Hershey started its two-game weekend with a 5-4 road victory on Saturday in Syracuse, then the next day returned home and dropped a 5-2 decision to Charlotte on Giant Center ice.
The Bears took a quick 1-0 lead over Syracuse and led 4-2 after two periods, but needed a shootout goal by Joe Snively to claim the 5-4 victory.
It was Snively’s third goal of the game, but he didn’t earn a hat trick because only goals through overtime count in the season’s totals. Another bright spot for Hershey was Pheonix Copley winning his 73rd game to move into a seventh-place tie with Braden Holtby on Hershey’s all-time list.
The Bears started the scoring just 43 seconds into the game when Beck Malenstyn scored his first goal of the season, after Snively’s shot was blocked by Syracuse goaltender Amir Miftakhov. The Crunch needed just 32 seconds to make it 1-1, when Sean Day’s shot from the left point flew past a screened Copley.
Hershey took 2-1 a lead on Snively’s fourth goal of the season, on the power play at 11:25, when his shot from the left circle was stopped by Miftakhov, but the rebound bounced off a Crunch defenseman and into the net. With five minutes left in the first period, the Crunch tied the game at 2-2 on Remi Elie’s first goal of the season.
I n the second period, Snively scored again, at 11:25 when he redirected a Garrett Pilon shot from the left wing past Miftakhov to make it 3-2.
On the ensuing faceoff, Drake Rymsha won a battle along boards and found Ryan Dmowski heading toward the net. Dmowski skated around Miftakhov and scored just eight seconds after Snively’s goal to make it 4-2 Hershey.
The Hershey record for two goals by different players is five seconds set February 28, 2015, by Tim Kennedy and Chris Conner against Albany.
The Crunch pulled even with a pair of goals in the third period to force overtime. Elie tallied his second of the night only 23 seconds into the period, followed by the game-tying power play goal by Andrej Sustr at 12:29.
An up-tempo, three-on-three sudden death period, did not result in a winner so the outcome went to the shootout format.
Mike Sgarbossa and Joe Snively both scored and Pheonix Copley stopped two of three shots for the 5-4 victory. Final shots on goal were 38-36 Syracuse.
The Bears ended the weekend with a 5-2 home loss to the Charlotte Checkers on Sunday. one that saw Hershey score the first and last goals of the night, with the visitors scoring five times in between, including four power-play markers.
Pilon scored the game’s first goal for the Bears, at the 15:39 mark. Snively fed Pilon, who skated around the Charlotte defenseman with a quick curl and drag move.
The Checkers answered with two power play goals separated by just 77 seconds. Scott Wilson tied the score at 18:13 thanks to a fortunate bounce, followed by a goal from Kole Lind at 19:30.
Forty-four seconds into the middle stanza, Max McCormick scored the eventual game-winner with a drive from the left wing, then Alexander True added his sixth goal of the season with a power play marker at 7:59.
Lind scored his second power play goal of the night on a 5-on-3 advantage at 14:21 of the third period to take push the Checkers’ lead to 5-1, then Riley Sutter broke Charlotte scoring run, with his first goal of the season, at 19:50 for the 5-2 final. Shots totaled 31-26 Hershey with Hunter Shepard making 26 saves in his initial start in goal for the Bears.
“We took too many bad penalties, and they were penalties,” said Hershey coach Scott Allen. “Obviously they scored four power play goals, so that was a tough mountain to overcome. When you’re taking bad penalties, and you are having a tough time killing them, it’s a recipe for disaster.”
Hershey returns to action on Saturday, Nov. 20 with a road tilt against the Hartford Wolf Pack, followed by a home contest with the Charlotte Checks on Sunday at five o’clock.