AHL Preview: WBS Penguins Vs. Hershey Bears

By Matthew Speck
Eric Tangradi (Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE)

The Hershey Bears (Washington Capitals) take on the Wilkes-Barre Scranton Penguins (Pittsburgh Penguins) tonight at Giant Center, looking to earn a win for the first time in the last four games. This is the third of twelve regular season matchups between the two rival teams this year, with Hershey already holding a 2-0 advantage thus far. The Bears hold a 68-59-11 all-time record against Wilkes-Barre Scranton heading into tonight.

The Penguins defeated the Bridgeport Sound Tigers last night 3-1, due to a hat trick by forward Eric Tangradi and stellar goaltending in net from Jeff Zatkoff.

On the flip side, Hershey struggled mightily last night falling to the Syracuse Crunch 6-1. Bears forward, Mike Carman tallied the lone goal for Hershey on the night. Both goalies, Dany Sabourin and Braden Holtby played, with Holtby being pulled during the second period.

Heading into tonight’s contest, Wilkes-Barre Scranton is five points ahead of Hershey in the East division standings, but only trail first place by two points, currently held by the Syracuse Crunch. The Bears are in an unfamiliar place in the standings, sitting in the bottom spot of the East division, with only 11 points earned through 13 regular season games.

Heading into tonight’s game, Hershey forward Jon DiSalvatore is only one point from reaching 500 points in his AHL career. Bears’ captain, Boyd Kane is only five games away from 39th place on Hershey’s all time games played list.

Wilkes-Barre Scranton is led offensively by Eric Tangradi, who leads the team with nine goals on the season. Penguins’ goalie, Jeff Zatkoff has been sensational between the pipes, holding an outstanding 1.82 goals against average and a .932 save percentage.

You can follow Matthew on twitter @m_speck and email him at mspeck21@yahoo.com with any questions or comments.

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