T-Birds Trek to Hershey to Begin Weekend Set

Nov 29, 2018
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - The Springfield Thunderbirds (11-6-0-2) take to the road to begin a two-game weekend series on Saturday at the Giant Center against the Hershey Bears (9-11-0-1) for a 7:00 p.m. puck drop. The Thunderbirds then return to the MassMutual Center for the third matchup in a week against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (12-7-2-1) at 3:05 p.m.
In the T-Birds' first visit to Hershey on Nov. 10, the Bears tallied three power play goals and held on late for a 3-2 victory over their division foes. Jayce Hawryluk and Thomas Schemitsch each tallied for Springfield, and the Thunderbirds outshot Hershey by a 33-17 margin. Ilya Samsonov got the win in the Hershey net with 31 saves, while Sam Montembeault was saddled with his first loss of the season in a 14-save effort.
The Bears received power play contributions from Jayson Megna, Nathan Walker, and Riley Barber, with Barber's 5-on-3 strike just 24 seconds into the third going down as the game-winner.
Springfield's power play, which sits among the top five in the AHL, could not take advantage on six chances against Hershey, while the Bears went 3-for-6.
At the start of Friday's action, the Thunderbirds sit in third in the Atlantic Division with 24 points, while the Bears are in the bottom half of the standings with just 19 points in 21 games.
The Thunderbirds will seek just their fourth road victory of the season while trying to snap a four-game road losing streak. Springfield last took home a road victory on Oct. 20 when they completed a two-game sweep of the Laval Rocket north of the border.
Springfield returns home Sunday for the fifth matchup of the season series against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. The home team has now won 13 of the last 14 games between the two clubs. Springfield has won eight in a row over Bridgeport at the MassMutual Center, dating back to March of 2017. Overall, the T-Birds hold an 8-2-0-1 record at home, good for the second-best points percentage among Eastern Conference teams on home ice. Anthony Greco paced the Thunderbirds on Wednesday night with his first professional hat trick en route to a 5-2 win.
Greco broke a 12-game goalless drought with his three-goal outburst, while Sam Montembeault improved to 6-0 on home ice with a 40-save performance in net. Springfield and Bridgeport have each won twice on home ice thus far in the season series.
Springfield Thunderbirds fans are encouraged to visit www.SpringfieldThunderbirds.com to learn more about 2018-19 Thunderbirds Season Ticket Memberships. Packages include a wide range of benefits, including the lowest prices for the 2019 Lexus AHL All-Star Classic presented by MGM Springfield. For more information or to order now, call (413) 739-GOAL (4625) or visit www.SpringfieldThunderbirds.com.
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