HERSHEY, Pa. – The Charlotte Checkers used four unanswered goals to come from behind and beat the defending champion Hershey Bears, 5-2, on Sunday afternoon.
The win avenges a 5-2 loss at the hands of the Bears on Nov. 9 and is the fifth straight on the road for the red hot Checkers. Charlotte will now finish the month of November with a record of 10-2-2 and has won seven of its last eight.
Jacob Micflikier scored the game-tying goal on a penalty shot at the 17:46 mark of the second period that seemed to be the turning point and Bryan Rodney scored two third period insurance markers. Mike Murphy was named the game’s first star, making 38 saves for his sixth win of the season and Chris Terry and Oskar Osala scored the other two goals for Charlotte. Mathieu Perrault scored both goals for the Bears.
Hershey opened the scoring at the 12:38 mark of the opening period. Sheldon Souray, former NHL hardest shot champion, blasted a shot from the left-point on Murphy. The puck squirted through Murphy’s arm and Mathieu Perreault was there to tap home the rebound.
Terry pulled the Checkers even, 2:05 into the second period. Casey Borer pinched in from the right-point to take a shot on Braden Holtby that hit the post and redirected off Terry’s body before he corralled it and beat a sprawling Holtby. Riley Nash picked up the second assist on the play.
Perreault scored his second goal of the game late in the second period. Lawrence Nycholat missed the net with his shot from the point, however the puck bounced off the boards behind the net and out to the left-wing face-off dot. Perreault one-timed the puck over Murphy’s left arm.
Micflikier was awarded a penalty shot, 1:18 later, and made no mistake, knotting the game at 2-2. He came in on his off-wing with speed. As he approached the net, Holtby bit on a shoulder fake and Micflikier skated around him and roofed it into the top corner of the net.
Then, just 18 seconds later, Osala gave the Checkers their first lead of the game with his fourth goal of the season. After a neutral zone turnover, Michal Jordan hit a streaking Osala on the left-wing side, who skated into the zone and wristed a shot that eluded Holtby on the glove side. Micflikier drew the secondary assist on the goal.
After his penalty had expired, Rodney jumped into the rush and scored his third goal of the year to extend the Checkers lead to 4-2 with 8:26 remaining in the third period. Zach Boychuk picked up the puck in his own zone and broke into the Bears zone, where he dropped a pass to the oncoming Rodney. Rodney accepted the pass at the top of the right circle and rifled a wrist-shot over Holtby’s blocker. Ethan Graham had the other assist on the play.
Less than two minutes later, Rodney scored his second goal of the game on the power play. He received a cross-ice pass from Brett Carson and promptly fired a slap-shot from the top of the left-wing circle low stick side. Drayson Bowman had the second assist on the goal.
Charlotte (13-8-3) will return home on Sunday, Dec. 5 and Monday, Dec. 6 to host the Syracuse Crunch. Holiday packs are now on sale and include four games, a merchandise certificate and a puck for as low as $35. Call 704-342-4423 or head to www.gocheckers.com for more information.
NOTES: The Checkers are 7-1-0 in their last eight games...Zach Boychuk is on a six-game point streak (2g, 7a) and is tied for third in league scoring with 25 points (9g, 16a)... Bryan Rodney is on a five-game point streak (4g, 2a) and is second amongst defensemen in points with 17 (4g, 13a)…Riley Nash is on a four-game point streak (1g, 3a)… Jacob Micflikier has 12 points (7g, 5a) in his last ten games… Justin Pogge has won seven of his last eight decisions.
Charlotte Checkers 5 at Hershey Bears 2 - Status: Final
Sunday, November 28, 2010 - Giant Center
Charlotte 0 3 2 - 5
Hershey 1 1 0 - 2
1st Period-1, Hershey, Perreault 7 (Gordon, Souray), 12:34. Penalties-Kugryshev Her (tripping), 5:33.
2nd Period-2, Charlotte, Terry 10 (Nash, Borer), 2:05. 3, Hershey, Perreault 8 (Fahey, Nycholat), 16:28. 4, Charlotte, Micflikier 10 17:46 (TXT_PS). 5, Charlotte, Osala 4 (Micflikier, Jordan), 18:04. Penalties-Micflikier Cha (roughing), 13:34; Beagle Her (cross-checking), 13:34; Souray Her (roughing), 13:34.
3rd Period-6, Charlotte, Rodney 3 (Boychuk, Graham), 11:34. 7, Charlotte, Rodney 4 (Carson, Bowman), 13:10 (PP). Penalties-Micflikier Cha (cross-checking), 5:41; Boychuk Cha (unsportsmanlike conduct), 9:11; Holtby Her (roughing), 9:11; Rodney Cha (unsportsmanlike conduct), 9:28; Collins Her (interference), 13:03; Borer Cha (delay of game), 13:24.
Shots on Goal-Charlotte 6-9-8-23. Hershey 14-8-18-40.
Power Play Opportunities-Charlotte 1 / 3; Hershey 0 / 3.
Goalies-Charlotte, Murphy 5-4-2 (40 shots-38 saves). Hershey, Holtby 5-0-1 (23 shots-18 saves).
Referees-Chris Cozzan (18).
Linesmen-Bob Fyrer (72), Jameel Chaudry (51).