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NHL Ottawa SenatorsWashington Capitals

AHL Preview: Binghamton Senators Vs. Hershey Bears

Anthony Gruppuso-US PRESSWIRE

The Hershey Bears (Washington Capitals) play their first game of 2013 tonight, hosting the Binghamton Senators (Ottawa Senators). Tonight marks the third of eight regular season meetings between the two East Division clubs, with the next contest scheduled for January 26th, at Binghamton’s home rink, Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena.

Hershey holds the best win-loss record against the Senators, heading into tonight’s game with a 48-20-6 all-time record against Ottawa’s minor league affiliate.

The two East division squads last squared off on October 21st in Hershey, with the Senators earning a 2-1 victory. Binghamton defeated the Bears in overtime, with forward Hugh Jessiman earning the game winning goal with only 6.5 seconds remaining in the extra period. Philipp Grubauer played very well in net during his AHL debut, almost forcing the game to a shootout.

Hershey recently played last Saturday, falling to the Albany Devils 3-2 at home. Garrett Mitchell and Zach Hamill recorded goals for the Bears, but Harri Pesonen’s third period goal earned Albany the victory.

Binghamton defeated the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins last night 3-1. Senators’ goalie Robin Lehner played strong in net, padding away 43 of 44 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton shots on goal. Derek Grant, Mike Hoffman and Hugh Jessiman tallied goals for Binghamton following the Penguins opening goal 8:21 into the first period.

Braden Holtby will likely get the start in net for the Bears, and forward Ryan Stoa is expected to return to the Hershey lineup.

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