Monsters Host Bears Tonight

Tonight the Lake Erie Monsters host the Hershey Bears, the defending Calder Cup Champions of the last two seasons. The Monsters enter tonight’s contest on the strength of a four-game home winning streak, while they hold an overall record of 18-8-2-3 in friendly confines. Lake Erie has posted an 8-2-0-1 mark in its last 11 games.

Monsters and Bears

When these two teams met in Hershey on January 15th, the Monsters rallied to a 3-2 shootout victory.

In that game, the Bears opened the scoring just 4:50 into the contest when Keith Aucoin scored a power play goal off assists from former Monsters Brian Fahey and Brian Willsie.

Just 3:17 into the middle frame, Hershey went up 2-0 off an Ashton Rome goal that was assisted by Maxime Lacroix.

Lake Erie got on the board when Mark Olver scored at 18:03 of the period.

The score remained 2-1 in favor of Hershey until Ben Walter tied the game with just 41 seconds remaining in regulation.

After a scoreless five-minute overtime session, the two teams headed to a shootout. In the shootout, Olver and Patrick Rissmiller scored for Lake Erie, while Aucoin was Hershey’s lone scorer.

The Monsters went 0-for-4 on the power play, while the Bears went 1-for-5 on the man advantage.

John Grahame stopped 32 of 34 shots faced in the game and denied four of Hershey’s five shootout candidates.

At the other end, Braden Holtby went 37-for-39 before stopping two of four in the shootout.

The Monsters have gone 12-4-0-1 since their last meeting with Hershey.

About the Bears

The Bears enter tonight’s contest with a 36-18-1-3 record and they stand in second place in the East Division.

Hershey has posted a 6-4-0-0 mark in its last 10 games, including last night’s 3-2 victory in Toronto.

Former Monsters Brian Willsie and Brian Fahey are with the Bears this season. Willsie totaled 57 points (26G, 31A) in 75 games with Lake Erie last season, and went scoreless in a four-game stint with the Colorado Avalanche. This season, Willsie has posted 50 points (23G, 27A) in 57 games with Hershey, along with an assist in one game with the Washington Capitals.

Fahey played 71 games with the Monsters last season, compiling 25 points (11G, 14A) in 71 games. This season, he’s posted 18 points (3G, 15A) in 39 games with Hershey and one assists in seven outings with Washington.

In the East…

The Monsters are a perfect 3-0-0-0 against Eastern-Conference rivals this season.

Lake Erie opened the season with a pair of wins over Syracuse on October 8th (3-2) and October 9th (2-1 SO), before a 3-2 shootout victory in Hershey on January 15th.

Power Trip

Lake Erie’s power play has gone 5-for-17 (29.4%) in its last four games.

Pacing Play

Ben Walter has recorded six points (2G, 4A) in his last four games and nine points (5G, 4A) in his last eight games.

Justin Mercier has two points (1G, 1A) in his last two outings.

Matt Ford has registered five points (3G, 2A) in his last four games.

Greg Mauldin has dished out two helpers in his last two games.

Luke Walker has posted two points (1G, 1A) in his last two games.

Broadcaster Ben Holden previews tonight's matchup:


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