hershey opened Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals with a 1-0 lead thanks to Logan Day's first of the playoffs at 12:11 of the first period. The Monsters responded with five straight goals, as Alex Whelan tied the game at 2:48 of the second period, and Josh Dunne batted in a power-play goal at 9:35 to put Cleveland in front by a 2-1 score. Brendan Gaunce then added a pair of goals at 11:49 and 16:29, and Dunne completed the scoring with his second of the night at 15:58 of the third.

Defender Chase Priskie's 11 points (2g, 9a) lead all league defensemen in the postseason. The 2016 draft selection of the Washington Capitals has earned at least a point in every one of Hershey's victories in the 2024 playoffs, while Hershey has lost every game in which Priskie has failed to get on the scoresheet.

For the second straight game, the Bears registered 17 shots in the third period, marking the highest volume of shots Hershey has put up in a single period in regulation during the current postseason. In both games, Hershey had outshot Cleveland; the Bears are 5-2 overall when outshooting their opponent. The club record for shots on goal in a single period of a playoff game is 24, set on April 15, 1992 vs. Rochester.

So far in the series, the Bears have outscored Cleveland 17-16 and outshot the Monsters 164-146. Hershey's power play is operating at a 7-for-24 (29.2%) clip against Cleveland, and the Hershey penalty kill has gone 15-for-19 (78.9%) with the Monsters on the man advantage. Ethen Frank (4g, 1a), Hendrix Lapierre (1g, 4a), and Mike Vecchione (1g, 4a) lead Hershey in scoring for the series, while Josh Dunne (4g, 3a) is pacing the Cleveland attack. In terms of game time in the lead through the series, Hershey has led a cumulative 102:52, while Cleveland has only held the lead for 79:59.

Bears goaltender Hunter Shepard will look for another bounce-back performance after surrendering four goals to Cleveland in Game 5. In his Calder Cup Playoffs career, Shepard has responded to similar performances of allowing four or more goals by posting a cumulative record of 5-1, most recently a Game 2 victory in the current series, when he went 34-for-36, including seven stops in overtime in a 3-2 victory over the Monsters. Shepard is second among goaltenders with nine wins during the current postseason. Additionally, he sports a 2.18 goals-against average and a .917 save percentage, both of which are superior marks to his 2023 playoff run. His 23 career playoff victories are tied with Bob Perreault for fifth in franchise history, and his next win will move him into a tie for fourth place with Gordon "Red" Henry.

Following Saturday's Game 5 loss, the Bears now have a lifetime win-loss record of 79-69 in potential series-clinching games. Hershey is 1-3 in the current postseason when needing one win to advance...Hershey is tied with Western Conference champion Coachella Valley for the league lead in goals scored per game (3.58)...Hendrix Lapierre leads the league with seven power-play points...Ivan Miroshnichenko is tied for fifth in rookie scoring with 10 points (6g, 4a)...Ethen Frank has scored in his last five home games (6g).

June 10, 1963 - The Bears completed a multi-player transaction with the Montreal Canadiens that brought defenseman Ralph Keller to Hershey. The defenseman would leave his mark on the franchise, helping the Chocolate and White capture Calder Cups in 1969 and 1974, serving as captain from 1972-74, and becoming the all-time leading scorer for the Bears with 408 points (103g, 305a) in 737 games. His No. 3 jersey was retired by the club on Dec. 1, 2002.

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