Hershey, PA - Christian Djoos’ goal 59 seconds into overtime, his second goal and fourth point of the night, gave the Hershey Bears a 4-3 win over the Hartford Wolf Pack Friday night at Giant Center, in the first of back-to-back games between the two teams in Hershey.
Nicklas Jensen had tied the game for the Wolf Pack with 3:54 left in regulation, and Matt Carey and Dan Catenacci also scored for Hartford. Paul Carey (no relation to Matt) added a goal and an assist for Hershey, and Garrett Mitchell also scored.
“I think we had them on the ropes a little bit, and I think we should have taken that game,” Matt Carey said. “There was a lot of chances we had in the third period. Jensen, (Taylor) Beck and (Marek) Hrivik played very, very well in the third period, they had a lot of chances. The same with all four lines, I think all four lines are starting to jell a little bit. But they (the Bears) capitalized on their opportunities, and that’s what happens.”
After a scoreless first half of regulation time, the two clubs, and the two Careys, combined for two goals in a span of 44 seconds starting at the 10:06 mark of the second period. That is when Matt Carey opened the scoring with a power-play goal for the Wolf Pack.
With Hershey’s Liam O’Brien in the penalty box for cross-checking, Beck fired a shot from the right side of the slot, and Carey deflected it past Bear netminder Pheonix Copley (22 saves) on the stick side.
At 10:50, though, Paul Carey tied it right back up for Hershey. Carey passed to Djoos in the Wolf Pack end, and he fed a perfect return pass to Carey on the left side. Carey’s quick shot just beat a diving Wolf Pack goaltender Jeff Malcolm (22 saves).
The tie lasted into the dying seconds of the period, before the Bears took their first lead on a goal by Djoos with 2.3 seconds left. Carey forechecked the puck away from the Wolf Pack’s Tommy Hughes in the left-wing corner and passed across the slot to Djoos, whose quick release got by Malcolm to send Hershey into the third session with a 2-1 advantage.
The Wolf Pack bounced back from that, with Catenacci scoring his second goal in seven games in a Hartford uniform 4:52 into the third. Defenseman John Gilmour made a dynamic rush up the left side, getting by Hershey defender Tyler Lewington in the Bear end. Gilmour’s centering pass found Catenacci in front, and he easily banged the puck past a helpless Copley.
Hershey regained the lead only 1:29 later, though, on Mitchell’s ninth goal of the season. Tom Gilbert flung the puck at the net from the right point and Mitchell got his stick loose enough to deflect it off of Malcolm’s catching glove and into the goal.
Jensen denied the Bears a regulation win at 16:06, after Hrivik broke his stick attempting a slap shot from the right side. The puck slid on goal, and Copley sticked it away, unintentionally putting it right on Jensen’s stick at the left side of the goal mouth. Jensen took advantage for the goal that would send the game to overtime.
Djoos had the last word for the Bears, though, on a one-timer from just above the right faceoff dot. He was set up by Stan Galiev, who kept the puck in the zone on the left side and played a perfect cross-ice pass to Djoos. Travis Boyd picked up the other assist on the goal, his third helper of the game.
The Wolf Pack and Bears match up again Saturday night at Giant Center, with faceoff at 7:00 PM. All of the action can be heard live on News Radio 1410 WPOP, and on-line at www.newsradio1410.com and iHeartRadio. Video streaming is available at www.ahllive.com.
The next Wolf Pack home game is next Friday, March 24 vs. the Providence Bruins. That is a 7:15 PM game, and, as at all Friday-night Wolf Pack home games, fans can enjoy $1 hot dogs and $2 beers through the start of the second period.
Tickets for all remaining Wolf Pack 2016-17 home games are on sale now at the Agera Energy Ticket Office at the XL Center, on-line at www.hartfordwolfpack.com and by phone at (877) 522-8499.
Season ticket information for the Wolf Pack’s 2016-17 AHL season can be found on-line at www.hartfordwolfpack.com. To speak with a representative about all of the Wolf Pack’s many attractive ticketing options, call (855) 762-6451.