BRIDGEPORT, CONNECTICUT — The Hershey Bears losing streak extended to eight games in a 3-1 loss to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Saturday night at Webster Bank Arena.
Hershey goaltender Pheonix Copley was razor sharp from the get-go, stopping 24 of 26 shots in the losing effort. Bridgeport goaltender Christopher Gibson earned the secondary assist on the game's first goal, and made 32 saves in the win.
After a scoreless 20 minutes where Copley stopped 13 shots, Bridgeport continued to press Hershey in the next stanza with multiple prolonged offensive zone shifts. Following the puck being flipped down ice in effort to change personnel, the Sound Tigers countered quick and scored on a 3-on-0 break.
Gibson sent a long stretch pass to set up the break. Former Penn State forward Casey Bailey fed a pass across the slot to Scott Eansor, who beat Copley low.
Gibson turned aside all 20 Hershey shots faced through the first 40 minutes. The Bears entered the third period in familiar territory compared to the previous night, down by one goal on the road.
The Sound Tigers tallied the eventual game-winning goal at 8:04 of the third period. Eansor scored his second of the night to put Bridgeport up 2-0 on a power play goal.
The Bears made the game interesting and cut Bridgeport's lead in half courtesy of a power play goal of their own. Nathan Walker scored his second goal of the season to make it a 2-1 contest. Chris Bourque fed Travis Boyd on a cross-ice feed, who connected with Walker in the low-slot for the quick tip into the net.
Hershey found themselves on a 6-on-4 advantage in the final minute, but the opportunistic Sound Tigers hit the empty net to put the game out of reach.
Hershey's record on the season drops to 17-21-3-4, while Bridgeport improves to 22-16-4-2.
After the AHL's All-Star break, Hershey returns to action on Friday on the road against Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. Puck drop is slated for 7:05 p.m.