Jan 19, 2024

HARTFORD, CT – The Hartford Wolf Pack hosted the Hershey Bears in front of a crowd of 8,077 at the XL Center on Friday night. The Bears earned a little revenge on the Wolf Pack, striking four times unanswered to turn a 1-0 deficit into an eventual 4-2 victory.

The game-winner came 10:54 into the third period, a goal that at the time put the Bears ahead 3-1. Aaron Ness fired a shot into traffic that clipped off a Wolf Pack defender and found it’s way by Louis Domingue to put the Bears out of reach. The goal was Ness’ second of the season and first since December 2nd against the Charlotte Checkers.

A strong shift from Hartford’s top line culminated in the game’s first goal courtesy of Jake Leschyshyn. Brett Berard’s shot caught a piece of Leschyshyn’s stick for his fourth goal of the season to make it 1-0. It was the second time this season that Leschyshyn opened the scoring against the Bears.

Mac Hollowell picked up a secondary assist on the goal, extending his point streak to seven games. The goal came just 4:34 into the game.

Artem Anisimov went off for tripping at 10:12, giving the Bears their first crack at the powerplay on the night. Hershey made quick work of the man advantage, as Pierrick Dubé netted his team-leading 20th tally just 26 seconds into the powerplay.

The second period saw a back-and-forth affair throughout, as the struggle for possession led to a low volume of shots. Hershey got a second powerplay opportunity as Nikolas Brouillard was called for cross-checking at 16:05. The Bears’ powerplay needed just five seconds to vault them into the lead.

Mike Sgarbossa won a faceoff back to Joe Snively, who quickly fired a shot into traffic. Snively’s bid was tipped by Mike Vecchione in front, giving the veteran his tenth goal of the season at 16:10 of the second period.

A penalty-ridden middle stanza ended with some four-on-four time that carried over to the third period. The parade to the penalty box continued early in the third period, as Hartford got their third powerplay of the game in the opening minutes of the final frame.

The Bears put the pressure on the Pack, causing all kinds of trouble as Hartford fought to get set up. In the ensuing minutes, the Wolf Pack continued to be at a stalemate with the Bears, with neither side getting a grade-A chance until Ethen Frank got loose on a breakaway. Frank fired the puck wide, however, keeping it a 2-1 game.

Hershey created some breathing room at 10:54, as Ness’ game-winner put the game out of reach.

Frank sealed the Bears victory at 17:11, hitting an empty net for his 16th goal of the season.

A late powerplay saw the Wolf Pack get within two with just .1 seconds remaining. A Brouillard shot from the point found the back of the net, giving the defenseman his third goal of the season.

The Wolf Pack hit the road for a four-game road trip starting tomorrow night. The Pack pays a visit to the rival Bridgeport Islanders, with the puck drop set for 7:00 p.m. at Total Mortgage Arena.

The Pack is next back at the XL Center on January 31st when the Charlotte Checkers come to town. Tickets are available at www.hartfordwolfpack.com.

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ABOUT THE HARTFORD WOLF PACK: The Hartford Wolf Pack has been a premier franchise in the American Hockey League since the team’s inception in 1997. The Wolf Pack are the top player-development affiliate of the NHL's New York Rangers and play at the XL Center. The Wolf Pack has been home to some of the Rangers newest faces including Igor Shesterkin, Filip Chytil, and Ryan Lindgren. Follow the Wolf Pack on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok.  

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