PENGUINS LOSE BOUT WITH BEARS, 1-0
HERSHEY, Pa. – The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins came up on the wrong end of a goalie duel, losing 1-0 to the Hershey Bears on Saturday night at Giant Center.
In a matchup between the Atlantic Division’s two All-Star goalies, Joel Blomqvist and Clay Stevenson, both netminders lived up to the billing throughout the night. Ultimately, a five-on-three penalty kill foiled Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (20-14-5-0) and gave Hershey the edge.
A quiet first period gave way to a faster pace in the second frame. The Penguins quickly peppered Stevenson with shots to start the period, but the Bears’ All-Star rookie refused to yield.
Blomqvist responded with a handful of jaw-dropping stops as Hershey found its footing in the second period, including one where he shuffled all the way across his creased for a tremendous blocker save on a rising shot labeled for the top corner.
Hershey broke the deadlock on a two-man advantage at the 13-minute mark of the middle frame. Ethen Frank flicked a backhand shot past Blomqvist to cash in on the power play. Blomqvist’s net came dislodged when he tried to push from left to right, prompting a video review from the officials. The review was brief, and the goal call on the ice was not overturned.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton limited Hershey to just four shots in the third period, but could not find a way to solve Stevenson. Stevenson ultimately made 29 saves to record his league-leading sixth shutout of the season.
Blomqvist finished the night with 19 saves on 20 shots faced.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton has a quick turnaround for its next game, tomorrow, Sunday, Jan. 21 against the Springfield Thunderbirds. Tomorrow’s home game is also a Kids Free Sunday, where children ages 14 and under can attend the game for free with the purchase of an adult ticket. Puck drop is slated for 3:05 p.m. at Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza.
Season-ticket packages for the Penguins’ 25th season of hockey are on sale now. Full-Season, 22-game, 12-game, Flexbook and Premium Seating plans are available by reaching out to the Penguins directly at (570) 208-7367. Individual-game tickets are also available by visiting Ticketmaster.com, the Mohegan Sun Arena Box Office or calling the Penguins’ front office at (570) 208-7367.