Bears Bitter Loss to Hartford

The Hershey Bears faced The Hartford Wolf Pack again for the second time in as many nights and this time the Bears came up short, Hartford over Hershey 4-2. The Bears donned lavender sweaters for “Hockey Fights Cancer” night while Hartford wore their white “Away” kit. The puck drop was by a young man who had beaten cancer twice and the first intermission included a heart felt interview with Sam Anas about the loss of his mother to cancer and how he felt support from the league, fans, and teammates in his time of need.

Kale Kessy started the game off with a BIG hit on a Hartford player behind the net, this was just the beginning of the physical play that would ensue throughout the night. Andy Welinski and Hartford were the first ones on the board courtesy of Gabriel Carlson’s tripping penalty four minutes into the first period. Bears captain Dylan McIlarth quickly changed the flow of the game by taking his aggression out on Hartfords Matt Rempe. McIlarth fed Rempe a big serving of uppercuts and a pretty right hook for desert before going to the ice and letting the zebras break it up, this was enough to get the boys and the crowd going. Julian Napravnik took the new found motivation and made Hartford pay with a flick of his wrist, recording his first AHL goal 10:05 in the first. Henrik Borgstrom followed Napravnik with a goal of his own seven minutes later, a beautiful 5 hole one timer assisted by Henrik Rybinski. Hartford’s Alex Whalen decided to step up his physical play by running Hershey’s goalie Zach Fucale, which turned out to not be the best idea. Logan Day made Whalen pay for his sins the old school way and to add insult to injury Whalen found himself in a four minute time out for interference and roughing. The last few ticks came off the clock in the first and The Bears went into the intermission with a 2-1 lead over Hartford.

Hershey started the second period with 1:27 left in the powerplay but unfortunately could not capitalize. Hartford on the other hand tied the game thanks to Ben Harpur and his sweet shorthanded goal less than a minute in the second, this beauty of a goal caused the flow of the game to shift in Hartford’s favor. Ty Emberson was the next Hartford player to score with a long slapper from the right side face off circle. The Wolf Pack lead The Bears at the end of the second, 3-2. Going into the third period both teams seemed to be spent but were still playing physical hockey and leaving it all on the ice. Hartford scored a late empty netter extending their lead to 4-2, which seemed to be the final nail in the coffin for the exhausted Hershey Bears.

Unfortunately for the Bears there just wasn’t enough gas in the tank or time on the clock and they received their first “In Regulation” loss of the season. The Bears played undisciplined in this game, racking up 10 penalties for a combined 23 minutes in the box. Hartford finished the night with 21 shots on goal and Hershey with 22. Hershey will have a 2 day break before facing The Springfield Thunderbirds at MassMutual Center Wednesday November 23, 2022. Puck drops at 7:05pm E/T, you can catch the Bears on AHL TV or on Fox Sports Radio 1460 in Harrisburg.

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I was born and raised in the small town of Fort Defiance, VA ( about 45 mins west of Charlottesville). Football was always a main priority of mine and from the time I could play, I did. After graduating high school in 2010 and choosing not to chase college ball, I found myself working in local factories and warehouses around my town. I have since moved to Lynchburg, VA where I have settled down, gotten married, had a beautiful little girl and have another one on the way. Ice Hockey has also become a huge part of my life. In 2015 my brother returned from a year long tour in Afghanistan bringing along with him a new found interest in Hockey, which he later introduced to me. The minute I walked in to Capital One Arena in Washington D.C. I was hooked. The speed of the game, the passion of the warriors competing on the ice, and the physicality yet gracefulness of the 250lb hulks gliding around on razor sharp knife shoes. Sports are my way of leaving reality for a while and (even if its in my own head) getting to be part of a team again!

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