SPRINGFIELD, MA – The tough road continues for the Springfield Thunderbirds as they gave up two power-play goals in a 3-1 loss to the Hershey Bears last night at the MassMutual Center.

“I loved the start. That first 10 minutes we were all over them. Took a penalty and they scored on the power play and kind of set us back a little bit,” Thunderbirds Head Coach Geordie Kinnear said.

Wayne Simpson got the Bears on the board at 5:45 into the opening period as he took a shot on the right side that went by Thunderbirds goaltender Harri Sateri to go up 1-0. Dustin Gazley and Paul Geiger were credited with the assists.

The Thunderbirds tried to get on the board in the second period as Dryden Hunt had a couple scoring chances on the Bears as his first chance Bears goaltender Pheonix Copley made the save with the right pad and on the second chance, Hunt hit the post.

The Bears power play would make the best of their opportunity in the second period. Mathias Bau scored his first North American professional goal as he potted a rebound in front past Sateri to go up 2-0 a little over halfway in the second period. Travis Boyd and Lucas Johansen were credited with assists on Bau’s goal. Johansen’s assist gives the rookie defenseman at least one assist in five straight road games for the Bears.

Late in the second period, it appeared as though Springfield had scored. A shot hit off of Copley’s mask and bounced high in the air.  As it came down players on both sides reached up to swat it down. One of them made contact and bounced the puck right to a waiting Thunderbird with a wide open net.  The goal was disallowed as the officials deemed that it was a Springfield player who made contact with his glove thus a handpass was called.

Chris Bourque extended the Bears lead with 2:08 left in regulation with an empty-net goal for a 3-0 lead for his fifth goal of the year. Zach Sill and Tyler Lewington were credited with the assists.

Anthony Greco, the league’s overall shot leader, would continue his goal streak with his sixth of the year and on the power play with a slap shot that went past Copley to make it 3-1 with 1:03 left in regulation. Tim Erixon was credited with the assist.

Bears goaltender Pheonix Copley was credited with 20 saves in the win. Thunderbirds goaltender Harri Sateri was credited with 21 saves in the loss and has yet to win a game this season.

The Thunderbirds will continue their five-game homestand when the Laval Rocket makes their first appearance at the MassMutual Center for David Ortiz night.  The 2013 World Series Championship Trophy will also be here. The puck will drop on Saturday at 7:05 p.m.

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